Rovi Sues Toshiba Over Patents

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Interactive program guide vendor Rovi filed a federal patent-infringement lawsuit against Toshiba -- and lodged a similar complaint with the U.S. International Trade Commission -- alleging certain Toshiba TVs and DVRs infringe three of its U.S. patents relating to IPGs and parental controls.

Rovi filed the lawsuit Oct. 29 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware. It filed the ITC complaint Oct. 20.

The patents at issue are: U.S. Patent No. 6,020,929 ("Video Mix Program Guide"); 6,305,016 ("Systems and Methods for Displaying Information with a Perceived Partial Transparency Over a Television Program"); and 6,701,523 ("V-Chip Plus+ In-Guide User Interface Apparatus and Method for Programmable Blocking of Television and Other Viewable Programming, Such as for Parental Control of a Television Receiver").

Rovi is seeking a permanent injunction barring Toshiba from using the patents, as well as unspecified damages. In the lawsuit, Rovi claimed that Toshiba is aware that the products infringe patents awarded since 2000.

A Rovi spokeswoman declined to comment. Toshiba representatives did not respond to a request for comment.

Rovi last year changed its name from Macrovision Solutions, after the company completed the acquisition of Gemstar-TV Guide International in 2008. Rovi says it has more than 4,700 issued or pending patents worldwide.

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