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Valve sued by Immersion over Steam Deck and Index VR's controller

Valve Software is facing a new lawsuit accusing the company of patent infringement. Immersion, a Florida-based corporation developer and licensor of touch-feedback technology, filed the case in federal court on May 15.

The lawsuit claims that Valve's Index VR headset and Steam Deck violate seven of Immersion's haptic technology patents by incorporating touch feedback in certain games. Although Valve does not develop many titles, the listed titles in the suit include popular games like Apex Legends, Half-Life: Alyx, Star Wars: Jedi Survivor, War Thunder, and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II.

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Immersion holds numerous patents in haptic technology, providing tactile feedback in response to user actions. If you've ever experienced a Nintendo Switch controller vibrating during gameplay, that was made possible through Immersion's licensed technology.

In its legal action, Immersion is seeking damages to compensate for Valve's infringement, royalty payments, and a court order to prevent Valve from using the patented technologies in question.

It is worth noting that Immersion has gained a reputation as a "patent troll" over the past two decades. The company acquired many haptic-feedback patents through acquisitions, which has led to lawsuits against various technology giants. The company has previously sued Apple, Sony, Microsoft, and Meta over similar patent infringement claims.

Valve has not yet responded to the lawsuit.

Source: The Verge, the filing (PDF)

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