Peloton has reportedly designed new video streaming technology for their hardware devices (which includes the Bike, Bike+, Tread, Tread+, Row, and Guide) in anticipation of the upcoming U.S. International Trade Commission’s import ban.
In case you missed it, last week the U.S. International Trade Commission enacted an import ban against Peloton and iFit (the makers of NordicTrack) in relation to an ongoing lawsuit by Dish Network related to the video streaming technology & algorithms used by Peloton devices. The ban will take effect in 60 days and will prohibit the sales, marketing, and import of Peloton products that infringe upon Dish Network’s patents.
However, a Peloton spokesperson has said that the Peloton has been able to update their software with new video streaming technology.
Like most other connected devices, Peloton hardware products have the ability to download and install periodic software updates. Peloton’s devices – the Bike, Bike+, Tread, Tread+, Guide, and Row – automatically download updates when new software becomes available via connected wifi. This means that the new streaming software – which presumably no longer utilizes Dish Network’s patented technology and algorithms – can automatically be pushed to all Peloton hardware devices. This would be done in the same way that members occasionally receive other software updates.
In other words – Peloton could perform a mass update of the software on all hardware devices that are connected to the internet so that they no longer infringe upon any Dish Network patents. The patents that Peloton was found to be infringing on were related to streaming video algorithms & software – so those can be updated via a software update. The patents did not involve any hardware pieces of the Peloton equipment.
This mass update can easily pushed automatically to all Peloton devices currently connected to internet. Of course, Peloton has a lot of inventory sitting in warehouses waiting to be sold – which presumably would have no internet connection. The updates to these devices might require a more manual process before they could be sold (i.e. powering them on to connect them to the internet to get an update, or, updating them via a USB device), but this could certainly be done.
Note that we at Pelo Buddy are not lawyers; however, this seems to suggest that Peloton would not be impacted by the import ban, since their products would not longer be utilizing Dish Network’s patented technology.
However, while Peloton’s new software could render an import ban moot, the company may still be subject to a financial penalty for past usage of Dish Network’s technology.
We will continue to share updates regarding the impending import ban against Peloton as they become available. In the meantime, you can read about the import ban and the origins of the decision via our site.
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