The initial court hearing in Intel Corp’s retaliatory suit against Digital Equipment Corp, due to be heard Thursday in a San Jose courtroom, has been postponed until October 30, adding fuel to rumors that the two are working on an out-of-court settlement. But Intel insists that there is nothing significant behind the postponement and that it was the court who shifted the hearing date. Apparently it was a last-minute change, with the DEC legal team already on a plane en route to San Jose when it heard the news. Reports have been circulating this week that Intel was on the verge of settling the suit for $1.6bn in a deal that would also include a licensing agreement allowing Intel access to DEC’s Alpha microprocessor technology. Howard High, an Intel spokesman, dismisses the notion of an imminent settlement, and says that the company still plans to slug it out in court, adding it could be like the O.J. trial. Whether we’ll see Robert Palmer or Andy Grove in a white Bronco remains to be seen.
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