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Facebook’s VR Venture Threatened With Injunction

Following a trial last month that ruled in their favor regarding claims of corporate espionage, video game publisher ZeniMax has now filed an injunction demanding all products using the infringing code be removed from sale.

It’s a dramatic step that could have dire consequences if it goes ahead.

Though one of the first to market, the Oculus Rift has quickly lost ground to both HTC’s Vive and Sony’s Playstation VR.

With Facebook already scaling back Oculus’ retail presence in recent months, an injunction would likely see them fall further behind their competition.

What’s more, if complied to in its current form, the legal demand could also affect the sales of Samsung’s Gear VR.

The filing demands that Oculus be “permanently enjoined, on a worldwide basis, from using…any of the Copyrighted Materials, including but not limited to (i) system software for Oculus PC (including the Oculus PC SDK); (ii) system software for Oculus Mobile (including the Oculus Mobile SDK); (iii) Oculus integration with the Epic Games Unreal Engine; and (iv) Oculus integration with the Unity Technologies Unity Game Engine.”

Every single Samsung Gear VR unit bears the “Powered by Oculus VR” tag-line and that could well see it forced off shelves if the injunction is enforced.

ChannelNews has reached out to Samsung for clarification.

In a statement, Facebook has called the lawsuit “legally flawed and factually unwarranted.”

Back at the conclusion of last month’s court battle, which saw Facebook-owned VR player penalised $500 million, Oculus spokespeople indicated the company was readying an appeal.

“The heart of this case was about whether Oculus stole ZeniMax’s trade secrets, and the jury found decisively in our favor,” an Oculus spokesperson told Polygon at the time.

“We’re obviously disappointed by a few other aspects of today’s verdict, but we are undeterred. Oculus products are built with Oculus technology. Our commitment to the long-term success of VR remains the same, and the entire team will continue the work they’ve done since day one – developing VR technology that will transform the way people interact and communicate,” they said.

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