The suit centered around TiVo’s patent on “Multimedia Time Warping System,” the technology that allows users to rewind, pause and fast forward live TV programs. TiVo claimed that Echostar set-top-boxes that featured DVR capabilities used its patented technology to enable DVR features. Echostar’s laywers claimed that TiVo was using the company as a scapegoat for its own failing sales, but the jury did not go along with it.
Parental Controls on Mobile Phones
As more and more companies, including a new service announced at CTIA this week called Disney Mobile, are developing wireless products aimed specifically at children and young teenagers, some industry watchdogs are growling at the potential for danger. Lynn Hayes, communications specialist and author of themobilemom.com, is urging parents to keep a closer watch on who’s calling their kids and which Internet sites children are accessing from their phone. “When a teenager gets their driver’s lisensce, you don’t just hand them the car keys and say, ‘Have at it!’” she notes. “You want to ease them into new technologies.” She says, for example, it’s one thing for a teenager to check out the latest scores on Mobile ESPN, it’s quite another for them to place bets on a game at a gambling site through a smartphone. Hayes was at CTIA’s “mobile home” display demonstrating a new Internet-based software product called “Mobile Guardian” which operates like a sort of v-chip for cellphones, allowing parents to restrict which URL’s a child’s phone can access.