The EU does not give in: opens investigation into the purchase of NVIDIA-ARM

One of the things politicians are adept at is saying they’re very worried about things, but then moving slower than a snail. Let’s not forget that the evaluation had to start months ago and was delayed due to holidays from the regulatory committee, NVIDIA on the other hand has tried to convince politicians with aid to European programs.

The situation of the European Union regarding the purchase of ARM by NVIDIA is at least paradoxical, in the first place ARM is a British company and after Brexit it should not concern. In addition, Europe has been behind for years in the development of semiconductor technology and it is just now when they see that they are lagging far behind that they are concerned.

The fact is that they have finally decided to start evaluating the buying and selling process and have published a press release for it.

The European Union finally speaks

European Union ARM-NVIDIA

Finally, the European Union has begun to deeply investigate the agreement between NVIDIA and ARM to see if it complies with the regulations on mergers of the supranational entity. Your conclusions? They were to be expected, they are concerned that NVIDIA will veto access to ARM technology to its rivals and that control over it means an increase in prices for the final consumer.

The words of the Executive Vice President for Competition Policy, Margrethe Vestager, in a press release they have been the following:

Semiconductors are everywhere and in devices we use every day, as well as in infrastructures like data centers. While ARM and NVIDIA do not compete directly, ARM’s proprietary portfolio of technologies is an important entry into NVIDIA products, for example in data centers, automotive, and the Internet of Things.

Our analyzes show that NVIDIA’s acquisition of ARM may lead to restricted or degraded access to ARM’s intellectual property, with distorting effects in the various markets where semiconductors are used. Our research aims to ensure that those companies active in Europe continue to have effective access to the technology that is necessary to produce quality semiconductor products at competitive prices.

Yes, months of waiting to say that the water is wet and repeat the same conclusions as the rest of the regulatory bodies around the world.

The technical arguments against the ARM-NVIDIA deal


It is true that if NVIDIA finally manages to get hold of ARM then its portfolio of technologies will become immense and at the level of Intel. If we think about it, AMD’s purchase of Xilinx goes the same way, expanding its processes and resources.

Intel bought Altera a few years ago, which has been crucial to the development of intercom technologies. Under the same objective NVIDIA bought Mellanox and recently AMD acquired Xilinx. But the purchase of ARM brings controversy due to the fact that historically ARM has licensed its technology to third parties, both the design of its CPUs and the ISA of its processors.

Many companies live on these technologies, which do not have the development capacity of Intel, AMD or NVIDIA and use ARM’s designs and technologies to make their designs. Loss of access to such technologies would cause a ripple effect, with large numbers of companies either falling or forced to negotiate with NVIDIA at a disadvantage.

What is clear is that the world is moving forward by trade and Jensen Huang and his management know that the world of hardware is complex and who your competition is is also your cooperator.

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