Rambus and Nvidia have been arguing over five Rambus patents that, according to the the U.S. International Trade Commission, Nvidia infringed on. Nvidia escaped an injunction by paying Rambus royalties, but it was later found that Nvidia only infringed on three patents, not five. Both companies filed appeals and are now back in court.
In a recent hearing, Rambus conceded that it destroyed documents relating to the patent case, but the process was simply business as usual. The court had a tough time believing the Rambus claim, however. Reuters quoted judge Kathleen O'Malley saying "You admit you have no idea what was destroyed! You have no record of what was destroyed!" In a following statement, O'Malley added: "Remember, you saved the ones that helped you and destroyed the ones that hurt you."
Nvidia is currently paying royalty rates of between 1 and 2 percent to Rambus, depending on the chip. At least for now, there seems to be a good chance that these rates will be lowered significantly. Rambus' credibility seems to be question already and there might be a chance for Nvidia to get back to Rambus by asking for damages.