Inventor Seijiro Tomita is accusing Nintendo Co. of infringing one of his patents with its popular 3DS handheld gaming system in a trial that began Monday.

Tomita developed technology that allowed users to see 3-D images without having to wear 3-D glasses. In 2003, he had a meeting at Nintendo’s Kyoto headquarters, where he displayed the technology for seven officials in the hopes of getting licensee partners while he waited for his patent application to be processed (the U.S. granted his patent in 2008, and Tomita also holds one in Japan). Four of those seven officials later helped develop the 3DS, which came out in 2011. That same year, Tomita sued the company for patent infringement. An expert for the plaintiff estimated that Tomita is entitled to $9.80 out of $169.99 for every 3DS sold.

But Nintendo claims that its meeting with Tomita was one of many it had with vendors of 3-D technology, including a meeting with Sharp Corp., which eventually made the 3DS’ display. The company also argues that it does not use the key aspect of Tomita’s technology—“cross-point” information, a feature that displays 3-D images on different screens.

Read more at Thomson Reuters.


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