We suspect that this may turn out to be the beginning of a protracted dispute between the two companies. At stake is the very viability of TiVo’s technology in the Australian marketplace, while FOXTEL’s freedom to continue providing advanced digital home entertainment services is also on the line.
The fact is that TiVo has failed to make a big impact in the Australian market. At the same time, FOXTEL is providing digital cable television services that include ‘intelligent’ features almost identical with those of TiVo’s ‘smart digital video recorders’.
Even without looking at the details of TiVo’s patent applications, it seems inevitable that FOXTEL would infringe at least some of the patent claims should the applications proceed to grant.