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Immersion want to help Sony PS3 rumble issue

by Steven Williamson on 22 May 2006, 12:14

Tags: PlayStation 3, Sony Computers Entertainment Europe (NYSE:SNE), PS3

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Rumble in the Jungle

Immersion Corporation have said that if Sony want to implement a rumble feature into the PS3 controllers they have experts "that would be happy to solve that problem for them."

It's a surprising offer from Immersion who sued Sony and Microsoft for using the 'haptic' technology in 2003. Whilst Microsoft settled out of court, Sony fought back but were ordered to pay Immersion more than $90 million in damages. If Sony want to take Immersion up on the offer it would mean they need to drop the appeal against the lawsuit and would need to become a licensee of its technology.

"When the appeal is completed, and if we win, then there will be an injunction and they will not be allowed to sell their products unless they have a license from Immersion. So this is a very high stakes game that they're playing... Clearly, with the lawsuit there's a serious risk that if they were to lose the appeal our injunction could be applied to the PS3 and they would not be able to sell the PS3 if it was found to be an infringing product," said Immersion CEO Victor Viegas.

Many people raised an eyebrow when they heard that the PS3 controllers would not feature rumble techology and, although Sony have said that "the new PS3 controller uses six axis motion sensors to move with the user's body; because of this sensitivity it can't use vibration," Immersion have said that the rumble technology could work alongside the tilt controller.

It appears that Sony have three choices:

1) Wait to see the outcome of the appeal against Immersion.

2) Work with Immersion to resolve the legal argument and bring the technology to the PS3 sooner rather than later.

3) Forget the whole idea of rumble technology and rely on the 'innovative' tilt function.

Source: GameDaily.biz and Games Industry.biz


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