Freeview To Cut EPG Deal After IceTV Win

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UPDATED: The CEO of Freeview Robin Parkes has said that she is not prepared to have a 3 year legal fight over an electronic program guide (EPG) similar to what IceTV has gone through and that she is now in discussions with US company Macrovision in an effort to cut a patent deal that will Australians forced to pay for a Freeview EPG service.

The end result she says will be a royalty fee of around $5.00 which every TV and set to box manufacturer will to pay for each Freeview certified device they import. Currently The CEO of Freeview Robin Parkes has said that she is not prepared to have a 3 year legal fight over an electronic program guide (EPG) similar to what IceTV has gone through and that she is now in discussions with US company Macrovision in an effort to cut a patent deal that will Australians forced to pay for a Freeview EPG service.are .

The problem for Freeview is that in launching their new service in Australia in May 2009 the service is dependent on a traditional information grid pattern EPG of which the copyright is owned by Macrovision a Company . who aquired the patent when they purchased Gemstar a Company 41% owned by Rupert Murdoch.

 “I do not want Freeview to get into a legal fight that could go on for years. I have seen the IceTV ruling and if we fight the issue with Macrovision we will end up in a similar 3 year fight. While there are cases overseas that have gone against Macrovision  there are no similar rulings in Australia other than the IceTV case which is more about content than a patented grid” said Parkes.

 

“We are currently talking to Macrovision and we are confident that we will be able to reach an agreement over the royalty that manufacturers will have to pay. We anticipate that the royalty fee could be around $5.00 per device”.

BACKGROUND: Gemstar no longer exists as a company. When Macrovision Corporation took over Gemstar last year, a new company was formed called Macrovision Solutions Corporation, which is now the owner of the EPG patents. All Gemstar shareholders, including Rupert Murdoch, received some cash and a number of of shares in the new company for each of their Gemstar shares.

Shortly after the takeover was completed, Ruport Murdoch sold all the Macrovision Solutions Corporation shares he acquired through the takeover, so he currently has no interest in Macrovision Solutions Corporation.

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