Nintendo Obtains IA Labs Patent Portfolio Following Lawsuit Win

Balance board technology weighed in

Nintendo is often engaged in multiple patent disputes, in various cases surviving the challenges though — in notable examples such as the recent case against Tomita Technologies USA — can occasionally come out on the wrong side. Nintendo does have another success to report, however, with progress in the case involving IA Labs.

IA Labs claimed that technology in the Wii Fit board — primarily that of pressure points functioning as sensors — was violating one of its patents. The case was launched in 2010 but thrown out in Nintendo's favour in March 2012, before a subsequent appeal was also won by Nintendo. As detailed in a press release issued by Nintendo, IA Labs failed to pay the company's costs following that appeal ruling, and as a result Nintendo has now received its full patent catalogue as partial repayment.

Below is an extract from the press release.

IA Labs appealed the trial court’s ruling. The appeals court confirmed Nintendo’s win in June 2013. IA Labs was further ordered to pay Nintendo additional costs incurred in defending the appeal. IA Labs did not pay the amount due, so a sheriff’s sale was conducted to sell IA Labs’ remaining assets, including its patent portfolio. Nintendo obtained IA Labs’ entire patent portfolio at that sale as partial repayment for litigation costs.

“Nintendo’s track record demonstrates that we vigorously defend patent lawsuits, like the IA Labs lawsuit, when we believe we have not infringed another party’s patent. This includes holding those who sue Nintendo responsible for the costs and expenses incurred in patent litigation,” said Richard Medway, Nintendo of America’s vice president and deputy general counsel. “Nintendo has a long history of developing innovative products while respecting the intellectual property rights of others.”

So there you have it, one more case in Nintendo's favour. It can't win them all, but was proven right this time around.