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Sony, Nintendo sued in console controller patent clash

Up to a point, Lord Copper

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A US company has filed a lawsuits against both Nintendo and Sony, alleging that the controllers that go with the companies’ games consoles trample over its intellectual property rights for console to controller connection.

The dispute was filed at the US District Court for Western Pennsylvania late December 2007 by Copper Innovations Group (CIG). Its patent for a “Hand Held Computer Input Apparatus and Method” was filed back in 1996 and, according to a Gamespot story, describes a way of connecting devices to a games system and for sorting their inputs by means of hardware identification numbers tied to each transmission.

CIG has implicated a host of controllers in the dispute, including the Wii’s Remote and Nunchuck, and the PS3's SixAxis controller. An additional Blu-ray remote control is also named in the lawsuit.

However, there's no mention of the Xbox 360 controller in the complaint. Is a fresh lawsuit coming, or has Microsoft licensed CIG's patent?

Not only is CIG seeking damages and legal fees, but it’s also seeking an injunction against both companies to stop them from infringing on the patent in the future. It wants a jury trial.

The SixAxis is no stranger to legal disputes. The controller has already been at the centre of a legal dispute with vibration firm Immersion over the inclusion of a rumble feature in the device.

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