Rovi dishes out patents to Google in licensing pact

Digital entertainment company Rovi will license out patents to Google, as the search giant pushes ahead with a bid to boost its Google TV service.

Rovi said this morning it has signed a deal to see its patents licensed out to Google, currently making a push for its digital television platform.

The multi-year licensing agreement includes a patent portfolio that covers Rovi's interactive program guide for set top boxes, online media and mobile platforms.

Rovi's software is used in set-top boxes and embedded televisions to play a variety of digital media formats. Since Google bought Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion last year, the smartphone making unit that also builds television set-top boxes, the search giant has been prepping its Google TV software for such devices.

Rovi holds more than 5,200 patents -- including those pending -- worldwide. 

"Our agreement with Google continues the growth and relevance of our patent licensing program for not only traditional platforms, but also new media experiences across multiple screens," said Rovi's executive vice-president of IP and licensing, Samir Armaly.

The patent portfolio will also be used for Google Fiber service, the Rovi press release said. The high-speed Internet and TV service pegs in at roughly 100 times faster than most U.S. homes receive on standard broadband. 

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