Court rules for Immersion; Sony to pay up

Immersion sued the joy out of Sony's sticks back in 2002; new court ruling forces Sony to pay almost $27 million annually to the technology maker.


Sony's Dual Shock controllers are doing more than just rumbling around in gamers' hands these days. They're also shaking up a few corporate accounts. Earlier this week, a new court ruling in favor of technology company Immersion sent shock waves through the hallways of Sony.

San Jose-based Immersion, which owns the patent on technology used for the rumble feature in Sony's Dual Shock controllers, successfully sued the electronics giant for patent infringement in 2002. A jury ordered Sony to pay Immersion $82 million for three years' worth of damages.

On Monday, a California judge ordered Sony to pay Immersion a licensing fee of 1.37 percent per quarter based on the sales of PlayStation units, Dual Shock controllers, and a selection of PlayStation 2 games that use Immersion's technology.

Microsoft, which employs the same rumble technology in the controllers for its Xbox console, avoided a similar lawsuit in 2003 by signing a licensing deal with Immersion in an out-of-court settlement.

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