MANHASSET, N.Y. Rambus Inc. said Tuesday (Jan.25) it is suing Hynix Semiconductor, Infineon Technologies, Inotera Memories and Nanya Technology Corp., alleging the four competitors illegally used its technology for their DDR2 memory devices and GDDR2 and GDDR3 graphics memory devices.
Rambus (Los Altos, Calif.) filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, asserting the four companies infringed up to 18 Rambus patents for the memory devices. According to the complaint, Rambus is seeking to recoup damages for what it alleged was willful infringement by its rivals. It is seeking an injunction preventing the companies from continuing to infringe on its patents.
For Rambus, the suit is the latest in a string of court battles against rival DRAM makers as the company's royalty-based business model continues to be tested and intellectual property debates remain a hot-button issue for technology companies.
Last week, the U.S. District Court for Northern California ruled in favor of Rambus in a suit against Hynix over 29 patents related to RDRAM technology. The case will go to trial in March.
But Rambus has also been on the short end of court battles over the years, losing a patent suit against Infineon involving SDRAM and DDR devices in 2001.
Parts of that decision were later reversed on appeal by the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.
In addition, Rambus has come under scrutiny by the Federal Trade Commission, which was unsuccessful in an antitrust case against the memory vendor.