BlackBerry Ltd.’s market share might be dwindling, but it took solace in another small victory in a California federal court this month. Judge William H. Orrick III, of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, tossed out an affirmative defense and a counterclaim by Typo Products LLC in a patent dispute with the Canadian mobile device maker, following a preliminary injunction in March. This ruling comes in a long line of setbacks for Typo Products in the patent dispute.
The case concerns alleged patent infringement of a mobile device keyboard.
Typo Products, backed by American Idol and E! Entertainment television personality Ryan Seacrest, had been selling the keyboards for iPhones for $99. The company was forced to stop selling the keyboards in March of this year, following a preliminary injunction. Reuters reports that BlackBerry is claiming, “blatant theft of our patented keyboard technology.”
Typo’s claims hinge, in large part, on the validity of BlackBerry’s U.S. Patent 7,629,964. Typo claimed that the ‘964 patent was obvious in light of the prior art, including old patents for typewriter keyboards, and that BlackBerry had failed to disclose that prior art during patent prosecution. In reviewing the patent prosecution for the ‘964 patent, the court found that BlackBerry disclosed more than 100 pieces of prior art, including many old typewriter keyboard patents, and that Typo had failed to demonstrate the relevancy of the prior art it had produced.
Patent litigation, like the Typo case, can be extremely complex. Likewise, protecting your company’s patents and other intellectual property requires constant vigilance. If you believe your company’s patents are being infringed upon, or you have questions about selling your company’s products in a competitive marketplace, you need guidance from an experienced business lawyer.
James J. (“Jim”) Thomas II is ready to help Georgia businesses defend their business reputations and intellectual property rights with the latest business litigation tools. Jim has more than 35 years of courtroom experience in the Atlanta area, and can handle complex business litigation as well as analysis, evaluation, and resolution of existing and potential litigation. For a free consultation, email Jim, or give him a call at 404-869-5248, or go to http://www.litigationatlanta.com.