GlobalFoundries sues Nvidia, TSMC, Apple and others for patent infringement

An image of the new RTX Super cards

Contract chip manufacturer GlobalFoundries has sued multiple companies including TSMC for patent infringement and is asking the US and the Germany governments to ban all the products.

As reported by Reuters, GlobalFoundries filed a lawsuit on Monday in the US and Germany. The company is seeking damages from Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC) for using the infringed technology to make “tens of billions of dollars of sales”. The lawsuit also extends to Apple Inc, Qualcomm Inc, Google, Nvidia Corp, Lenovo, and Taiwan’ MediaTek Inc as they all use TSMC-manufactured technology in their chips. The surprising aspect of the lawsuit is that GlobalFoundries has omitted AMD from the lawsuit even though they also use TSMC’s technology.

While semiconductor manufacturing has continued to shift to Asia, GlobalFoundries has bucked the trend by investing heavily in the American and European semiconductor industries.

This action is critical … to safeguard the American and European manufacturing base.

– GlobalFoundries

TSMC has openly criticized the lawsuit and called it “baseless”. They also said that they will “fight vigorously, using any and all options” to protect its proprietary technologies.

We are disappointed to see a foundry peer resort to meritless lawsuits instead of competing in the marketplace with technology.

– TSMC

At this moment, GlobalFoundries has leverage over all the companies listed in the lawsuit. Nvidia, at the moment, is at a huge loss as the company is entirely dependent on TSMC for its graphics card. Nvidia utilizes TSMC’s 12nm process node for its Turing RTX 20-series and 16-series graphics cards. With Nvidia out of the equation, AMD can easily capture the US and Germany market with its new graphics cards. We expect the lawsuit to be resolved soon but if GlobalFoundries wins the case, they could get Nvidia along with other companies to stop selling their new chipsets in the US and Germany.

The lawsuit was filed earlier this week so details are scarce at the moment especially regarding the exclusion of AMD even though they rely on TSMC to manufacture its 7nm chipsets.

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