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Microsoft Sues Immersion Over Rumble Deal

Microsoft Sues Immersion Over Rumble Deal

June 18, 2007 | By Brandon Boyer

June 18, 2007 | By Brandon Boyer
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More: Console/PC

A new report has revealed that Microsoft is suing touch feedback technology developer and rumble technology patent holder Immersion for breach of contract, claiming the company has not paid Microsoft for "certain business and IP licensing arrangements."

According to CNET's a brief statement from Microsoft associate general counsel Steve Aeschbacher has clarified of the new lawsuit: "We entered into a binding licensing agreement with Immersion and are seeking to have that agreement honored."

Aeschbacher continued, "Microsoft licenses technology both in and out and relies on these agreements to be honored and enforced. Our request to the court is that all companies and industry partners should play by the same rules and that the binding agreement we signed with Immersion be honored."

The original suit dates back over five years, when Immersion filed patent infringement charges against not only Microsoft, but Sony as well, claiming it held the patent on force-feedback technology used in controllers and accessories for the Xbox, psOne, and PS2.

Microsoft settled with Immersion for $26 million a year later, for the rights to use feedback in its controllers, including in game controllers for the Xbox and Xbox 360.

The suit with Sony was settled this March, awarding the company $82 million plus $8.7 million in pre-judgment interest, and allowing SCE rights to "Immersion's patent portfolio". This most likely refers specifically to its previously touted "TouchSense" technology, which can support both vibration and gyroscopic movement in tandem, and can now, in theory, be used in Sony's Sixaxis PS3 controller.

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