Roku Hit By International Trade Commission Patent Investigation After Universal Electronics Filing

Streaming company Roku is the subject of a complaint with the International Trade Commission. Universal Electronics $UEIC filed a complaint back on April 18 which led to the launching a probe into a claim of patent infringement. $ROKU is down over 2% on the news.

Streaming company Roku is the subject of a complaint with the International Trade Commission. Universal Electronics $UEIC filed a complaint back on April 18 which led to the launching a probe into a claim of patent infringement. $ROKU is down over 2% on the news. Roku

ITC to probe patent claim against Roku Universal Electronics wants to block imports of streaming players, set-top boxes and TVs made by Funai, TCL and Hisense that incorporate Roku’s operating system.

Further to this they want the Roku Ultra and Streaming Stick Plus blocked. The suit claims infringement of up to six patents on ways to simplify a remote control setup. This is intellectual property it claims is key to its QuickSet feature, licensed by providers including Comcast, AT&T, Dish Network, Sony, Samsung, and Microsoft.

This investigation is in response to UEI’s complaint filed with the ITC on April 16, 2020 alleging that the Infringing Parties have engaged in unfair trade practices by the importation, sale for importation, and/or sale after importation into the United States of the Infringing Parties’ Products that infringe one or more claims of UEI’s U.S. Patent Nos. 9,911,325 (the “’325 Patent”), 7,589,642 (the “’642 Patent”), 7,969,514 (the “’514 Patent”), 10,600,317 (the “’317 Patent”), 10,593,196 (the “’196 Patent”), and 9,716,853 (the “’853 Patent”) (collectively, the “UEI Patents”).

“For over 30 years, UEI has invested in innovation to invent unique technology for our customers, including our Emmy® award-winning Advanced Voice Control for Smart Entertainment and IoT,” said Paul Arling, UEI’s chairman and CEO. “To protect our assets, we have amassed over 500 patents that we use in our solutions and license to software and technology manufacturers. When other companies use our technology without permission, we first endeavor to form mutually beneficial business arrangements and it is only when such arrangements cannot be achieved that we take action to vigorously protect our valuable IP.” Mr. Arling added, “We believe that the ITC plays a valuable role in protecting U.S. industries like UEI’s and in preventing unfair trade practices. We look forward to the ITC protecting our substantial and significant efforts to innovate.”

UEI has also filed concurrent suits in the United States District Court for the Central District of California against these same Infringing Parties. Those complaints include allegations of patent infringement regarding the UEI Patents and UEI seeks both damages and injunctive relief.

Certain of the UEI Patents have been successfully litigated in prior UEI legal actions.

All of the UEI Patents are part of a portfolio of technology that is broadly licensed to OEMs, software development companies, private label customers, and subscription broadcast providers in the consumer electronics, subscription broadcast, home entertainment, automation, security, hospitality and climate control markets. Licensees of QuickSet include service providers such as Comcast, AT&T and Dish Network Corporation; smart TV manufacturers such as Sony Corporation and Samsung; and leading game console manufacturers such as Microsoft Corporation on its Xbox One game system.

A decision isn’t expected for some time as ITC probes usually take well over twelve month to complete.

Reaction: Roku Inc NASDAQ: $ROKU

$115.84 +2.66 (-2.25%)

Reaction > Universal Electronics Inc NASDAQ: UEIC

$41.20  +0.10 (+0.24%)


About Roku (From IPO prospectus)

  • Founded 15 years ago
  • Sells a line of set-top boxes that enable its streaming TV services.
  • Has 15.1 million monthly active users as of June 30, up 43% from the year-ago period.
  • Claims it’s equivalent to being the fourth-largest distributor of multichannel video programming, by subscribers.
  • Roku home screen lets  users search and access more than 500,000 movies and TV episodes
  • Access live sports, music, news and more
  • For H12017 ended June 30 Roku reported revenue of $199.7 million, up 23% from the year-ago period, with a loss of $21.2 million, vs. a loss of $32.6 million a year ago.
  • Roku revenue includes Roku TV streaming devices, advertising and subscription revenue

ROKU Competitors

  • Apple $AAPL Apple TV device
  • Amazon $AMZN Fire TV Stick
  • Alphabet Google unit $GOOGL Google Chromecast device. 


About Universal Electronics

Universal Electronics Inc. (NASDAQ: UEIC) is the worldwide leader in universal control and sensing technologies for the smart home. Its broad portfolio of patents includes QuickSet® software that utilizes the world’s most complete knowledge graph to detect and interact with thousands of entertainment and smart home devices. The company designs, develops, and manufactures innovative products that are used by the world’s leading brands in the audio, video, subscription broadcasting, connected home, home energy management, and mobile device markets. UEI’s many first-to-market innovations have helped transform the home entertainment control, home security, and home energy management and sensing industries.(From Website)

Source. Universal Eletronics

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