Nintendo faces Switch patent infringement investigation in the US

Nintendo faces Switch patent infringement investigation in the US”

The Nintendo Switch has been out for over a year and it has been quite the success story for the Japanese gaming giant, thanks to high-profile games like The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and Super Mario Odyssey, but also because of its hybrid nature made possible by the dock and the detachable Joy-Con controllers.

Today, the US International Trade Commission (ITC) announced that it's going to take a closer look at "certain portable gaming console systems with attachable handheld controllers and components thereof" produced by Nintendo.

Gamevice, Inc. creates attachable controls for smartphones and tablets, which allow mobile gamers to have a more console-like experience. Though Commission doesn't name the Switch directly, it does say that it's investigating "certain portable gaming console systems with attachable handheld controllers and components thereof", and named Nintendo as the respondent in the complaint, leaving pretty much nothing to the imagination.

"The investigation is based on a complaint filed by Gamevice, Inc., of Simi Valley, CA, on March 30, 2018". Once the USITC completes its investigation, the USITC will determine whether a violation has occurred and may issue a cease and desist to Nintendo to prevent the Switch from entering the US.

Nintendo declined to comment on the investigation. The USITC's Chief Administrative Law Judge will assign the case to one of the USITC's administrative law judges (ALJ), who will schedule and hold an evidentiary hearing.

"The USITC will make a final determination in the investigation at the earliest practicable time". If those are granted, then they would temporarily prevent Nintendo from importing Switch consoles into the USA, halting sales altogether. We'll know at some point in the next 45 days when the commission expects to wrap up their investigation, at which time we can expect to hear their findings.

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