If you're familiar with the word "haptics," you're familiar with the company Immersion. They're the company that seems to own every possible patent having to do with the haptics space, and any kind of tactile response or force feedback device usually involves patents that were first licensed from the company. So, in some ways, it's pretty impressive that Sony has gotten as far as it has apparently without licensing patents from the company. A court has found, however, that Sony's force feedback controllers for the PlayStation and PlayStation 2 violate Immersion's patents and not only have they ordered the company to pay $90 million in damages, but also told Sony it can no longer sell either console in the US. Sony, of course, will appeal the ruling, which will allow them to keep selling the consoles in the meantime. Of course, this is the same Sony that keeps insisting on the importance of stricter intellectual property enforcement to teach violators a lesson. Funny what comes back to bite you...
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