The legal disputes between BlackBerry Ltd. and Typo Products LLC have come to an end in a settlement, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal. The lawsuit, in which BlackBerry alleged that Typo infringed on its iconic keyboard, has been settled with an agreement that Typo will permanently stop selling keyboards for devices with a screen size of less than 7.9 inches.
Typo was cofounded by television personality Ryan Seacrest in 2014, and launched the original version of the keyboard case the same year. BlackBerry quickly pressed legal action against Typo for patent infringement, winning an injunction against its sale and then collecting $860,000 in damages. Typo released a modified version of the keyboard, claiming the new case didn’t infringe BlackBerry’s patents. BlackBerry disagreed, taking Typo back to court over the new version of the keyboard case.
BlackBerry’s share of the global smartphone market has dropped like a rock in recent years, and the Canadian company is hoping its new Leap and other upcoming devices aimed at professionals make the name relevant again, generating sufficient revenue to tide it over until sales of new mobile management and security software gain traction with enterprise customers.
The BlackBerry smartphone is one of the few phones to still sport a physical keyboard, but the new Leap lacks one and the settlement seems to suggest that the company has no plans to adapt its keyboard to devices with screen sizes of 7.9 inches or more. As a result, Typo is still free to market its keyboard case for the iPad Air and iPad mini.