Forgent Networks has filed a lawsuit against 15 cable and satellite providers, accusing them of violating a patent in their digital video recorders.
The case focuses on patent 6,285,746 that describes a video recording device that plays back video while it is being recorded. The feature is found in most of today's digital video recorders including models sold by DirectTV, Cox and Echostar.
Forgent is accustomed to going through the courts to ensure royalty payments for its patent portfolio. It has been enforcing a graphics compression patent for years that is used in the popular Jpeg image format.
Forgent has so far received about $100m in fees from 35 different companies for the image patent. A Forgent spokesman told vnunet.com that no licence deals are in place for the video playback patent.
The case was filed in the District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, Marshall Division.
None of the charged companies contacted by vnunet.com was able to comment on the case. A spokesman for DirectTV said that it had not yet had a chance to study the lawsuit.
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