In our lawsuit happy country, nothing is too surprising
anymore. This time around, Microsoft and Nintendo have been hit with a lawsuit
by Anascape, a small Texas-based company. Anascape claims that Microsoft and
Nintendo have infringed
on 12 of its patents relating to game controllers. The patents in question
were issued between 1999 and 2005.
Anascape wants to be compensated for the infringements
including interest and has asked to see what revenues have been generated by
both companies as a result of the claimed infringements. This unknown company
is working the patent system and using it to its advantage. In fact, if the
company fails to get a permanent injunction against Microsoft and Nintendo, it
intends to have a licensing fee enacted against the two giants. From GameDaily.biz:
The patents seem to
deal with almost every aspect of today's modern video game controller, such as
analog controls, analog pressure sensors for buttons, vibration and tactile
feedback, and more. One would think that Sony's PS2 controller would come into
conflict with these patents as well, so it's not clear why Anascape has
targeted Microsoft and Nintendo and has not included Sony in the suit.
This isn't the first time that console makers have been
attacked concerning game controllers. Back in 2005, Immersion took Sony
to task and won $91 million USD as a result of infringements on its force
quote: In business, revenue is the amount of money that a company actually receives from its activities, mostly from sales of products and/or services to customers. To investors, revenue is less important than profit, or income, which is the amount of money the business has earned after deducting all the business's expenses.
quote: and the XBox has never been profitable
quote: The patents seem to deal with almost every aspect of today's modern video game controller, such as analog controls