A US district court in Texas ordered Dish Network Corporation, a leading provider of satellite television services in US, and its sister concern EchoStar Corporation, a satellite services and equipment supplier, to pay in home entertainment pioneer TiVo Inc approximately $200 million in a lingering patent dispute.
The amount will include $110 million in compensation and about $90 million in sanctions and court costs.
The row started in 2004, when TiVo filed suit against EchoStar (former parent company of Dish Network), alleging violation of patent rights on its DVR. However, EchoStar maintained that it created its DVR in good faith, with no intention of copying the technology of TiVo.
EchoStar and Dish Network became two separate companies in 2008, with EchoStar now serving as a key technology partner to Dish Network, providing the company with set-top boxes and other TV technology that helps it to offer the ultimate TV experience to its customers.
California-based TiVo Inc. is a pioneer in developing digital video recorder (DVR) – a device that records video in a digital format to a disk drive or other memory medium allowing the user to play, pause and rewind and much more – which revolutionised the way consumers watch and access home entertainment including television, movies, video, music etc. TiVo was introduced in the US, and is now available in Canada, Mexico, Australia, Taiwan and UK.
In 2006, a Texas court ordered EchoStar to pay $74 million in damages to TiVo on the finding that the company infringed upon the patents of TiVo for DVRs.