HTC has agreed to pay $300 million to acquire S3 Graphics from chip-maker VIA (although more than half of that money will go to WTI, a private investment firm). S3 makes graphics solutions for desktop and notebook computers as well as embedded products. Since VIA bought the graphics company 10 years ago, most VIA processors have also included integrated S3 graphics.
S3 has never been one of the biggest names in PC graphics. You don’t hear the company mentioned in the same breath as NVIDIA or AMD/ATI very often. But the company does have experience making low power solutions which support 3D graphics and HD video playback. That’s something HTC could certainly use to its advantage as the company expands its line of products to include tablets as well as smartphones.
The deal has been approved by the boards of directors at VIA, WTI, and HTC, but still needs regulatory approval. VIA says the sale could be complete by the end of the year.