Infineon claims another battle won in Rambus suit

Chip maker Infineon Technologies AG is claiming another victory in an ongoing legal battle with rival Rambus Inc. In its final ruling Thursday, the Federal District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia has entered an injunction permanently barring Rambus from asserting certain of its U.S. patents against Infineon's SDRAM (synchronous dynamic RAM) and DDR (double data rate) SDRAM products, Infineon said in a statement.

Rambus said in its own statement it will quickly appeal the ruling, which it said "builds upon and adds to a series of reversible errors previously made by the same Court."

The lawsuit arises out of patents obtained by Rambus on SDRAM and DDR SDRAM technologies that were being developed by JEDEC (Joint Electron Device Engineering Council), in which Rambus was participating. Rambus lost the first round and was fined US$3.5 million for fraud, though the penalty was later reduced to $350,000.

In a related decision last week, a California court postponed a lawsuit by South Korean chip maker Hynix Semiconductor Inc. against Rambus, in which Hynix had sought a declaration that its SDRAM and DDR SDRAM products do not infringe upon Rambus patents. The court indicated it was inclined to delay the case until resolution of the Infineon lawsuit. Along with Infineon and Hynix, Micron Technology Inc. of Boise, Idaho, also refused to pay Rambus license fees on the SDRAM and DDR SDRAM patents. Micron and Rambus are fighting a legal battle in the matter before the U.S. District Court in Delaware, but no significant rulings have been made.

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