The Future of Mobile

ZeniMax is suing Samsung, just months after Oculus victory

Tyrone Stewart

Samsung Gear VRZeniMax, which was awarded $500m (£395m at the time) in case against Facebook’s Oculus earlier this year,  has turned its attention to Samsung over its Gear VR headset.

The lawsuit filed alleges that Samsung knowingly profited from ZeniMax’s trade secrets because, as its Gear VR is powered by Oculus, it would have been aware of the lawsuit involving Oculus yet continued to develop its headset, as Polygon initially reported. The Gear VR headset was still in a development stage when the lawsuit against Oculus was originally filed.

In addition to that claim, ZeniMax accuses John Carmack, former technical director of ZeniMax-owned id Software, of providing Oculus’ co-founder Palmer Luckey with access to its ‘VR-related intellectual property’, despite a binding non-disclosure agreement (NDA). The access to this information, and the subsequent use of it by Oculus, led to the initial lawsuit filed against the VR company.

 “Samsung, which had desired to release a mobile VR headset and sell greater quantities of its mobile devices, was aware, or reasonably should have been aware, that Oculus acquired its VR technology through this breach of the NDA and in violation of ZeniMax’s intellectual property rights,” the lawsuit filing reads. “Despite this awareness, Samsung nonetheless obtained and used ZeniMax’s VR technology from Oculus, without ZeniMax’s consent.”

As a result of Samsung’s initial and continued use of its intellectual property, ZeniMax is seeking “damages and injunctive relief that will fairly and fully compensate it for Samsung’s infringement and misappropriation” of its technology and trade secrets, as well as its “unfair competition, its unjust enrichment, and for Samsung’s continued interference with contractual obligations that Oculus, Luckey and Carmack” owe to the company.