TiVo Wins a Preliminary Patent Ruling in the ITC Against #Comcast

By Joseph Mandour on June 16, 2017

TiVo and Rovi (which purchased TiVo for $1.1 billion dollars last year) won an initial patent ruling in the International Trade Commission against Comcast. In the complaint against Comcast, TiVo claimed that Comcast had violated six patents. The ruling finds that Comcast, and its hardware partners Arris and Technicolor, had violated two patents held by TiVo.

The ruling is the latest development in a series of ongoing lawsuits between Comcast and TiVo. In addition to the ITC complaint, TiVo is in the midst of federal litigation against Comcast. TiVo sued Comcast and its top suppliers in 2016 for allegedly infringing 14 patents. The case is being heard in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas. The ITC ruling is a positive step for TiVo in resolving the federal dispute with Comcast. The ITC ruling could lead to a license from TiVo to Comcast to avoid what could amount to treble damages in the District Court if it rules in favor of TiVo.

According to Samir Armaly, Rovi’s executive VP of intellectual property and licensing for Rovi Corp, Comcast had licensed Rovi’s technology for a decade, but chose to continue using the technology without renewing a license.

Analysts expect that Comcast will contest the ITC ruling. The cable giant has already counter sued TiVo, filing the lawsuit in 2016. In the lawsuit, Comcast accuses TiVo of breaching its contract. According to Comcast, TiVo violated the terms of s licensing deal by filing in Texas instead of New York. Furthermore, Comcast stated to a New York federal court that Rovi breached the terms of their contract when they brought the dispute to the International Trade Commission.

TiVo has a long history of aggressively protecting its patents through litigation. Between TiVo and Rovi, they hold roughly 6,000 patents across a number of technologies, including DVR functions, interactive program guides, and mobile device media processes.

Following the ITC decision, TiVo stock value jumped up by more than 17%. On Tuesday, May 30th, 2017, TiVo shares were trading for as high as $19.30 per share. At the time of the closing bell, TiVo shares were up 14% for the day, closing at $18.70.

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Posted in: Patent Infringement