GlobalFoundries and TSMC announced this afternoon that they have signed a broad cross-licensing agreement that has concluded all of their ongoing legal disputes. Under the agreement, the two companies will license each other's semiconductor related patents granted so far, as well as any patents filed over the next ten years.
In the past, GlobalFoundries has accused TSMC of patent infringement. At the time of the first lawsuit in August, the TSMC said the charges were baseless and that it would defend itself in court. In October, TSMC counted its rival and in turn accused GlobalFoundries of infringing several patents. Now, less than a month after the count, the two companies have agreed to sign a broad cross-license agreement and dismiss all ongoing litigation.
Under the agreement, GlobalFoundries and TSMC will license each other's worldwide existing semiconductor patents, as well as patents filed by the two companies over the next ten years. Broadly speaking, GlobalFoundries and TSMC have thousands of semiconductor-related patents, some of which were originally granted to AMD and IBM.
Cross-licensing agreements are not uncommon in the high-tech world. Instead of fighting each other in expensive legal battles, companies with a broad portfolio of patents only sign cross-licensing agreements with peers, freeing them to focus on innovating with their products rather than finding ways to avoid infringing on competitors' patents .
Source: GlobalFoundries / TSMC Press Release