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Wii controller lawsuit costs Nintendo $21m

Texas firms sues Nintendo, and wins!

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Nintendo has vowed to fight a court order demanding it pay $21m (£10.7m/€13.5m) to a US gaming company for patent infringements associated with controllers for the Wii and GameCube.

Although specific details of the violation of Anascape's intellectual property rights haven’t been disclosed yet, the US court found that Nintendo had trampled over 12 different patents owned by the Texas-based firm.

The company owns a number of controller patents, ranging from one detailing a stick-type remote controller with analogue pressure sensor(s) through to a patent for a regular-looking game controller with analogue pressure sensors.

Several Nintendo controllers were implicated in the case, including the Wii Classic controller and GameCube control. Nintendo is thought safe on the motion-sensor side of things though, because the patent infringements don’t relate to any accelerometer technology used in Wii controllers.

But a Nintendo spokesman has since claimed that, after it appeals the ruling, the company expects the damages awarded to be “significantly” reduced.

At least Nintendo’s executives can use the boxing game on Wii Sports to vent some of their money-loss rage.

Microsoft was also sued by Anascape, the smaller company's lawyers said, but settled out of court ahead of the Nintendo trial. The terms of the settlement were not disclosed.

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