Microsoft sues Immersion

Written by Brett Thomas

June 20, 2007 | 14:02

Tags: #immersion #rumble

Companies: #microsoft #sony

Sometimes, something is so strange that you just have to think for a minute to wrap your head around it. First, Immersion develops force-feedback controllers. Sony and Microsoft use the technology in their systems. Immersion sues both. Microsoft settles for $26m, but Sony fights and loses for $90m. With me so far? Seems easy, right? So why is Microsoft now suing Immersion?

Because Immersion won against Sony.

In a soap-opera like twist, apparently Microsoft made an interesting deal with Immersion when it settled. When MS forked over the $26m, it entered into a contract - if Immersion then won its suit against Sony, MS would recoup $15m of that $26m. Apparently, Immersion isn't thinking it's such a great deal now, but it was quite eager at the time.

And it doesn't even stop there - Microsoft is now accusing Immersion of lying about the amount of the settlement with Sony (which was done behind closed doors), choosing a ticket price below $100m. Why, one might ask? Because apparently Microsoft was due an extra "kicker" if the victory over Sony crossed the $100m threshold.

Nobody is really sure exactly why a deal like this would take place, but there are certainly some ideas that I've come up with. You'll see them soon enough - but for now, why don't you tell us some of your own theories in our forums.
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