There have been a lot of rumors recently about a graphics licensing deal between Intel and AMD as the former’s existing deal with NVIDIA is about to expire. If a new report is to be believed, Intel has chosen AMD over NVIDIA for a graphics licensing deal. The deal will enable the chipmaker to license AMD’s Radeon graphics technology which it would then put inside its iGPU.
Intel signed a graphics licensing deal with NVIDIA back in 2011. Intel was to pay $1.5 billion over five years as royalty for NVIDIA’s technology but the company never produced chips that used it.
The background of the deal is a bit more complex. Intel actually signed the deal to settle a lawsuit filed by NVIDIA which claimed that Intel had infringed on its patents. One of the reasons why Intel signed that deal was to protect itself from patent infringement claims filed by NVIDIA.
Recent reports suggest that if Intel signs a deal with AMD now it’s likely going to bring Radeon graphics technology to Intel chips. Just like NVIDIA, AMD owns a treasure trove of patents related to graphics technology. Any company, including Intel, that tries to build new graphics technology will have to navigate this complex patent landscape so it simply makes more business sense for Intel to ink a deal with one of the two major players even if it doesn’t end up using their technology.
Neither Intel nor AMD has officially confirmed any of this yet.