Judge tosses out another Intel claim against Via

Via Technologies appears to have chalked up another victory this week in its ongoing chip-set patent infringement legal battle with Intel, but it did so by changing a product so as not to infringe on the patent, Intel said Thursday.

A judge in the U.S. District Court of Northern California Wednesday granted Via a summary judgment in a lawsuit Intel filed in 1999 related to technology Via used in a Socket A chip set for Advanced Micro Devices Inc.'s (AMD) Athlon processor.

In making the ruling, the judge said that Via demonstrated to the court that it had modified the chip set enough so that it doesn't violate Intel's patent, said Intel spokesman Chuck Mulloy.

"We're fine with that," he said. "The product no longer infringes, so that leaves one more patent in the case."

A hearing in the final patent in the dispute is scheduled in court on Jan. 22, Mulloy said.

"We wouldn't be surprised if they modified their product based on this experience," Mulloy said.

A Via spokesman in the U.S. declined to comment on either the summary judgement or the upcoming hearing.

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