Samsung has filed a lawsuit against chip producer Nvidia, accusing it of infringing its patents and faking benchmark results for its processors. Nvidia has since spoken up about the suit, filed last week, claiming Samsung's accusations of benchmark deception is false, by comparing its Tegra K1-powered Shield Tablet against Samsung's Galaxy Note 4 and its Exynos 5433 processor.
The new suit claims Nvidia infringed on a total of six patents, including some relating to how semiconductors buffer data, reports Reuters. The same suit also names Velocity Micro, a customer of Nvidia's, and claims it is infringing on eight patents. "We are pursuing necessary legal measures to defend our intellectual property rights and to ensure our continued growth in the IT industry," said Samsung in a statement.
The latest lawsuit comes after Nvidia filed a dispute with the US International Trade Commission, claiming Samsung and Qualcomm were infringing its own patents. Executive Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer for Nvidia David Shannon claims this was almost inevitable, writing that when Nvidia "filed those suits in the ITC and Delaware District Court, we fully expected that we would be sued in response. It's a predictable tactic."
Samsung's accusation is that Nvidia's claim it uses the "world's fastest mobile processor" in the Shield Tablet is misleading, and based on the results of one benchmark. Primate Labs' Geekbench 3 is said to show the Note 4 as scoring higher than the Nvidia Shield Tablet. Samsung goes on to state the Apple iPad Air 2 scores higher than the Shield Tablet, further claiming the Tegra K1 is beaten by two system-on-chips, and therefore cannot be the fastest. Samsung has previously found itself in the middle of a debate over benchmarks, with the Korean manufacturer found to have used software tricks to artificially inflate benchmark scores for the Galaxy Note 3.
"We aren't yet ready to respond formally to Samsung's lawsuit," notes Shannon, "But we can't hold back on their false contention that Samsung's Galaxy Note 4 outperforms the Shield Tablet." A graph to show comparative speeds of each device in a range of benchmarking suites shows the Note 4 in the lead for just three. Another 18 benchmarks included on the chart has Nvidia's device winning, and though the majority are between an identical speed and twice the speed of the Note 4, including Geekbench 3's multi-threaded test, some break the two-times barrier, with two showing the Shield Tablet as five and six times faster. Nvidia claims the benchmarks were performed in a "standard out-of-box configuration with publicly-available software."
As for the inclusion of Velocity Micro in the lawsuit, Nvidia states it is "unfortunate" for the company to be drawn in. "This isn't Velocity's fight. But Samsung is just trying to keep its lawsuit in Virginia, which has a faster time-to-trial than most jurisdictions in the United States." Shannon goes on to write that "it can be a dangerous strategy for one of the largest companies on the planet to decide to sue one of the smallest companies in all of Virginia."