Netflix will continue to be a part of pay-TV platforms running TiVo.
The two companies have signed new licensing agreements both in its operator-led platforms and retail boxes. The integrated offering includes unified search across the content catalogue and a Netflix button on remote controls.
“The partnership between Netflix and TiVo dates back to our early days of streaming video,” said Bill Holmes, Netflix global head of business development. “Building on this history, the agreements provide consumers freedom to watch their favourite TV shows and movies whenever and wherever, with an integrated experience across more devices.”
A separate intellectual property agreement gives Netflix a license to the TiVo patent portfolios and a license to the Intellectual Ventures patent portfolio for over-the-top offerings.
“Our agreements with Netflix represent a major milestone for TiVo as we expand our offerings for the fast-growing OTT space, and further demonstrates our commitment to delivering innovative technologies to new and emerging markets,” said Tom Carson, CEO, TiVo.
The agreement represents one of the first licenses granted under the exclusive partnership with Intellectual Ventures announced earlier this year. Holding company Intellectual Ventures signed an earlier deal to pool its patents with TiVo/Rovi.
But the two haven’t always been friends. As Rovi, TiVo was involved in a long-running IP action with the streaming service.
Just two weeks ago, the patent issue between Netflix and Tivo/Rovi has reached a turning point, with the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit upholding a major lower-court victory by Netflix.
The Court ruled that two patents on interactive programme guides and on-demand media that Rovi accused Netflix of infringing are invalid for claiming only abstract ideas under the Alice standard, upholding a lower court just days after arguments in the appeal.
The litigation between the two companies began in 2011, when Netflix sued to invalidate a batch of patents on Rovi’s digital entertainment guides, for which Rovi had demanded Netflix pay licensing fees.