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Broadcom, CSR Settle Patent Fight Over GPS Devices

Broadcom Corp., the biggest maker of chips for television set-top boxes, said it settled a patent dispute with CSR Plc over technology used in global-positioning systems. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.

The settlement includes a pledge by both chipmakers not to sue each other for five years, Broadcom said in a statement today. The agreement covers civil lawsuits and a case pending before the U.S. International Trade Commission in Washington.

The dispute dates to Global Locate Inc., now owned by Broadcom, and SiRF Technology, now part of Cambridge, England-based chipmaker CSR, when they were standalone companies. Each accused the other of infringing patents as part of a battle over who would supply chips for GPS devices including for those made by TomTom NV.

The most recent case was filed in October, when CSR claimed Irvine, California-based Broadcom was using its inventions in mobile phones, media players and Bluetooth devices. CSR makes chips that are used in Nokia Oyj mobile phones.

A U.S. appeals court in April upheld a finding that SiRF violated Broadcom patents and an import ban on the chips and devices containing them imposed by the ITC. SiRF altered its products to avoid using Broadcom technology, and the alterations were approved by U.S. customs officials, SiRF’s founder Kanwar Chadha said in an April telephone interview.

Broadcom filed a complaint Oct. 8 against CSR and SiRF at the ITC, claiming SiRF’s new products still infringe the patents and that SiRF ignored an order to stop selling products that infringe the patents.

The civil case is CSR Plc v. Broadcom Corp., 10cv00876, U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware (Wilmington). The ITC case is In the Matter of Certain GPS Devices and Products Containing Same, 337-602, U.S. International Trade Commission (Washington).

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