Feeds

EchoStar ordered to pay TiVo (another) $200m

Five years, $400m in fines. And counting

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

Dish Network and its sister company EchoStar must cough up an extra $200 million to TiVo for continuing to offer DVR functionality in their set-top boxes after being slapped with a court injunction.

The award comes after TiVo successfully argued to a Texas judge in June that EchoStar was in contempt of an order to disable its digital video recording technology that allegedly violates a TiVo patent.

After Echo had lost the original infringement case filed by TiVo in 2004, the company tried reprogramming its set-top boxes with a workaround for the disputed technology. But the court ruled that EchoStar's changes weren't suitably different to avoid the injunction.

TiVo then argued it was entitled to all of EchoStar's DVR profits made during the period it was in contempt of the injunction - a figure TiVo estimated is at least $974.5m.

EchoStar countered that it had acted in good faith to redesign the set-top boxes and that sanctions are unwarranted in the case. It said any harm to TiVo would be fully compensated by a jury's previously decided infringement fine of $1.25 per customer per month, for a total of $114.8m extra damages.

On Friday, US District Judge David Folsom said he was unconvinced by either party's suggested awards: "On the one hand, EchoStar's suggested $1.25 royalty rate is inadequate. It would merely extend the jury's royalty over the contempt period, effectively turning this Court's injunction into a compulsory license," the judge said.

"On the other hand, TiVo's suggested disgorgement of nearly $1 billion is unreasonable under the circumstances of the case," he added.

Instead, Folsom decided a rate of $2.25 per DVR subscriber per month was appropriate, for an estimated total of $192.7m. Combined with the original damages, Echo must pay TiVo about $390m.

Dish said while it would appeal the ruling, it was pleased the court didn't agree with TiVo's request for a $1bn fine.

EchoStar advertisements ruled 'distasteful'

Judge Folsom also registered his disapproval that Dish Network had begun running an ad campaign touting its DVR service as "better than TiVo" while continuing to violate the TiVo patent.

Folsom called the advertisements "distasteful" in his ruling, but said the company may have genuinely believed in its design-around efforts. ®

HP ProLiant Gen8: Integrated lifecycle automation

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
White? Male? You work in tech? Let us guess ... Twitter? We KNEW it!
Grim diversity numbers dumped alongside Facebook earnings
HP, Microsoft prove it again: Big Business doesn't create jobs
SMEs get lip service - what they need is dinner at the Club
Bose says today is F*** With Dre Day: Beats sued in patent battle
Music gear giant seeks some of that sweet, sweet Apple pie
Amazon Reveals One Weird Trick: A Loss On Almost $20bn In Sales
Investors really hate it: Share price plunge as growth SLOWS in key AWS division
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.