Former Imagination Technologies Partner Apple Signs New License Agreement


Announced in a brief press release on the Imagination website, the new agreement provides that Apple will pay license fees for multi-year rights to a “wider ranger” of the intellectual property of the British company. The intellectual property that is involved in the agreement was not disclosed in today’s statement:

Imagination Technologies (“Imagination”) announces that it has replaced the multi-year multi-use license agreement with Apple, announced for the first time on February 6, 2014, by a new multi-year license agreement under which Apple has access to a range of Imagination’s intellectual property in exchange for license rights.

Former Apple collaborator in the field of GPU design, Imagination saw his fortune collapse in 2017 when the tech giant decided to move GPU operations internally.

In April 2017, Imagination announced that Apple plans to stop using the company’s IP in its hardware designs by 2019. The company is heavily dependent on license revenue from the iPhone maker, which amounted to around $ 81 million in fiscal 2017. Apple’s abrupt withdrawal left Imagination beating to stay alive as its stock plummeted.

Shortly after the announced breakup, Imagination entered a “dispute resolution process”, accusing Apple of “unauthorized use of Imagination’s confidential information and intellectual property rights”. In its defense, Apple said
it ceased to accept Imagination’s new intellectual property in 2015, adding that the company only decided to inform its shareholders of the situation after Apple had invoked a contractual clause to pay less royalty rates high.

The chipmaker sought to sell in June 2017 and eventually found a buyer in the Chinese-backed stock company Canyon Bridge.

For years, Apple has relied on Imagination’s PowerVR technology in its A-series system-on-chip designs, silicon that can still be found on some iPads, Apple Series 3, and Apple TV 4K. In 2017, however, Apple introduced its own integrated GPU design with the A11 Bionic chip powering the iPhone 8 and iPhone X. Subsequent A-series designs are based solely on Apple technology.

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