TiVo wins patent rights

In a ruling by US District Judge David Folsom, EchoStar has been ordered to disable most if not all DVR units being used by its subscribers. The ruling is based on the finding that EchoStar willingly infringed on patents owned by TiVo. DailyTech previously reported that TiVo took EchoStar to court over patent infringements. Judge Folsom is also ordering EchoStar to pay TiVo for damages and for money it should have been paying to TiVo all this time.

In a clear winning for TiVo, EchoStar will be paying TiVo nearly $90 million. About $5.4 million will be in interest payment alone and $10.3 million in supplemental damages. The rest of the payment is for the actual infringement.

EchoStar has been given a 30-day limit in which to disable the DVRs that customers are using. According to the report, EchoStar said that TiVo wasn't actually being damaged by anything EchoStar was doing because the lawsuit was only brought up several years after EchoStar began using DVRs. EchoStar also said that TiVo did not sue it earlier because it was trying to cut a business deal with EchoStar.

Despite claims that its business will suffer because of the injunction, Judge Folsom argued otherwise. "Although the injunction will likely result in some degree of customer loss and will impact EchoStar's ability to compete in the market, EchoStar will not be irreparably harmed," Folsom said.

TiVo is currently waiting on its business agreement with Comcast to kick into action later this year. The DVR pioneer is also claims that its Series3 dual CableCARD DVR is scheduled to debut soon as well.

Update 08/18/2006: Today EchoStar made a statement that the Federal Circuit Cout of Appeals has temporarily blocked the injunction while it considers a long-term stay of that injunction.

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