EchoStar wins patent lawsuit


A federal jury in Texas has ruled invalid a patent held by Forgent Networks, which had sued EchoStar for over 200 million bucks for patent infringement. Forgent had sued a number of satellite and cable companies for patent infringement and most had settled out of court, including DirecTV that recently agreed to pay Forgent eight million.

"While others had settled, we always believed Forgent's patent was invalid, and we appreciate the efforts of Judge [Leonard] Davis and of the jury vindicating our position," said EchoStar Exec. VP and General Counsel David Moskowitz.

Forgent claimed a patent on technology that is crucial for digital video recorders (DVRs) to be able to play back video while simultaneously recording. Cable MSOs, equipment makers and satellite TV companies that it had sued for patent infringement are believed to have agreed to pay tens of millions to settle out of court.

The jury in Texas, however, agreed with EchoStar that the patent claim was nonsense and tossed it.