Samsung wants the ITC to block Nvidia chips in the US

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In the latest round of a patent battle between Nvidia and Samsung, Samsung petitioned the US International Trade Commission to block the sale of Nvidia’s graphics processors in the US, Bloomberg reported on Friday.

The request, according to the ITC, would extend to both Nvidia’s graphics cards and systems on a chip, which means it could conceivably impact both Nividia’s GeForce graphics card line and its Tegra mobile processors.

The back-and-forth between the two companies began in September when Nvidia sued both Samsung and Qualcomm, alleging that the two companies infringed on some of Nvidia’s GPU-related patents. At the time, Nvidia said it requested that the ITC block Samsung Galaxy phones that contained certain chips from Qualcomm, ARM, and Imagination Technologies.

For its part, Samsung struck back against Nvidia with a patent lawsuit of its own earlier this month. In its complaint, Samsung claimed that infringed on six of its patents related to chip design and other technologies.

Why this matters: It may go without saying, but a ban on critical components such as graphics cards and processors could have a ripple effect across the tech industry, as it could affect other companies that use Nvidia’s chips in its products. 

Engadget notes that “ITC complaints typically take less time to handle than lawsuits,” and that as a result, “there’s a greater chance that Nvidia and partners will have to yank their products.” 

An Nvidia spokesperson told Bloomberg that it plans to lodge its own complaint with the ITC against Samsung, though, so this game of chicken is far from over.

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