Rovi has said it plans to appeal a US court ruling issued this week in favour of Netflix, in a patent dispute that dates back to 2011.
Judge Phyllis Hamilton ruled that the five Rovi patents at the centre of the case did not relate to “patentable subject matter” and were thus invalid – based on a precedent set in a separate case heard at the Supreme Court in 2014.
“We are disappointed in, and strongly disagree with, the court’s decision finding the five patents invalid and plan to appeal that decision,” said Rovi’s executive vice president of intellectual property and licensing Samir Armaly.
“Other leading OTT providers, including Apple, Google and Hulu, have previously taken a licence under the Rovi patent portfolio, and we remain confident that Netflix requires a similar licence. While our litigation continues against Netflix, we intend to continue to grow our leading entertainment discovery patent licensing program, including with upcoming renewals in the US pay TV market. Although litigation is always an inherent part of any licensing program, Rovi’s licensing program has been built over the past decade without having to rely on courtroom victories for success. We expect that to continue in the future with the vast majority of our agreements resulting from normal commercial negotiations.”
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