BlackBerry goes after Ryan Seacrest's Typo iPhone case... again

The Typo2 can't escape BlackBerry's wrath

Update February 17, 2015: Second time wasn't the charm for Ryan Seacrest's Typo case for iPhones. BlackBerry has called out the latest generation of the QWERTY case, Typo2, for again allegedly ripping off its designs.

"Just as they did with the Typo Keyboard, Defendants have again copied numerous proprietary BlackBerry designs and patents in the Typo2 Keyboard," said BlackBerry in its complaint, picked up by The Hollywood Reporter.

Though it looks less BlackBerry-ish than the first Typo, the Waterloo firm says Typo2 "still blatantly copies BlackBerry's iconic keyboard trade dress designs ... [and] infringes numerous BlackBerry utility patents."

BlackBerry wants an injunction on sales of the iPhone case, and hopes its latest lawsuit puts the kebosh on the "Defendants' pattern and practice of unlawful conduct."

Original story from 2014 below...

BlackBerry has won a court order banning the sale of an iPhone keyboard case that mimicked its patented qwerty design.

The $99 (£60, AU$109) Typo keyboard case added a couple of extra inches to an iPhone, but provided a physical keyboard experience that's a little too close to the one BlackBerry pioneered, according to a judge.

U.S. District Judge William Orrick said similarities between the case and BlackBerry's IP were "unmistakeable" and that Typo was deliberately targeting smartphone users who prefer qwerty action.

"BlackBerry has convincingly shown that BlackBerry's keyboard designs are a key driver of demand and goodwill for BlackBerry phones," the judge wrote in ordering a temporary sales ban.

Bold statement

Typo, which is made by American Idol host Ryan Seacrest's company Typo Products LLC, had failed to make a convincing case that its designs were not infringing on BlackBerry patents, the judge said.

The company plans to appeal the order and told Businessweek it would "continue to make and sell innovative products that busy people can't live without."

The court victory will come as a small ray of sunshine by the Canadian smartphone company, following its grim first quarter earnings report, released on Friday.

The beleaguered firm also announced plans to bring back the classic BlackBerry Bold, which bares that "unmistakably" similar physical qwerty keyboard.

Via The Verge



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As the US News Editor, Michelle (Twitter, Google+) keeps her eye on all things tech with particular interest on phones, tablets and finding out who the people are behind the devices. Any phone that can survive a regular (accidental) drop has her vote for best handset. Michelle previously worked covering local news in the Bay Area and has been with TechRadar since July 2012.