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Cable Technology Feature Article

June 05, 2012

Patent Battle Between Cisco, TiVo Heats Up in Texas Legal Action over DVR Technology

By Ed Silverstein, TMCnet Contributor

In the latest twist of a continuing courtroom battle, TiVo has sued Cisco (News - Alert) Systems over a patent dispute involving digital video recorder (DVR) technology. TiVo wants compensatory damages and to have its other legal demands met.

The lawsuit filed in Marshall, Texas federal court comes just a few days after Cisco filed its own lawsuit against TiVo (News - Alert) regarding the patents.

In the most recent court action, TiVo claims set-top boxes manufactured by Cisco violate patents for DVR services, and infringe upon TiVo’s patents, according to Bloomberg News.

Cisco – whose customers include Verizon Communications and Time Warner (News - Alert) Cable Inc. – claims in a May 30 legal action, its technology does not infringe upon the four TiVo patents.

Over recent years, TiVo has sued several parties to get compensated for its patented technology. TiVo first offered DVR in 2007, and pay TV providers soon offered similar, competing products. But the rival products led to TiVo filing several lawsuits. It has claimed patent infringement. Recently, Cisco officials were subpoenaed in TiVo’s patent suits against Verizon and AT&T (News - Alert).

In a related matter, TiVo got more than $500 million from Dish Network Corp. when resolving another lawsuit. AT&T will pay at least $215 million to settle its patent case with TiVo, according to a report from TMCnet. Under the terms of the agreement, AT&T will pay TiVo $51 million upfront and quarterly payments over the next six years, totaling $215 million. AT&T may be forced to add to the payments if the company gets more U-Verse TV subscribers to sign up for the service.

Edited by Brooke Neuman

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