Nintendo chief Satoru Iwata to miss AGM over illness as UK patent case is lost

Oliver Smith
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Nintendo lost a UK court case against Philips over motion tracking technology
Nintendo's chief executive Satoru Iwata announced yesterday that he had had surgery to remove a tumour in his bile duct and would need more time to return to work.

Nintendo also lost a UK court case against electronics giant Philips yesterday, over the motion tracking technology it used in its Wii game console that Philips said breaches its patents. High court judge Colin Birss said: “The common general knowledge did not include a device combining a physical motion sensor with a camera and the reasons advanced by Nintendo for putting those two sensors together in one unit are unconvincing.”

Nintendo is set to appeal against the decision and it is not yet clear what penalties it could face if this is unsuccessful.

On his condition, Iwata told shareholders in a letter that he would miss Friday’s annual general meeting. He had surgery last week and said he “came through it well”.

“I have already resumed my business by email and by other means, but it is anticipated that a little more time is needed for me to return to my regular work schedule,” he added.

He had also missed the E3 video game conference, earlier this month in Los Angeles, citing health reasons.

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