Tuesday, August 27th 2019

Globalfoundries Files Patent-infringement Lawsuits Against TSMC in the U.S. and Germany

GLOBALFOUNDRIES (GF), the world's leading specialty foundry based in the United States, today filed multiple lawsuits in the U.S. and Germany alleging that semiconductor manufacturing technologies used by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company Ltd. (TSMC) infringe 16 GF patents. The lawsuits were filed today in the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC), the U.S. Federal District Courts in the Districts of Delaware and the Western District of Texas, and the Regional Courts of Dusseldorf and Mannheim in Germany.

In filing the lawsuits, GF seeks orders that will prevent semiconductors produced with the infringing technology by Taiwan-based TSMC, the dominant semiconductor manufacturer, from being imported into the U.S. and Germany. These lawsuits require GF to name certain major customers of TSMC and downstream electronics companies, who, in most cases, are the actual importers of the products that incorporate the infringing TSMC technology. GF also seeks significant damages from TSMC based on TSMC's unlawful use of GF's proprietary technology in its tens of billions of dollars of sales.

"While semiconductor manufacturing has continued to shift to Asia, GF has bucked the trend by investing heavily in the American and European semiconductor industries, spending more than $15 billion dollars in the last decade in the U.S. and more than $6 billion in Europe's largest semiconductor manufacturing fabrication facility. These lawsuits are aimed at protecting those investments and the US and European-based innovation that powers them," said Gregg Bartlett, senior vice president, engineering and technology at GF. "For years, while we have been devoting billions of dollars to domestic research and development, TSMC has been unlawfully reaping the benefits of our investments. This action is critical to halt Taiwan Semiconductor's unlawful use of our vital assets and to safeguard the American and European manufacturing base."

GF is filing these lawsuits to protect its investments, assets and intellectual property, which will help to ensure that semiconductor manufacturing remains a competitive industry for the benefit of its clients.

The fact-sheet of these lawsuits can be accessed here (PDF).
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23 Comments on Globalfoundries Files Patent-infringement Lawsuits Against TSMC in the U.S. and Germany

#1
ppn
Zen 2 manufacturer(s)
TSMC (core die)
Global Foundries (I/O die)

Yeah nice. What are they thinking.
Posted on Reply
#2
Zubasa
ppn
Zen 2 manufacturer(s)
TSMC (core die)
Global Foundries (I/O die)

Yeah nice. What are they thinking.
Basically a failing company trying to patent troll the successful competitor to get some quick cash.
I bet they are hoping TSMC will settle the case.
I find it funny that they gave up their "promising" 7nm tech because they assume not enough demand and sue TSMC that actually brings products to the market.
If their 7nm was indeed as good as they throught, they wouldn't be lacking business :roll:
Posted on Reply
#3
Chomiq
Patent trolling at its finest.
Posted on Reply
#4
seronx
It is more the usual from GlobalFoundries.

From 2017/2018;
1st/2nd -- US/EU -> Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company has been accused of imposing abusive contractual terms for the supply of semiconductors, it is understood. The European Commission and the Federal Trade Commission have contacted semiconductor customers to explore the allegations.
^-- GlobalFoundries is the accuser.

3rd -- China -> GlobalFoundries, the second-largest contract chipmaker in the world, has asked Chinese regulators to probe market leader Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. for violating antitrust laws, said two industry sources familiar with the matter.

www.eenewseurope.com/news/report-globalfoundries-accuses-tsmc-unfair-selling

TSMC stole our customers! Then, TSMC is stealing our IP!
Posted on Reply
#5
Vayra86
They wont win this and if they do, US patent system is rotten to the core.
Posted on Reply
#6
PanicLake
ppn
Zen 2 manufacturer(s)
TSMC (core die)
Global Foundries (I/O die)

Yeah nice. What are they thinking.
If you took the time to check the pdf you would have seen that the involved companies are Apple, Qualcom, Cisco, nVidia and some other... but not AMD.
Posted on Reply
#8
Dragonsmonk
Vayra86
They wont win this and if they do, US patent system is rotten to the core.
You're still in doubt? :eek::p
Posted on Reply
#9
oxidized
I want to see GloFo crash and burn honestly, they're one of the reasons why hardware from AMD, especially videocards sucked these latest years. Seriously, i hope they fail totally, close down and disappear forever.
Posted on Reply
#10
Dragonsmonk
PanicLake
What did you smoke?
He smoked the buttons to change the fonts.... o_O:kookoo:
Posted on Reply
#11
moob
Chomiq
Patent trolling at its finest.
Vayra86
They wont win this and if they do, US patent system is rotten to the core.
When I saw U.S. Federal District Courts in the Districts of Delaware and Western District of Texas it was pretty obvious.

Delaware: www.ipwatchdog.com/2018/06/13/patent-litigation-shows-shift-towards-delaware/id=98060/
Texas: www.ipwatchdog.com/2019/02/18/newest-patent-rocket-docket-waco-texas/id=106453/

And more info on the why: arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2017/10/patent-cases-in-east-texas-plunge-more-than-60-percent/
Posted on Reply
#12
eidairaman1
The Exiled Airman
Waco is more centalized than west lol
Posted on Reply
#13
moob
eidairaman1
Waco is more centalized than west lol
Lol. I know. But to them it's in the Western District, along with Austin and San Antonio.
Posted on Reply
#14
dicktracy
Why is Nvidia even mentioned? And they conveniently left out AMD in the suit. Looks like a coordinated attack on TSMC based on AMD’s knowledge of the company.:roll:
Posted on Reply
#15
Aerpoweron
Patent infringements, haven't heard from RAMBUS in a while now.
Globalfoundries stopped their 7nm node. But was it a EUV node or not?
I am quite sure they are working on the next node already.

I stand corrected. They changed their strategy to go with 14nm / 12nm and switch to things like stacking.
www.anandtech.com/show/13277/globalfoundries-stops-all-7nm-development

And when i think a little more about it, they will probably go the same way as Matrox or PowerVR. They will be there, but they won't be a big player any more.
Posted on Reply
#16
Mephis
dicktracy
Why is Nvidia even mentioned? And they conveniently left out AMD in the suit. Looks like a coordinated attack on TSMC based on AMD’s knowledge of the company.:roll:
Now why in the world would AMD have any part in going after their manufacturer? My guess is that AMD isn't on the list, because they still make chips at GloFo or because they already settled with GloFo.
Posted on Reply
#18
Mephis
theoneandonlymrk
Anandtech just listed links to each patent here

www.anandtech.com/show/14795/globalfoundries-sues-tsmc-over-patent-infringement-apple-qualcomm-others-named-defendants

seams extraordinary to me that other companies are not listed , Intel for one.

If you go through the patents, some seam quite,, no all seam quite fundamental, some possibly to ANY node size.
There are several possible reasons that other companies are not listed, Intel for one...

1. Intel's process may not infringe on any of these patents.

2. There may be a cross licensing deal in place between GloFo and Intel already and there isn't one with TSMC.

3. GloFo may have decided to target TSMC first before they go after the 800lbs. gorillas that are Intel and Samsung.

This is a very interesting suit in that they are suing TSMC due to infringement and only asking that some chips or devices are stopped from coming into the US, not all. From reading comments on other sights, the most common suspicion is that GloFo is close to going under and or desperate and has decided to use it's patents to try and make money.
Posted on Reply
#19
Fatalfury
TSMC vs GloFo
china vs US
cheap china labour vs expensive us labour
7nm vs 12nm

this shows what will happen to US if they mvoe everything to US..
development will slowdown, cost of manufacturing will be very higher

i dont think TSMC,apple,qualcomm,nvidia will let Glofo win....
Posted on Reply
#20
eidairaman1
The Exiled Airman
Fatalfury
TSMC vs GloFo
china vs US
cheap china labour vs expensive us labour
7nm vs 12nm

this shows what will happen to US if they mvoe everything to US..
development will slowdown, cost of manufacturing will be very higher

i dont think TSMC,apple,qualcomm,nvidia will let Glofo win....
RoC not proc
Posted on Reply
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