Feeds

JPEG patent holder renews royalty offensive

'We will never Forgent'

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Forgent Networks, which two years ago said it would pursue royalties on its JPEG patent, has renewed its offensive.

The compression patent used in the popular image format, (USPTO 4,698,672, or '672), was filed by Compression Labs in October 1986. This dormant company was acquired by Forgent Networks in 1997. In June 2002, Forgent announced that it had "sole and exclusive right to use and license all the claims" of '672 in all fields except satellite broadcasting. Widespread alarm and dismay accompanied the news that Forgent had persuaded Sony Corporation to pay $15m for use of the fees.

The furore died down after the ISO threatened to withdraw standards-blessing from the format. ISO can only endorse royalty-free formats. However, Forgent claims to have netted $90m in various licensing royalties since then.

Today's suit targets thirty industry refuseniks who Forgent says have rejected its royalty terms. These include Japanese consumer electronics giants JVC, Matsushita (Panasonic) and Ricoh; camera companies Fuji Photo Film, Agfa, Eastman Kodak; PC makers IBM, Dell, Apple, HP, Toshiba and Gateway; Xerox and Palm; and software companies including Adobe, Macromedia, and JASC.

In the US, patents expire twenty years from the date of filing, so Forgent has only two years to make good. ®

Related stories

JPEGs are not free: Patent holder pursues IP grab
JPEG guardians vow to defend free images
No more JPEGs – ISO to withdraw image standard
What's wrong with this JPEG picture?

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
The 'fun-nification' of computer education – good idea?
Compulsory code schools, luvvies love it, but what about Maths and Physics?
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Yes, yes, Steve Jobs. Look what I'VE done for you lately – Tim Cook
New iPhone biz baron points to Apple's (his) greatest successes
Lords take revenge on REVENGE PORN publishers
Jilted Johns and Jennies with busy fingers face two years inside
Sysadmin with EBOLA? Gartner's issued advice to debug your biz
Start hoarding cleaning supplies, analyst firm says, and assume your team will scatter
Edward who? GCHQ boss dodges Snowden topic during last speech
UK spies would rather 'walk' than do 'mass surveillance'
Doctor Who's Flatline: Cool monsters, yes, but utterly limp subplots
We know what the Doctor does, stop going on about it already
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.