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Cisco sues Tivo

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by Welshdog, Jun 1, 2012.

  1. Jun 1, 2012 #1 of 48
    Welshdog

    Welshdog Tivo this, punk!

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  2. Jun 1, 2012 #2 of 48
    lillevig

    lillevig Hot in West Texas

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    Interesting ploy but I'm with you: where does it say that any company has to license it's patents to some other company? Then again, I think I have some Cisco stock so, GO Cisco!
     
  3. Jun 1, 2012 #3 of 48
    aadam101

    aadam101 Tell me a joke

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    I really hope Cisco loses this. What is the incentive to have patents if a court can tell you what to do with them?
     
  4. Jun 1, 2012 #4 of 48
    MichaelK

    MichaelK New Member

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    lately I've been reading a bit that there's some sort of legal concept of 'necessary patents'. And that companies that hold them need to license them fairly.

    The context I've seen mostly seems to be Motorola holding back stuff from MS and others in europe. So not sure if that's an American legal concept or just EU. (think these "essential patents" of late are necessary to build a cell phone and/or to stream video)

    (I think the concept is that if you couldn't possibly make a DVR without a license from TiVo then the concept would apply. TiVo hasn't lost in court yet so I guess one might be able to say that you couldn't do it- but from the comments here it seems it is possible otherwise)
     
  5. Jun 1, 2012 #5 of 48
    MichaelK

    MichaelK New Member

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    googles and read some more- looks like i was wrong above.

    sounds like the gist is Cisco is arguing that tivo keeps "wrongly" suing cisco's customers. The implication is that the customers wrongly settle with TiVo. So Cisco wants a court to rule that their boxes dont infringe on TiVo's patents (either by declaring them void or by saying that Cisco does otherwise) so Cisco can stop Tivo from suing other customers.

    At least that's what the articles seemed to be saying...
     
  6. Jun 1, 2012 #6 of 48
    ThreeSoFar

    ThreeSoFar FourNow...WaitFive

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    Also: Cisco may be considering buying TiVo. They've made some boneheaded acquisitions in the last few years.
     
  7. Jun 2, 2012 #7 of 48
    Worf

    Worf Active Member

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    Sort of.

    Motorola's patents are part of a standard created by the 3GPP. In other words, to implement a cell phone, you must license the patents as they're an integral part of the standard. Because of this, Motorola has agreed they will license those patents to anyone who asks under Fair, Reasonable And Non-Discriminatory (FRAND) terms. If Motorola did not agree to this, the standard would be created so that Motorola's patents will not be required. Since it's in Motorola's interest to have their patents in the spec, they agree to these terms.

    Likewise, all patents involved in standards are under this - as it's impossible to implement the standard without violating the patent. Other standards include Ethernet, Wi-Fi, DOCSIS, DSL, DDR (memory).

    That's what essential patents are - you cannot comply with the standard without those patents, so you must be able to license those patents.

    TiVo's patents however aren't part of a standard. They may be necessary in order to implement a DVR, but since there's no standard, TiVo's not under any obligation to license patents to anyone. It's what led to the TiVo/ReplayTV patent lawsuits a decade ago, that ended by both companies cross-licensing each other's patents (since both companies realize that they need each other's patents).

    Even FRAND patents can have issues over the meaning of the words.

    I think Cisco's problem is that they're not willing to pay what TiVo wants - they probably were paying it and are now looking for a way to eliminate a BOM cost.
     
  8. Jun 2, 2012 #8 of 48
    Drewster

    Drewster Shooting blanks

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    Wouldn't Cisco's patents have come from the Scientific Atlantic acquisition?

    ETA: I guess it depends on the patents in question. Cisco has a LOT of patents.
     
  9. Jun 2, 2012 #9 of 48
    SullyND

    SullyND L:45-21 TCF Club

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    Kind of interesting given the primary manufacturer of hardware for the Virgin TiVo.
     
  10. Mars Rocket

    Mars Rocket Loosely wound

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    Philips?
     
  11. SullyND

    SullyND L:45-21 TCF Club

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    Hint: Whose logo is that in the middle:

    [​IMG]
     
  12. Johncv

    Johncv Active Member

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    I can’t make out the logo, but Philips was brought in by VM because Cisco could not keep up with the demand. Also, I think there another box builder in EU that also is building Tivo boxes.

    I think Cisco suing now because more cable companies are using TiVo. Comcast allowing VOD on the TiVo now put Comcast in a better bargain deal with Cisco. Comcast can now demand to pay less money for each crappy Cisco box and if Cisco tune Comcast down then Comcast will just replace them with Tivo boxes. This would be a big win for TiVo.

    Also, everything points to Verizon losing their law sues against TiVo. Speculation is that unlike AT&T, Verizon is more likely to offer TiVo boxes instead of then writing a big payout to TiVo.

    I think Cisco running scared.
     
  13. SullyND

    SullyND L:45-21 TCF Club

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    Does Comcast use SA/Cisco hardware? I've primarily seen moto. AFAIK the Virgin units are Cisco and Samsung.
     
  14. Johncv

    Johncv Active Member

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    Yes, it could be Samsung, not that it really matter who build the box. It would have to be built to Virgin’s and TiVo’s spec.

    It one cool looking box, wish Virgin could buy out Cox and/or Comcast. :D
     
  15. Johncv

    Johncv Active Member

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    I have to add Google now own Mot DVR division and they don’t want it. Last I read Google is trying find a buyer for the Mot DVR division. If no buyer is found, Google will probably just close down the DVR division.
     
  16. Johncv

    Johncv Active Member

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    I think that also part of the law sues, Cisco want to license TiVo patents, but TiVo will only license the patents if the boxes are built to TiVo’s spec, with TiVo’s software running the box.
     
  17. ajwees41

    ajwees41 Active Member

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    it's more then the dvr it's the whole set top division.
     
  18. aadam101

    aadam101 Tell me a joke

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    Why? I would think this would be a fantastic business for Google. They have been trying to get into living rooms for a very long time and haven't done very well. Motorola is already in the living rooms of millions of households. Do they think they have little chance of designing the box they want because of the cable companies?
     
  19. MichaelK

    MichaelK New Member

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    depends on the headend.

    Not sure if they "prefer" moto or not but the gist i get is they cobbled together tons of systems and it's cost prohibitive to switch from one vendor to another. So if it was a SA system it stays SA (now cisco) and if it's moto it stays moto (now google i guess?)
     
  20. MichaelK

    MichaelK New Member

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    there's all sorts of speculation on the net- general gist is they really only want the patents and might keep them but will sell off the hardware. But Also there's newer guesses that they might wind up keeping it.

    I can't see them shutting it down- someone will pay something for the business even if it's just for the hardware. Pace comes to mind- they seem to pick up whatever scraps that moto and SA/cisco allow them to eat.
     

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