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Microsoft Sued For Alleged Kinect Patent Violation

The Ohio-based Impulse Technology has sued Microsoft, claiming that the motion-sensing Kinect hardware violates seven of its patents relating to tracking users movements for the purpose of playing video games without a controller.

Tom Curtis

July 22, 2011

1 Min Read

The Ohio-based Impulse Technology has sued Microsoft, claiming that the motion-sensing Kinect hardware for Xbox 360 violates seven of its patents relating to tracking users' movements for the purpose of playing video games without a controller. Impulse's patents in question describe a "system and method for tracking and assessing movement skills in multidimensional space," and an "education system challenging a subject’s physiologic and kinesthetic systems to synergistically enhance cognitive function," reports Patent Arcade. Impulse says that it had notified Microsoft of these patents previously, telling the company that the patents covered a "wide variety of games where the movement of a player is tracked in three dimensions ... and certain exercise games where the motion of the player is tracked to effect movement of a virtual avatar, and the exertion of the user is monitored, including where the tracking of the player is done by use of a camera." The company claims that Microsoft is willfully infringing on these patents, and Impulse now seeks a permanent injunction, damages, interest, attorney's fees and costs. Impulse also named eight Kinect game developers, including EA, Sega, and Konami, as defendants in the case, accusing them of making, selling and importing into the U.S. games that infringe on its patents.

About the Author(s)

Tom Curtis

Blogger

Tom Curtis is Associate Content Manager for Gamasutra and the UBM TechWeb Game Network. Prior to joining Gamasutra full-time, he served as the site's editorial intern while earning a degree in Media Studies at the University of California, Berkeley.

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