Video services

Court Reopens EchoStar-TiVo Patent Suit

A legal setback for TiVo Inc. (Nasdaq: TIVO) in its protracted DVR patent war with EchoStar Corp. LLC (Nasdaq: SATS) and Dish Network LLC (Nasdaq: DISH) leads today's cable news roundup.

  • TiVo stock took a hit today on news that a Texas court is reopening a patent-infringement lawsuit that EchoStar filed against TiVo in 2005. That one is separate from TiVo's "Time Warping" suit against Charlie Ergen's crew. (See PTO Affirms TiVo's 'Time Warp' and TiVo Shares Dive on Court Decision.)

  • Canadian MSO Shaw Communications Inc. is putting its usage-based billing (UBB) policy for Internet services on hold while it initiates a "consultation process" with customers through March to vet "a solution that works for everyone." BCE Inc. (Bell Canada) (NYSE/Toronto: BCE), meanwhile, has admitted that its Internet meter isn't even working properly. (See O, Canada! Netflix Streaming Gets a Reprieve.)

  • The Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers (SCTE) will bring out some big guns at next month's Canadian Summit in Toronto, scoring Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) EVP and CTO Tony Werner to deliver a keynote on the topic of "Broadband Video: Challenge or Opportunity?" (See Comcast CTO to Keynote Canada Confab.)

  • Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) is generating local headlines for switching to an all-digital platform, as it prepares its "Project Calvary" conversion in Alabama and North Mississippi and completes the switch in Georgia. (See Comcast Back-Burners SDV (Again) and Comcast's $1B Bandwidth Plan .)

  • Fox Broadcasting Co. is leaning hard on its affiliates for a cut of the retransmission consent revenue they collect from cable operators. (See TV Contract Disputes Heat Up.)

  • It's hard to find much opposition to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) 's proposal to use the Universal Service Fund to subsidize broadband Internet subscriptions, though Free Press called the move a "baby step." (See Genachowski Tees Up USF Reform.)

  • They take cable theft pretty seriously in upstate New York, where a man was locked up for posing as another man to order adult movies and other programming from Time Warner Cable Inc. (NYSE: TWC).

  • A YouTube Inc. video of the first TV appearance from Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) founder Steve Jobs is burning up the Web today, and reminds us of Noah Wiley's portrayal of him in Pirates of Silicon Valley.

    — Steve Donohue, Special to Light Reading Cable

  • Jeff Baumgartner 12/5/2012 | 5:11:48 PM
    re: Court Reopens EchoStar-TiVo Patent Suit

    Looks like Motorola Mobility has thrown its legal hat into the ring too after filing a suit against TiVo late last week, asserting three patents that, it claims, pre-dates the TiVo Time Warping patent.

    Moto is joining the battle since it's a key box supplier to Verizon, which is the target of another TiVo patent suit that also targets AT&T. 

    Microsoft has also filed suit against TiVo, coming to the defense of AT&T, which, of course, is a big Mediaroom customer.

    We might have to create a matrix to keep track of all this DVR-related suing and counter-suing.





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