Patent Fight Over a High-Tech Basketball


     (CN) - One sports company sued another in a patent complaint over a high-tech basketball that contains software that allegedly measures trajectory and gives feedback to improve shooting and ball-handling skills.
     Pillar Vision, of Menlo Park, Calif., sued InfoMotion Sports Technologies, of Dublin, Ohio, in Birmingham, Ala., Federal Court. Pillar Vision's operations division, known as Noah Basketball, is based in Athens, Ala.
     At issue is InfoMotion's 94Fifty Smart Sensor basketball.
     Pillar Vision claims the 94Fifty violates its software patent.
     "Plaintiff Pillar Vision Applied is engaged in the design, development and delivery of apparatus and methods for sports training," the complaint states. "In furtherance of these efforts, Pillar Vision has developed and marketed a trajectory detection, analysis and feedback system that analyzes the trajectory of an object launched by a human and provides feedback information regarding the trajectory to the human."
     InfoMotion plugs its basketball on its website like this: "The 94Fifty Smart Sensor Basketball measures muscle memory that the human eye can't see, learns the strengths and weaknesses of players at any level, adapts as the player improves, and provides basic, intermediate, and advanced level training to build better shooting and ball-handling skills - fast. It's like having the best coaches in the world with you every day of the year."
     The ball is regulation size and weight, with software inside designed to give players instant feedback on shooting and dribbling flaws, according to the website.
     Pillar Vision claims the software system violates its patent.
     It seeks an injunction and treble damages.
     Pillar Vision is represented by Scott S. Brown with Maynard Cooper & Gale in Birmingham.
     InfoMotion did not respond to a request for comment.