Spotify has received a patent infringement lawsuit, less than two weeks after having debuted in the United States. The San Diego-based company PacketVideo has filed the lawsuit over a patent that dates back to 1995. Their lawsuit targets Spotify both in the United States and in Europe, as the patents relate to how a music streaming service could work. As The Telegraph reports, Spotify has been strongly contesting the lawsuits, which were filed in California and the Netherlands. PacketVideo claims it has already attempted to "amicably resolve its concerns".
PacketVideo acquired the patents in 2007, after having purchased the Swiss company SDC. The patents describe technical elements used by many different music streaming services, such as the following:
"the capability to interact via the communications network in order to order and transmit selectively chosen music information”.
This patent seems to have extremely broad meanings. Rulings in both the United States and Europe will be worth paying attention to. If PacketVideo wins it could be massively damaging for Spotify, as well as other music streaming services. The claim comes less than two weeks after Spotify released in the United States. The service has been praised in both the United States and Europe, but depending on how things go with the lawsuit, its future might not be too easily determined. Spotify has made an official statement on the subject, which can be read below:
"PacketVideo is claiming that by distributing music over the internet, Spotify (and by inference any other similar digital music service) has infringed one of the patents that has previously been acquired by PacketVideo."
When rejecting the claims made by PacketVideo, Spotify attributed its success to the following:
“highly innovative, proprietary hybrid technology that incorporates peer-to-peer technology”.