Comcast Prevails in TV Guide Patent Challenge

Written February 5, 2020

The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit on January 13, 2020, upheld Comcast Corp.‘s successful challenge to a patent covering an interactive television guide, finding it invalid based on prior art. Rovi Guides Inc. v. Comcast Cable Commc’ns LLC, Fed. Cir., No. 19-1309, 1/13/20.

The ’871 patent, owned by Rovi, concerns electronic program guides that provide television (“TV”) program schedule information. Specifically, the patent covers a system with multiple interactive TV program guides that allows separate users to configure different guides to their own preferences.

On March 10, 2017, Comcast Cable Communications, LLC (“Comcast”) petitioned for inter partes review of the ’871 patent. The board held the patent invalid, saying it would have been obvious to combine a prior art patent and international patent application to invent a system with “two instances of an interactive program guide” available for “different users on different output [TV] devices.” The Federal Circuit upheld the PTAB’s decision.

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