By John Presper

On May 24, 2022, the ITC issued a Notice of Investigation in Certain Digital Set-Top Boxes and Systems and Services Including the Same (Inv. No. 337-TA-1315).

By way of background, this investigation is based on a April 22, 2022 complaint filed by Broadband iTV, Inc. of Austin, Texas (“Broadband”) alleging violations of section 337 by Respondents Comcast Corporation of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Comcast Cable Communications, LLC of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; NBCUniversal Media, LLC of Universal City, California; Charter Communications, Inc. of Stamford, Connecticut; Charter Communications Operating, LLC of St. Louis, Missouri; Charter Communications Holding Company, LLC of St. Louis, Missouri; Spectrum Management Holding Company, LLC of St. Louis, Missouri; Altice USA, Inc. of Long Island City, New York; CSC Holdings, LLC of Long Island City, New York; and Cablevision Systems Corp. of Bethpage, New York (collectively, “Respondents”) in the unlawful importation/sale of certain set-top boxes and systems and services including the same by reason of infringement of certain claims of U.S. Patent No. 9,866,909; U.S. Patent No. 10,555,014; U.S. Patent No. 9,936,240; and U.S. Patent No. 11,277,669.

According to the complaint, the asserted Patents generally relate to improvements to video-on-demand (VOD) and electronic program-guide (EPG) technologies, and more specifically provide solutions to improve and streamline how television content and metadata is organized, selected, and ultimately presented to subscribers through a set-top box.  The accused products are used by subscribers, primarily for entertainment purposes, to access television content, such as movies and TV shows, and include (i) imported set-top boxes, including streaming devices, for receiving television services; and (ii) services and systems that incorporate the imported set-top boxes, and components of such systems.  Broadband is requesting that the Commission issue a limited exclusion order and cease-and-desist order against Respondents.  According to the Notice of Investigation, the Office of Unfair Import Investigations will not participate as a party in the investigation.  Lastly, Chief ALJ Clark S. Cheney issued a notice that ALJ Cameron R. Elliot will preside over the investigation.