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Google signs patent deal with Rovi for Google Fiber TV interfaces

Google has signed a patent agreement with digital entertainment technology company Rovi for technology that will be used for its upcoming Google Fiber service.

The multi-year agreement provides Google with a license for Rovi's interactive program guide used in set-top boxes, mobile devices, and on the Web.

"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," Samir Armaly, executive vice president of Worldwide Intellectual Property & Licensing at Rovi, said in a statement. "We are pleased that the relevance of our intellectual property in this space continues to be recognized by leading companies such as Google."

Santa Clara-based Rovi said its portfolio includes about 5,100 issued or pending patents.

Last week, Google formally announced plans for Google Fiber, which will launch with 1 gigabit Internet plus TV service in Kansas City, Missouri and Kansas, starting next year.

With its TV service, Google is promising hundreds of channels and on-demand shows, as well as 2TB of DVR storage and eight tuners, and a new Nexus 7 tablet to serve as a remote control - all for $120 (£77) per month.

There's also the option for standalone 1 gigabit Internet for $70 (£45) per month or free, 5 Mbps Internet with a $300 (£190) installation fee.

Interest is growing, with hundreds of people in the Kansas City paying $10 (£6) to pre-register for the service.

No word yet on when, or whether, we can expect to see a UK rollout of Google Fiber, but our fingers are certainly crossed.