FTC Tells Rambus It Needs To License Its Chip Tech At A Set Price

from the oops dept

Ah, Rambus. There’s just something about this company (or, more accurately, it’s wildly angry investors) who make it fun to follow. The various lawsuits have been going on for quite some time, but the accusations basically stated that Rambus quietly filed patent applications on technology that they knew was being standardized without telling the standards board. That way, once the standard was set and the patents were approved, they could charge everyone a nice fee. In a later case, Rambus was also accused of destroying documents, though they were later exonerated over that claim. Still, that never stops the somewhat rabid investors in Rambus from flooding many message boards insisting that the company can do no wrong — and anyone who points to some of the more questionable patenting activities of the company is obviously part of some grand conspiracy (we’ve even been accused of corruption after discussing one Rambus case). Unfortunately, it appears that the FTC doesn’t agree with that crowd. It’s now decided that Rambus must license its DRAM chips to other vendors and do so at a capped royalty fee, as punishment for what the company has done. Of course, Rambus plans to appeal, to drag this issue out even longer. To be honest, it’s not clear that it really makes much of a difference what the FTC does at this point, but given the history of stories around this company and the vehement insistence that it’s squeaky clean, it seemed worth noting that the FTC still sees things the other way.

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Comments on “FTC Tells Rambus It Needs To License Its Chip Tech At A Set Price”

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Mike (profile) says:

Re: Rambus

Watch out Noel… the Rambus investor fans may get angry with you. Last time I pointed to Rambus’ patent abuse, I got angry emails from Rambus investors, claiming that Rambus legal counsel as well as the FBI had been alerted to my lies, and it was likely that I’d soon be hearing from both.

And then there were the charges of “corruption.”

You may be next… 🙂

Dosquatch says:

Re: Here's a story

NOBODY CARES because nobody uses RAMBUS!!! It’s inefficient crap-ola.

Wrong, you don’t care. Rambus is actually faster and more stable than DDR/DDR2, that’s why it is used mostly in servers (which is not the same as saying most servers use Rambus, but it does mean that quite a few IT pros do care). The price, not the technology, is what kept it from being more widely adopted in desktop systems.

It’s another case of VHS vs. BetaMax – the superior format lost to the more consumer-friendly version.

russell bramlett says:

Theft of property

Let me get this straight
Rambus has pending patents Micron,Samsung,Infenion,Hynix et al sign non disclosure
statements in order to see how the tech works.

They invite Rambus to join a standard setting body(jedec)
Jedec refuses to let Rambus present their tech for the standard(the only member ever refused by the way)

Rambus resigns from jedec and tells the members their tech will not be free.
Jedec members STILL incorporate the tech.

Micron,Hynix,Infenion et al refuse to pay and file law suites in Cal and Del

Micron and Hynix complain to the FTC about Rambus attending jedec and wanting to be paid for their PRIVATE PROPERTY
FTC files charges against Rambus.

Former head of ftc Bill Bauer was working for Microns law firm
Ftc judge finds Rambus NOT GUILTY in the longest most expensive trial in the history of the ftc.

Ftc commissioners overrule the judge that heard all the evidence.

Now evidence shows that Microns law firm assisted and prepared much of the ftc’s case prior during and after the trial.This in clear violation of ftc statutes.

Oh by the way the Court of Appeals ruled that jedec had NO DUTY TO DISCLOSE and that RAMBUS HAD NO PATENTS THAT READ ON THE STANDARD.
Hope this helps and hopefully no one will steal your business and get a corrupt government agency to aid in the theft.rb

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