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Intel adds patent infringement to suit against Via

The chip giant is still pursuing charges that a Via Technologies chipset violates its patents, despite settlements made between the two companies last month.

    Intel today updated its legal action against Taiwanese chipmaker Via Technologies to include new claims of patent infringement.

    The two companies settled many of their differences last month, but Intel is still pursuing charges that a Via chipset supporting Advanced Micro Devices processors violates Intel patents. A chipset is a series of semiconductors that connect a processor to other components such as memory.

    In today's filing in U.S. District Court in San Francisco, Intel asked a judge to allow it to amend its lawsuit to reflect the settlement, as well as the new patent charges. The chip giant also provided the court with a copy of its proposed new complaint.

    In that complaint, Santa Clara, Calif.-based Intel has added two new patents to the lineup of intellectual property that it claims Via is infringing.

    A Via representative in the United States was not immediately available for comment.

    Separately, Intel today filed a patent infringement suit against Broadcom, a rival in the communications chip market.

    In the Via case, Intel is seeking an injunction barring the company from infringing on the patents in question. It also seeks damages, court costs and attorney fees.

    Via was licensed to make chipsets for Intel's Pentium II, Celeron and Pentium III processors in late 1998.

    The deal soon broke down, however. In spring 1999, Via released a chipset with a 133-MHz system bus, a feature not yet available in Intel chipsets.

    Shortly thereafter, Intel sued Via in a variety of international venues, alleging that Via had violated its intellectual property. Intel even sought to have Via's products banned in the United States. Then, in July, the two announced a settlement on everything but the claims over the AMD-related chipset.