Philips Electronics v Nintendo of Europe June 2014

Koninklijke Philips Electronics N.V. v Nintendo of Europe GmbH June 2014

Last week the Patents Court held that Nintendo were guilty of infringing two patents held by Phillips, the patents related to a hand-held pointing device used to control electrical apparatus.

The facts

Phillips originally brought an action against Nintendo for infringement of three of their patents:

  • The first patent concerned a method and apparatus for controlling the movement of a virtual body in a computer generated environment (patent 484).
  • The second and third patents related to a hand-held pointing device used to control electrical apparatus (patents 498 and 650).

Nintendo argued that their Wii and Wii U systems did not infringe any of the patents and counterclaimed for revocation for all three of Phillips Patents!, luckily for Phillips they had already applied for conditional amendments for all three patents…phew!

The result

It transpired that the 484 patent was in fact invalid, the 498 and 650 patents also turned out to be invalid as granted but the amended 498 and 650 patents were deemed valid, based on this, Phillips were successful in their action for infringement of the hand held pointing device (an example of which was illustrated by the Wii Tennis game).

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