The U.S. Federal Trade Commission announced Wednesday that it had found Rambus guilty of monopolizing memory market by not disclosing its patent details while being a memory committee member at Joint Electron Device Engineering Council (JEDEC).
Rambus claims it owns patents on key-technologies used in modern dynamic random access memory that is deployed in every single computer sold. The company is trying to force all makers of DRAM to pay royalties to Rambus for every single SDRAM, DDR SDRAM and DDR2 SDRAM chip sold.
“Rambus withheld information that would have been highly material to the standard-setting process within JEDEC. JEDEC expressly sought information about patents to enable its members to make informed decisions about which technologies to adopt, and JEDEC members viewed early knowledge of potential patent consequences as vital for avoiding patent hold-up,” the commission said.
Rambus, however, believes that it is not guilty and the royalty fees it collects from the world’s makers of memory are reasonable.
The Commission is to hold additional hearings to determine an “appropriate remedy”, but its decision threatens past and future royalties Rambus has earned from patents it holds on memory technology, according to an article by Financial Times.