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Thread: SONY ordered to stop selling Playstation and Playstation 2

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    No more Mr Nice Guy. Nick's Avatar
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    SONY ordered to stop selling Playstation and Playstation 2

    The Immersion Corporation has won it's patent battle with Sony, leaving Sony with a massive bill and and an injunction against selling Playstations, Dual Shock controllers and 47 named games which infringe Immersion's patents.

    Sony are still able to sell the PSP, which it might need to do very well with if they don't win their appeal... as they'll have to foot a $90.7million USD bill for payment of past licences and pre-judgement interest.

    You can check out the full release from Immersion here.

    Judging (excuse the pun) from the ruling that's been given, Immersion must have a damn near bullet proof case. Usually, with patent infringement cases, there's a bit of grey area which is normally reflected in the ruling. That wouldn't appear to be the case here as the large back-dated license payments and interest would show. BUt the ban on the console, controllers and games underlines the strength of the case that Immersion must have had.

    Of course, all this is now in the appeal process, so it may be some time until the matter is resolved.

    Immersion expect Sony to post a bond which will mean they won't have to pay up immediately whilst their appeals are being processed.

    Whatever, this is a fairly hefty slap on the wrist for Sony... perhaps they should've followed Nintendo's lead with patent claims and just settled out of court?
    Quote Originally Posted by Dareos View Post
    "OH OOOOHH oOOHHHHHHHOOHHHHHHH FILL ME WITH YOUR.... eeww not the stuff from the lab"

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    bored out of my tiny mind malfunction's Avatar
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    Surely the original Playstation would have been in the works a long time before immersion even started up in 1993?

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    No more Mr Nice Guy. Nick's Avatar
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    It centers around the Dual Shock technology and related technologies to that. Sony must've incorporated it into later versions of the Playstation, and obviously had it in the PS2 from the off.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dareos View Post
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    AKA Chrispynutt Gunbuster's Avatar
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    Yes but the dual shock didn't come out untill the launch of Gran Tourismo in December 1997.

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    bored out of my tiny mind malfunction's Avatar
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    Ah... So it's a bundling thing... All consoles are bundled with the dual shock controllers so they can't sell the consoles. Would be suprised if there wasn't 'prior art'... Though if Nintendo have already settled out of court with them then maybe not.

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    AKA Chrispynutt Gunbuster's Avatar
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    actually i think the Nintendo system is different rather than just 2 motors with uneven weights it does something else and therefore is fine. The Xbox controller is another matter.

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    No more Mr Nice Guy. Nick's Avatar
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    A quick search of Immersion's site shows the case revolved around two patent infringements by Sony relating to Immersion's tactile sensory technology.

    Here's one of the patent applications here which makes for heavy reading.

    As to the timings, I can't comment, but from the rulling, it would appear that there is more unsaid at this stage.

    I wouldn't like to speculate on the exact details as I'm sure they'll be rleased once everything is settled.

    From what I've read so far, it centers on the tactile feedback technology which Sony use in the Dual Shock.

    Edit: And Microsoft have licensed the technology as have Logitech, there's probably more but those are names that I saw as I cruised the site looking for patent numbers...
    Last edited by Nick; 29-03-2005 at 01:15 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dareos View Post
    "OH OOOOHH oOOHHHHHHHOOHHHHHHH FILL ME WITH YOUR.... eeww not the stuff from the lab"

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    Bah Humbug. Dooms's Avatar
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    however you cant buy a ps1 or ps2 without dual shock... so thats banned aswell

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    Goron goron Kumagoro's Avatar
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    does anyone know what exactly the claims against sony are?

    reading some of the patent link it seems to me too general and non technical.

    As i dont know what exactly sony has infringed upon its hard to tell if it a load of
    bollocks or not.

    for example,

    3. A computer peripheral as recited in claim 1 wherein said displayed interaction is the collision of two virtual objects within said graphical simulation.

    now does this mean that when something collides something vibrates?
    well arnt there lots of arcade machines which vibrated for example rad mobile, chase HQ etc.

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    If your 5555... Swafe's Avatar
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    So that means they wont be able to sell PS2s no more ? Doesnt that mean their effectivly screwed ? Well....until the PSP and PS3 hits our stores, which wont be for a while
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    No more Mr Nice Guy. Nick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kumagoro
    now does this mean that when something collides something vibrates?
    well arnt there lots of arcade machines which vibrated for example rad mobile, chase HQ etc.
    Yes, it does mean that.

    And yes, there were lots of games that used a vibration type technology, but in this case I think that the patent and lawsuit mean that Sony used THE technology that Immersion had patented, not just A technology similar to it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dareos View Post
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    No more Mr Nice Guy. Nick's Avatar
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    Swafe, effectively, yes, Sony have an injunction served against them stopping sales of anything that uses Immersion's patent. So that's the PS1, PSONE, PS2, Dual Shock and 47 games that utilise tactile feedback technology banned from sale.

    It's highly likely that Sony will post a bond to the US Courts, which will allow the units to continue to be sold whilst they lodge an appeal, so we probably won't see the PS range disappear from our shelves until Sony have appealed.

    If they lose the appeal, then as long as they buy a license, the PS range will carry on being sold. Of course, if they don't buy a license, they'll have to withdraw the range.

    One can only speculate how much Immersion might be thinking of charging Sony for a license now....
    Quote Originally Posted by Dareos View Post
    "OH OOOOHH oOOHHHHHHHOOHHHHHHH FILL ME WITH YOUR.... eeww not the stuff from the lab"

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    Goron goron Kumagoro's Avatar
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    Some of the things listed in the patent, i would have thought should not be patentable.

    I had a friend who worked in the brit patent office and he said that many patents which are awarded in the US often are rejected in the UK.

    I really hope software patents arnt allowed i can just see it after time getting silly and anything can be patented.

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    If your 5555... Swafe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick
    Swafe, effectively, yes, Sony have an injunction served against them stopping sales of anything that uses Immersion's patent. So that's the PS1, PSONE, PS2, Dual Shock and 47 games that utilise tactile feedback technology banned from sale.

    It's highly likely that Sony will post a bond to the US Courts, which will allow the units to continue to be sold whilst they lodge an appeal, so we probably won't see the PS range disappear from our shelves until Sony have appealed.

    If they lose the appeal, then as long as they buy a license, the PS range will carry on being sold. Of course, if they don't buy a license, they'll have to withdraw the range.

    One can only speculate how much Immersion might be thinking of charging Sony for a license now....

    Ahh, I see.

    It appears Sony have lodged an appeal already, so until its settled they still can sell the PS line of stuff.....Immsersion no doubt will charge them a bomb for liscencing it, no doubt Sony will want to make Dual shock 3 for the PS3, but for the price (It will be in the millions no doubt) it would probably benefit sony just to make their own rumble technology?
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    Goron goron Kumagoro's Avatar
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    or they could buy out immersion and sack them all hahaha.

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    No more Mr Nice Guy. Nick's Avatar
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    Oh, and on the timing of this, Immersion have been working on their 'haptic' technology since '93, long before Dual Shock was out.

    And, as far as I'm aware, the tactile technology is actually within the console itself, as well as in the rumble pad, hence why 47 games were banned too as these contained software to enable tactile feedback on early PS1 units.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dareos View Post
    "OH OOOOHH oOOHHHHHHHOOHHHHHHH FILL ME WITH YOUR.... eeww not the stuff from the lab"

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