Judge recommends import ban to the U.S. of some Xbox 360 models

Mo Choudhury May 24, 2012 0
Judge recommends import ban to the U.S. of some Xbox 360 models

The lawsuits and counter lawsuits continue.  Microsoft is facing an import ban on the 4Gb and 250GB versions of the Xbox 360 models into the U.S. after U.S. International Trade Commission administrative law judge David P. Shaw found Microsoft in violation of 4 Motorola patents relating to secure wireless communication and transmission of video content between controller devices and game consoles.

Microsoft was found to infringe on the patents last month but the recommendation for the import ban was issued on Monday.

Microsoft argued that banning the Xbox 360 in the U.S. would be contrary to the public interest  because it would leave consumers of video game consoles with only two options to satisfy their needs: the Sony Playstation 3 and the Nintendo Wii.  However, Judge Shaw declared Microsoft’s argument “is not persuasive.”  He stated that,” It has not been alleged or shown that Sony or Nintendo would fail to meet the demand for consumer video gaming consoles in the event that an exclusion order [was] issued.” Moreover, there is, however, “a strong public interest in enforcing intellectual property rights; not enforcing those rights in light of a potential economic impact occurs only in exceptional circumstances,” he said.

Microsoft released a statement saying, “The recommendation by the administrative law judge is the first step in the process leading to the Commission’s final ruling. We remain confident the Commission will ultimately rule in Microsoft’s favor in this case and that Motorola will be held to its promise to make its standard essential patents available on fair and reasonable terms.”

The full  ITC  now has until August 23rd to decide whether or not to follow the recommendation by Judge Shaw.  If the commission lets the decision stand as the official ruling of the ITC, then President Barack Obama will have 60 days to review the decision. If the Administration signs off on the verdict, then a ban would come into effect.

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