Intel Appeals EU's Antitrust Decision

Last week, we covered the European Commission's (EC) decision that Intel had abused its market power. One of the findings that lead to the $1.44 billion fine was Intel's rebate system, which only awarded discounted prices to companies that committed to buying the overwhelming majority of their products from the CPU manufacturer. Intel, for its part, thinks the EC got it all wrong; the company has filed an appeal in the European Court of First Instance. While it's already made arrangements to pay the fine in the third quarter, Intel hasn't copped to setting even a toe over the the letter of the law.

"We believe that our policies and practices have always been legal and aboveboard," London-based Intel spokesman Robert Manetta told the New York Times. "We have always felt the commission misinterpreted or ignored evidence that we presented to them,...that is why we are taking our case to court."

Underneath the rhetoric, however, Intel is playing ball. The fine it owes may end up in a holding account until the appeal is decided, but the company has already stated it is not asking the court to overrule the commission's findings with regard to CPU rebates. With the EU case mostly finished, eyes now turn to AMD's own lawsuit against Intel, currently expected to begin in February, 2010.