Intel Corp. has granted Acer Laboratories Inc. a license to make Pentium 4 chipsets, which should hit the market in Q3. Acer Labs president Chin Wu told EE Times that Acer is free to support either Direct Rambus DRAM or double-data-rate (DDR) SDRAM. Moreover, Wu said that the license has fewer restrictions than past agreements and that he expects Intel will also license Via Technologies and Silicon Integrated Systems. Intel has already awarded a licence to Canada’s ATI Technologies Inc.
Intel held back licensing rights for chipsets during the Pentium II era and was able to dominate the market for PII parts, but chipset shortages and competition from Advanced Micro Devices Inc. put an end to the practice. Acer signed a license agreement with Intel in 1999 and has since made PII, PIII and Celeron chipsets.