Ryan Seacrest might have to add dealing with a lawsuit to his long to-do list now that a cell phone accessory company he helped co-found is being sued by BlackBerry.
The product is called Typo, and it's a keyboard attached to a phone case that fits on the iPhone 5 and 5s. It gives users an alternative to the touch screen keyboard on current iPhone models. (Via typokeyboards.com)
But BlackBerry says Typo is a knockoff of the keyboard found on many of its own phones. Now the company has filed a lawsuit for copyright infringement. (Via WOOD)
BlackBerry announced the lawsuit in a news release Friday. In it, the company's Chief Legal Officer said: "This is a blatant infringement against BlackBerry’s iconic keyboard." (Via BlackBerry)
The lawsuit means trouble for Typo, which opened for business just last month. So far, its keyboard has only been up for pre-order online and is expected to be released later this month. (Via CNN)
Seacrest himself reportedly invested roughly $1 million in the company that created the keyboard now under scrutiny from BlackBerry. (Via Los Angeles Times)
BlackBerry says it wants to see Typo take its newly revealed product off the market. A writer for ZDNet said the suit is an attempt for the struggling company to keep some of its originality. (Via WCVB)
"BlackBerry wants to hold on to its killer designs for itself — even if nobody else seems to want the keyboard-enabled smartphone anymore."
Bloomberg reports business is slow for BlackBerry. In 2013, its share in the smartphone market fell to less than two percent — down from almost five percent a year earlier.
Although BlackBerry would like Typo's keyboard cases off the market, as of Saturday, they are still available for pre-order online with a price tag of $99.