EchoStar (now known as DISH Network Corporation) was dealt yet another blow in its ongoing patent battle with Tivo as the U.S. Appeals Court ruled against them. The dispute involves EchoStar’s alleged infringement of Tivo’s TimeWarp patent, which allows users to record one program while watching another. Tivo applied for the patent in 1998, and it was granted in 2001.
In 2004 Tivo successfully sued EchoStar for its Dish Network DVR, which provided very similar functionality to Tivo’s product. EchoStar was ordered to pay Tivo $73.9M in damages. The company has subsequently appealed the ruling a number of times, but has not been successful in getting it overturned.
The Dish Network has advised customers that the latest rulings will have no effect on their DVR service, stating that they have deployed “next-generation DVR software” that will not infringe on Tivo’s patent. The company has also declared that it intends to appeal the latest ruling all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. Dish has a lot more lawyer money than TiVo, and it is going to drag this thing out as long as it can.
Thomas Hawk’s Digital Connection was the first site to report the news.