Nintendo has been on the receiving end of a patent lawsuit from Tomita Technologies. The focus is the glasses-free 3D technology present in the Nintendo 3DS and 3DS XL handhelds. Following a jury decision, a United States federal judge has now set the amount that Nintendo must pay Tomita for each unit sold.

The judgment amounts to 1.82 percent of the wholesale price of each unit sold throughout the handheld’s life. This is on top of a $15 million damage award that Nintendo has already been ordered to provide.

The presiding judge rejected a flat rate amount as it would have represented an “unearthed windfall” for Tomita. The percentage-based award means that the royalty will scale with the price of the 3DS and 3DS XL, both of which will no doubt drop in the future.

[Source: Law 360 via Joystiq, Engadget]


Our Take
This is ruling is similar to the one we saw during the Xbox 360/PlayStation 3 generation when Immersion sued both Microsoft and Sony over rumble in the controllers. Patent law is a powerful thing in the United States, even though we sometimes have a hard time weeding out the patent trolls from the truly wronged parties.