Recently, a Sony patent caught the attention of many players, but not for the reason everyone expected. The company proposes a kind of universal control to manage multimedia content on various PlayStation consoles.
The issue is that the document claims that it would also be compatible with other home entertainment systems "from different albeit inferior manufacturer." This is a clear reference to products from other brands, so it is impossible not to think of Nintendo, Microsoft, and Xbox.
Patent experts have spoken about the issue and have stated that this practice by Sony is nothing new. In fact, Florian Mueller, in charge of the Foss Patents blog, launched a harsh criticism against the Japanese company, as he believes that their comments are childish and out of place.
Sony faces criticism for disparaging its competitors
Mueller raised his voice and stated that Sony has belittled and denigrated Nintendo and Xbox for over a decade in their patents. He shared a list of documents where the Japanese company attacks their main competitors in the video game industry.
The patent expert claims that this has been happening at least since 2011. In the documents cited by Mueller, Sony also refers to other companies as different, albeit inferior, manufacturers. For this reason, the source believes that Sony is being childish and unprofessional.
"Calling competitors generally inferior is gratuitous, stupid, childish, and unprofessional. Even if those manufacturers were inferior, it would not mean that whatever invention a given Sony patent purports to describe —here, a universal controller— is by definition innovative and deserving of patent protection.
Sony is obviously the kind of client many patent attorneys want. If a small company went to the same patent attorneys and wanted them to file patent specifications that contain such an outrageous passage, most patent attorneys would decline to attach their names to it.
If Sony wants to engage in comparative advertising, it can do so elsewhere. Gamers are not going to make purchasing decisions based on the language Sony uses in its patent applications," Mueller declared.
This caught the attention of many players, who believe that Sony has had an arrogant attitude towards their competitors for years.
For more than a decade, #Sony's #patent applications have been disparaging #Microsoft and #Nintendo as 'inferior manufacturer[s]' of video game consoles: gratuitous, childish, unprofessionalhttps://t.co/P2ftyIOIC0#PlayStation #Xbox #consolewars— Florian Mueller (@FOSSpatents) April 9, 2023
Dozens of examples since 2011.