updated 11:05 am EDT, Wed April 25, 2012
Intel may get appeal on EU claims at last
Intel may get a long expected chance to appeal a $1.45 billion EU fine at a hearing this summer. Insiders talking to Reuters had Intel making its case at an EU General Court between July 3 and 6. How it would challenge the complaint wasn't said, but it might rely on an ombudsman finding that the European Commission hadn't conducted the investigation properly and missed a meeting with Dell.
Antitrust officials had determined that Intel was being anticompetitive through practices meant to dissuade PC builders from considering AMD. Among the accusations were that Intel conducted price dumping, or cutting prices low enough that it might hurt the company's finances but would make it difficult for AMD to compete. Intel allegedly also threatened companies that put a significant amount of effort into selling AMD-based systems, and may have made sure that its code compilers didn't work well with AMD architecture.
Intel has always insisted that it did nothing wrong and simply had the better product. It has nonetheless faced multiple antitrust investigations worldwide, including other fines. A settlement with the FTC explicitly included provisions that prevented Intel from conducting the tactics it thought had been legal.