TIVO lawsuit update (1 Viewer)

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Zero327

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Oct 8, 2006
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The Emerald City
If this verdict did anything...it was to give Charlie one more reason to sink Tivo's battleship, not hold hands and sing with them. If he takes out the company, by business if practical, by takeover if necessary he wins. The problem with buying out Tivo immediately is in the event the awarded amount is issued and isn't just paper money between companies, the company owners will pocket and run with it.

Charlie would have already bought them if he knew that $X million would be there in the event he bought them out. It'd be equivilant at that point to writing himself a check. This verdict also doesn't change that Tivo's entire business is on life-support, holding on for only a single patent. Someone is going to take them out, the question is who and how. If their business dissolves, the patent right become undefensible.
 
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Hall

SatelliteGuys Master
Feb 14, 2004
18,409
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If this verdict did anything...it was to give Charlie one more reason to sink Tivo's battleship, not hold hands and sing with them. If he takes out the company, by business if practical, by takeover if necessary he wins....
I suspect he'd love to buy them out and has probably been working on a plan to do so for quite some time.... The best part is how he'll start receiving checks from Directv, Comcast, and who knows who else. It's said that Scientific Atlanta, Pioneer (now Aptiva), Motorola, and others have licensed TiVo's technology in their DVRs but it could have been a one-time payment too.
 

Greg Bimson

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jan 21, 2004
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Tyralak said:
Just like how Tivo is credited for being the "Father of the DVR" even though Replay invented it. Not a completely analogus situation, but close enough.
TiVo was first to release a DVR for widespread distribution, and beat ReplayTV to market by a couple of months. TiVo had applied for their patent regarding their implementation of the Time Warp before the box was ever released, irregardless of ReplayTV's position in the market. Yes, ReplayTV existed and had DVR's in their plans before TiVo did, but ReplayTV did not get to market fast enough.
Zero327 said:
If this verdict did anything...it was to give Charlie one more reason to sink Tivo's battleship, not hold hands and sing with them. If he takes out the company, by business if practical, by takeover if necessary he wins. The problem with buying out Tivo immediately is in the event the awarded amount is issued and isn't just paper money between companies, the company owners will pocket and run with it.
I don't know who you work for, but I can guarantee you if the owners "pocket and run with" the judgment, the shareholders will sue them into oblivion.

Wait, don't you work for Dish Network?
Zero327 said:
Charlie would have already bought them if he knew that $X million would be there in the event he bought them out. It'd be equivilant at that point to writing himself a check. This verdict also doesn't change that Tivo's entire business is on life-support, holding on for only a single patent. Someone is going to take them out, the question is how. If their business dissolves, the patent right become undefensible.
Yeah, just like ReplayTV's patents will be undefensible. Hold the phone, DirecTV bought the ReplayTV patent portfolio for $36 million, which means there's defense somewhere.

And this is one patent that TiVo holds out of hundreds. Imagine if TiVo simply finds another TiVo patent Dish Network is using.

The best Dish Network can hope for is that the Supreme Court will listen to the appeal. If not, this will be over within months, and I swear it will get quite ugly.
 

goober

SatelliteGuys Pro
May 25, 2005
268
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TiVo was first to release a DVR for widespread distribution, and beat ReplayTV to market by a couple of months. TiVo had applied for their patent regarding their implementation of the Time Warp before the box was ever released, irregardless of ReplayTV's position in the market. Yes, ReplayTV existed and had DVR's in their plans before TiVo did, but ReplayTV did not get to market fast enough.I don't know who you work for, but I can guarantee you if the owners "pocket and run with" the judgment, the shareholders will sue them into oblivion.

Wait, don't you work for Dish Network?Yeah, just like ReplayTV's patents will be undefensible. Hold the phone, DirecTV bought the ReplayTV patent portfolio for $36 million, which means there's defense somewhere.

And this is one patent that TiVo holds out of hundreds. Imagine if TiVo simply finds another TiVo patent Dish Network is using.

The best Dish Network can hope for is that the Supreme Court will listen to the appeal. If not, this will be over within months, and I swear it will get quite ugly.
TIVO wants money (not viewers) I think a solution will be worked out quite soon!!
 

Greg Bimson

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jan 21, 2004
1,863
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goober said:
TIVO wants money (not viewers) I think a solution will be worked out quite soon!!
While I'd generally agree with your assessment, Dish Network has drawn a new line in the sand yesterday. By stating that they have downloaded software which does not infringe upon the Time Warp patent, Echostar is basically telling TiVo to shove off. TiVo may get their lump sum payment for infringement, but will not get per box licensing fees going forward if Echostar did find a workaround on the software.

If Dish Network did not find a workaround that no longer infringes, then TiVo will hold Echostar for a ransom amount to avert a shutoff of the DVR's. TiVo will march into the courtroom demanding Echostar cease and desist.

There comes a point in time where you decide what is best for your customers and shareholders. There isn't much in the way of wiggle room if Dish Network continues to march towards a cliff. It already happened on the distant network lawsuit, where Dish Network didn't settle in time to avert shutting off ALL of their subscribers from distant networks.

That fight was all about Dish Network, not their subscribers. And many of the subscribers were downright livid because they were actually legal. Dish Network tossed them aside.

I am not saying there will be a shut down. But I am saying the more Dish Network continues to press the appeals in the case and the more they draw TiVo's ire by trying to convince the court they are no longer infringing on the patents, the more TiVo will graduate from a ball pen hammer to a nail hammer then to a sledge hammer, just to smack down Dish Network.
 
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ArtWIS

SatelliteGuys Pro
May 20, 2005
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Ummm, the court did just rule against them and were they told to shut off DVRs ?

That may well happen when the district court re-instates the injunction. The appeals court did not overturn the judgement but sent it all back to the district court.
 

riffjim4069

SatelliteGuys Master
Supporting Founder
Apr 7, 2004
35,211
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While I'd generally agree with your assessment, Dish Network has drawn a new line in the sand yesterday. By stating that they have downloaded software which does not infringe upon the Time Warp patent, Echostar is basically telling TiVo to shove off. TiVo may get their lump sum payment for infringement, but will not get per box licensing fees going forward if Echostar did find a workaround on the software.

If Dish Network did not find a workaround that no longer infringes, then TiVo will hold Echostar for a ransom amount to avert a shutoff of the DVR's. TiVo will march into the courtroom demanding Echostar cease and desist.

There comes a point in time where you decide what is best for your customers and shareholders. There isn't much in the way of wiggle room if Dish Network continues to march towards a cliff. It already happened on the distant network lawsuit, where Dish Network didn't settle in time to avert shutting off ALL of their subscribers from distant networks.

That fight was all about Dish Network, not their subscribers. And many of the subscribers were downright livid because they were actually legal. Dish Network tossed them aside.

I am not saying there will be a shut down. But I am saying the more Dish Network continues to press the appeals in the case and the more they draw TiVo's ire by trying to convince the court they are no longer infringing on the patents, the more TiVo will graduate from a ball pen hammer to a nail hammer then to a sledge hammer, just to smack down Dish Network.
Greg, I must admit that I always enjoy reading your candid posts and replies regarding industry happenings...:hatsoff:
 

jacmyoung

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jun 30, 2007
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Sacramento, CA
Ok here is a strange one.

This article says that Echostar WON this case.

BetaNews | EchoStar wins partial reversal of TiVo verdict on DVR infringement

I don't get it...

Exactly how I read the news yesterday, and why the E* response. As long as E* can get around the software infringement, they will only have to pay the $94mill and be done with it, because all their hardware are fine.

So it comes to whether E* is bluffing about the new software or actually telling the truth. I am inclined to think the latter because too much is at stake for E* to bluff this time, as much a gambler as Charlie is he must have learned a lesson or two.

Of course Tivo can gather a bunch of poeple to investigate the new software and figure out if they can bring another lawsuit, but it will be costly and time consuming, probably more difficult to prove than the last one.

And in this process E* engineers must have also learned the importance of a patent and not treating it lightly, that includes patent every one of their own gigs to death, effectively shutting out anyone else who tries to come up with something similar. And when E* started their ad campaign of "better than Tivo" I smelled something was up. They are basically saying we have now more pattents than you, don't you ever think about getting one over us pal!

So Tivo is in a precarious position now, do they simply put all their eggs in one basket and rely on lawsuit to seek revenue, or do they actually do some R&D to improve their DVR's? Because if not when the dust settles, they may have another $100 mill (actually maybe much less when all legals are paid) in the bank, but no one will care for their DVR's any more because something better will be out there. But if they decide on a major DVR improvement, they must be very careful not to touch anything E* has patent on.
 
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foghorn2

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jan 29, 2006
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las vegas
That little networked ATSC DVR they showcased at CES should be a great leveraging tool to buy out Tivo. Then its a good thing Dish lost the software part because when they own it, they can go after cable for the very thing they got sued for, and then go after erecttv when their contract expires.

Go Charlie, we are rooting for you again!
 

Acteng

New Member
Feb 1, 2008
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Chicagoland
I think the Echostar/Sling TR-50 scares the crap out of Tivo. An HD DVR for the OTA crowd with NO FEES, external storage, and the option for video on demand services. Sounds like both companies underestimated the OTA market, especially with the analog shutdown a year away and more consumer awareness of HD availability.

Been hearing this a lot: "You mean I don't need cable/sat and I don't need to pay Tivo fees to get full HD and I can record and pause and skip over commercials?"

Go Echostar, get this box out on the market ASAP!
 

Greg Bimson

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jan 21, 2004
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jacmyoung said:
Exactly how I read the news yesterday, and why the E* response. As long as E* can get around the software infringement, they will only have to pay the $94mill and be done with it, because all their hardware are fine.
Actually, it is a little less simple than that:

The hardware claims were not tossed aside. They were sent back to the judge to determine next step. The question ends up being whether or not the judge feels Echostar violated under the doctrine of equivalents the patent. That could lead the hardware claims to be retried. Echostar and Dish Network did not get a free pass on the hardware claims.

Echostar and Dish Network will also have to prove their new software does not violate the software claims of the patent. They will not be able to stand up in a court and say, "we've fixed it now," and everything is fine. They have to prove they are working around and no longer violating the Time Warp patent.

And if none of the original judgment is reduced, the damages awarded will be a little closer to $200 million, provided TiVo can get the newer receivers manufactured since the original trial added on to the list of infringing devices.
 

Geronimo

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jacmyoung

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Jun 30, 2007
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... That could lead the hardware claims to be retried. ...

Which would fit E*'s plan perfectly. The tactic of E* on this has always been gragging it out, the more time it buys the more likely they can find ways around it.

Had they not been successful in delaying tactic, they might not have had time to come up with the new software.

As far as proving the new software does not infringe the patent, if E* is not bluffing, then they should already have the code upon request by the court. Now it will be up to Tivo to disapprove it which can take time even if successful.

BTW, $100 mill or $200 mill, does not make too much difference. As the example I used earlier, Blackberry (a much smaller company) paid $400 mill to settle a similar claim after a lengthy litigation, they are still in business and customers don't seem impacted much.
 

dgordo

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Aug 2, 2004
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Which would fit E*'s plan perfectly. The tactic of E* on this has always been gragging it out, the more time it buys the more likely they can find ways around it.

Had they not been successful in delaying tactic, they might not have had time to come up with the new software.

As far as proving the new software does not infringe the patent, if E* is not bluffing, then they should already have the code upon request by the court. Now it will be up to Tivo to disapprove it which can take time even if successful.

BTW, $100 mill or $200 mill, does not make too much difference. As the example I used earlier, Blackberry (a much smaller company) paid $400 mill to settle a similar claim after a lengthy litigation, they are still in business and customers don't seem impacted much.


They can drag it out all they want, the software claim is as good as over. It will not be up to Tivo to prove anything in re. the new software. The burden of proof is on Echostar.
 

TheKrell

A mighty and noble race originating on Altair IV.
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Jan 4, 2007
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I think the Echostar/Sling TR-50 scares the crap out of Tivo. An HD DVR for the OTA crowd with NO FEES, external storage, and the option for video on demand services.
Agree on the desirability of the TR-50. But what makes you think Tivo is frightened, as opposed to getting ready to expand their lawsuit to cover all Echostar DVRs, old and new, OTA, satellite-only, or both together?
 

jacmyoung

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jun 30, 2007
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Sacramento, CA
Folks let's remember the hardware part is over, Tivo can request a retry, but not only it will take a lot more time, the chance of success is much less now the court opinion is given.

On the software part, regardless whose burden of proof, if E* is truthful that their new software does not infringe on the patent, then they should be able to prove it to the court. The standard of proof maybe debateable but I think if E* offers their non-infringing code to the court, it is up to Tivo to prove they are still infringing code.

So the only thing you guys can count on is if E* was bluffing. If so E* only have themselve to blame.

I just found it funny everyone is trying to hope things turn out the way he wants to be not looking at the factual statements made here in the past day.

I say it again, the only thing you have to hold on to is if E* is indeed bluffing, then as I said they only have themselves to blame. Clear enough?
 
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