Fitbit hit with lawsuit over haptic feedback patents

Fitbit has been hit with a lawsuit from Immersion, a developer of haptic feedback technology, claiming that the Alta HR and Charge 2 maker has infringed on its patents.

Immersion asks for Fitbit to cease manufacturing of all infringing devices, which, we suspect, includes all fitness trackers currently on the market. Fitbit makes use of haptic feedback for notifications, breathing exercises, and touch control, found on all trackers.

See Also: Apple drives wearables to $6 billion in first quarter sales

“We are disappointed that Fitbit rejected our numerous attempts to negotiate a reasonable license for Fitbit’s products, but it is imperative that we protect our intellectual property both within the U.S. and through the distribution chain in China,” said Immersion CEO, Victor Viegas.

It should be noted it is not the first time Immersion has taken a large tech company to court over haptic feedback technology. In 2016, it took Apple to court over its 3D Touch technology; some media outlets have labelled Immersion a patent troll.

It has taken Motorola and Sony to court as well, over similar alleged infringements.

Fitbit has been struggling to maintain its dominance in the wearable market, slipping to third in sales to Apple and Xiaomi in the first quarter of 2017. There have been rumors that the company is struggling to build a smartwatch to compete with the Apple Watch, and may be looking at the health industry as a possible route to increase profits.

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