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EA pledges not to sue over its accessibility patents and technologies

EA will not be submitting any lawsuit in opposition to different builders that use the patented accessibility mechanics it makes use of in its video games. The online game big has introduced that it is making a Patents Pledge, which provides rival builders free entry to any of its accessibility-related technologies. While not all gameplay mechanics are patented, some corporations have taken to ensuring rivals aren’t legally allowed to use their technologies. Critics condemn the follow, accusing the businesses of stifling creativity and innovation within the business. EA a minimum of will not be suing anyone that incorporate its accessibility options of their video games, together with Apex Legends’ “ping” system.

The function provides gamers in the identical workforce a approach to talk with one another with out utilizing voice chat. They can merely faucet buttons to inform their teammates the place they’re on a map, to alert others of a risk or to tag targets. Supposedly, Epic Games borrowed Apex’s ping system for Fortnite. The Patents Pledge additionally covers a minimum of 4 extra EA options, three of which make video video games extra accessible to gamers with imaginative and prescient points. Those technologies, already in use within the Madden NFL and FIFA franchises, can routinely detect colours and then modify their brightness and distinction to make them extra seen. 

The final patent within the 5 EA particularly talked about covers a expertise permitting gamers with listening to points to modify or create their very own music. EA says it’s going to add any future accessibility patents to the pledge and that it hopes the transfer can “encourage others to build new features that make video games more inclusive.”

Chris Bruzzo, EA’s EVP of Positive Play, Commercial and Marketing, mentioned in a press release: 

“At Electronic Arts, our mission is to encourage the world to play. We can solely make {that a} actuality if our video video games are accessible to all gamers. Our accessibility workforce has lengthy been dedicated to breaking down obstacles inside our video video games, however we understand that to drive significant change, we want to work collectively as an business to do higher for our gamers.

We hope builders will benefit from these patents and encourage those that have the resources, innovation and creativity to do as we’ve got by making their very own pledges that put accessibility first. We welcome collaboration with others on how we transfer the business ahead collectively.”

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