BlackBerry wins injunction against Typo, sales of BlackBerry-style keyboard for iPhone barred

By Derek Kessler on 28 Mar 2014 10:48 pm EDT

It's a bitter setback for Typo and a victory for BlackBerry, but it's not all that surprising that BlackBerry was able to win an injunction on sales of the Typo keyboard for iPhone. Considering how much Typo looks like a BlackBerry keyboard and how much BlackBerry has vowed to fight back against their perceived infringement, a sales ban was all but a foregone conclusion at this point. Sorry, Ryan Seacrest, you're out this round. As reported by Bloomberg:

U.S. District Judge William Orrick in San Francisco said in a ruling today that BlackBerry is likely to prevail on its infringement claims and that Typo hasn’t made a strong challenge to the validity of the smartphone maker’s patents. Orrick also dismissed Typo’s concern that a temporary sales ban may put the company out of business.

The injunction is temporary, putting sales of Typo keyboards on hold while the trial proceeds. Typically, this sort of sales bar isn't a good sign for the defendant's impending case. Orrick previously ruled against Typo earlier this week week, dismissing two of their three counter-claims against BlackBerry as invalid. BlackBerry has argued that continued sales of Typo will cause the smartphone maker "irreparable harm" (though one could argue that BlackBerry's done a fine job of that so far by themselves).

Judge for yourself, in this classic video from CES 2014, where Kevin takes a look at Typo and asks strangers what they think of it. Just don't watch Typo's whitewashed version.

Source: Bloomberg

Derek Kessler Derek Kessler "Managing Editor of Mobile Nations" 89 (articles) 5 (forum posts)

Reader comments

BlackBerry wins injunction against Typo, sales of BlackBerry-style keyboard for iPhone barred



I'm pretty sure it will survive an appeal. At least during that process it will still be shut down.

Typo is still allowing orders on its web site as of now.

Sweet victory, he'll yeah BlackBerry. You want a messaging and communication device? Don't be a theif. Get a BlackBerry Secrest.

Posted by Antoniius via my sexy white Q10.

I doubt the sales hold will be forever, they'll work out a deal where blackberry gets paid for every typo sold and good cause they need the money and it's actually a great idea and design

Posted via the Android CrackBerry App!

This matter will serve BB well in other ways.

As a warning, other companies that try to use any BB's many legal intellectual properties will face litigation.
That is just how the legal system works in the US.
All big companies have lawyers in the practice of protecting those properties.

Why should they buy them rather than make their own? There's nothing proprietary about the Typo keyboard that is of benefit to BlackBerry.

Maybe they have some patents, but since BlackBerry is going cross platform, they could start making BlackBerry physical keyboards for everyone!

Posted via CB10


this could be a new revenue stream.. BlackBerry kb's for all platforms!

smartphones themselves may have become commodities but the industry as a whole is still discovering it's niches, so best to explore any possibilities while they're still in their infancy...


Posted with a Verizon Z30 running and CB10. [URL="bbmc:C0004F9BB"] My channel with zero subscribers [/URL]


Posted via CB10 with my T-Mobile USA (Only T-Mo rep still pushing)  ‎BlackBerry Q10...SON! (Soon to be the almighty Z30!)

BlackBerry should move at buying TYPO for cheap once the rule comes out and BlackBerry wins.

Why buy em? Just start making the same thing. But make so they can also be used through blue tooth. I think that would come in handy.

Posted via CB10

They should offer their own accessory, but add a BBM convenience key that lets users easily open BBM with a single click.

Posted via CB10

Buy? LOL You mean bury them where they belong. Pretty sure they could build their own addon keyboards but wtf is the point? In all honesty it pains me to see they are abandoning touch devices indefinitely after the Z3 for lame ass qwerty phones.

Posted via CB10

He wore out 3in one month. Obviously they have work to do on their $100 product. Not sure why Kevin would want to sell such a POS in the Mobile Nations store, but what ev..

This post Powered by BlackBerry

! Are you insane? The BlackBerry keyboard will live through a nuclear attack, trust me I have abused them with anything and everything and they still work! Can't say the same for the BlackBerry trackball, or trackpad.

And yeah u don't have a BlackBerry if you did the above you would know better

I have seen BlackBerry workings with all the plastics gone no battery covers and the lcd half gone, but the kb works!

Posted Via CB10 on my Zed 10

What are you doing with it? Mine is nearly 11 months old, worn out three screen protectors, keyboard still perfect.

Honestly we can't crucify Kevin for making unbiased reviews of non blackberry products. I don't watch reviews to tell me things I already know. It's good to see both pros and cons, and if I remember Crackberry is affiliated with MOBILE NATIONS. We'd be up in arms if one of the other sites reviewed a blackberry product and said nothing but horrible things about it. Turns out Typo was a crappy product anyway. Who wants something that an experienced keyboard user (Kevin) can destroy 3 in one month? I applaud Kevin and the Crackberry team and their hard work!

Posted via CB10

Being part of a general mobile tech site is fine, unless the editorial and moderation policies being undertaken undermines the mission of the site that preceded ALL the "sister sites".

And that has already happened, so I disagree.

Geeee, I didn't know his one review had such a critical impact and undermines the entire Crackberry "mission"! :O
I mean, this Kevin character is the head of this beloved site we frequent on to complain and express our dissatisfaction on how he run things! Shenanigans! What ever shall we do?? :p

Posted via CB10

I'm not scrutinizing Kevin at all. Was really making a joke, yeah he went through several of these things and that shows how well quality control is going for Typo, (god what a stupid name).

Posted with my CB-Q10 using the power of " Q "

I thought the name was well thought out. It is supposed to fix the constant typos the glass tappers have to deal with.

You want a poor product name? PLAYBOOK


The people that already purchased them will be wondering about the warranty. Sorry! LMAO

Posted via Z30STA100-3/ my Channel: C0009668D

True, and how does all this, extremely expensive, litigation, chest pounding, slapping lawsuits and threading bloggers, help sell more Blackberries?

Maybe Chen feels big and bad, but this crap only hurts the bottom line.

I bet, this lawsuit alone, cost a couple million in fees.

The cost of the litigation will be recovered when BlackBerry wins.

This is a huge win for BlackBerry. And it's not like apple going after Samsung for "rounded edges". This is theft man! How do you feel if some one kidnapped your family member or children? Would you worry about the cost or justice?

Posted Via CB10 on my Zed 10

It´s exactly the same, since Apple didm´t sue Samsung for only rounded corners. The way original Galaxy phones, looks and acted like an iPhone was probably more astonishing than how much this keyboard looks like a BB keyboard.

The required payment by Typo to BlackBerry to cover the litigation fees after all this is over will likely eat into their profit margins. I wouldn't be surprised that when the trial is over and BlackBerry wins, the damages Typo will be required to pay will effectively eliminate any profits from the sale of the accessory. If they are allowed to profit from an accessory that shouldn't have been allowed to be sold in the first place, it would undermine the decision to bar it from being sold.


Posted from my brain to your screen via CBQ10

I sold out of my entire inventory of used cars (one) earlier than I expected. Ergo I must be the next phenom in the used car sales world. I will wait for you to cut me a five million dollar check for my own dealership. And I didn't even have a CB Kevin hyping me or a court case publicity.

Lol at jumping to conclusions like an idiot. What part of my post suggested that I was butthurt about Kevin hyping Typo?

What a nonsense comment.

The comment about selling out earlier than expected holds merit. It means it sold more than there forecasted sales or ability to produce products.

If you knew anything about business then you would know that there would have been a business plan with overhead and margin and etc.forecasted. They exceeded their own forecasts. That is a good thing for a start up product.

Considering the direction smart phones are going and the direction BlackBerry looked like they were headed they (Typo) stood to inherit whatever % of the iphone market that wanted a physical keyboard.

They sold supposedly 5000 devices in a few months while litigation was going on. That makes it all something substantial.

Who cares about your stupid car dealership. Get a real job!

Posted via CB10

I'm sorry, but if their forecast and business plan was to spend $1,000,000 to sell $400,000 worth of iPhone keyboards then this project was doomed from day 1

Blackberry sold out of the initial supply of Z10s earlier than expected (and then went overboard making more) .... So what? It was still mostly a fail

Posted via the Android CrackBerry App!

Finally lol what did typo really come on its a straight rip of the q10 keyboard big time.....typo we ain't saying you can't make a keyboard attachment but use your own design and do not rip of blackberry.....such liars about 2 years of development and "innovative" keyboard design such bull $#+? ....

Posted via CB10

Typo went about it all wrong. They should have partnered with Research in Motion from the start. Would have avoided the mess they're in.

Now buy the company, bump up the quality and brand it blackberry. Also let Seacrest in on it for promotional purposes.

Posted via CB10

Therein lies the rub.

They want the keyboard, but they don't want the "Blackberry" association, because BB is so unhip to them. So I don't think branding it "Blackberry" would fly.

Poor babies. I bleed for them daily.

Simply put a label on the back of the Typo keyboard saying "Licensed from BlackBerry Limited. Patent 1234567890987654321." Or similar wording standard in such cases. On the front of the keyboard the brand name "Typo" can appear if desired.

Posted via CB10

How about calling it the the BBM keyword and once it clips on it somehow automatically installs bbm or gives you the option

Posted via CB10

They don't think BlackBerry is really unhip, its the lack of apps that makes them what the keyboard experience without the keyboard Blackberry.

Posted via CB10

If Typo had shown just a little bit of humility or contrition, I'd feel bad for them. But they went out of their way to issue PR statements ridiculing BB's claims, and tried to make a show trial out of a fairly straightforward patent case with their press release that they "told" the judge BB's patents were "invalid." Based solely on their attitude, I couldn't care less if they go out of business.

They really should have just offered to pay licensing fees or something, I think they were to caught up in the media bashing of BlackBerry (as in I agree fully)

Agreed 1000%.

It is the rare occasion when arrogant bluster and hype loses out to sincerity and reason, these days.

I hope BBRY prevails through the rest of the trial and presumed appeals.

That's just what Typo's lawyers told them to say. Step 1: claim non-infringement (pretty hard in this case). Step 2: try to find a way to invalidate the patent.

Posted via CB10 on Z10

The point is not that they argued the case - that is precisely what they had to do. It is the arrogance of their press releases. You allege things in court (or aver, in Federal court), not "tell the judge," as if he's some errant child that you have to correct. Also, sending out press releases with every routine filing in court, as though it were a victory, is pretty darned obnoxious, and most attorneys would advise against it given the lack of certainty involved in any court battle. It's a sure way to look foolish if you wind up losing the argument.

As soon as BlackBerry launched legal action Typo knew the end was near. What do they have to lose by acting that way?

No, but apparently people who are not you expect them to not make ridiculous arguments likes "it's ok if we infringe because BlackBerrys don't sell" especially when Typo's own sales are 4-5000.

Because if they sold out, with all those people from Dubai and maybe the UK buying it up, it has to be great, right? Your standard seems to be "it's okay if I have a very small production run of 10 units, as long as I sell all 10, it's a success!"

And yet blackberry claims that those 5000 units are causing it irreparable damage? Really? So if there was no typo, those 5000 iphone users would have gone and bought a Q10?

Yes, really. Read Kevin's reviews and see how shitty the quality turned out to be. It's not just about getting 5000 buyers, although that would be nice, but collateral damage from using a shitty "BlackBerry-like" clip-on keyboard coming back to hit BlackBerry.

The likelihood of confusion of an inferior product with blackberry products is the greater issue. All typo has to do is design a keyboard that doesn't look and feel exactly like a BB keyboard. The fact is, they probably deliberately chose to copy BB because it is the best designed keyboard out there, which gives the lie to their claims that there is nothing unique about BB's product. Rather than try to diminish BB's claims, they should have sought a licensing arrangement from the beginning. If BB had agreed to a license, it would have also most likely insisted on quality control issues as well and made for a better product.

I hope it's wrapped up quickly. How long is the temporary injunction in place? Until trial is over?

Poetry in Motion

That's usually how it works. Temporary injunction until the case us over at which time it becomes permanent or is invalidated.

Posted via the Android CrackBerry App!

Actually Kevin won the case for BlackBerry by doing the looks test.

All the people who showed that typo keyboard said it looks like a BlackBerry.

Maybe the judge is a fan of Crackberry.

A battle is won the war continues....

Posted via CB10

That same comment is said each time a typo vs BlackBerry post is written...someone's nose keeps getting browner.

 BlackBerry Q10  KEEP THE FAITH

Why jury-rig a fake when you can buy the real thing.
I believe the BB's are 'sale' priced now in the BB store.

My Z10 laughs at your shenanigans. Typo lawyers were awful! Some of their comments were hilarious like infringement of a product that sold poorly was somehow OK. Typo are still free to make a keyboard for any apple phone; it just needs to be one they design themselves.

Don't forget their argument that other OEMs have made similar looking keyboards in the past and BB never sued, like somehow it's okay because someone else did too. It's like their lawyers never left primary school

I was wondering if Chen's announcement today that BBRY was going to focus on keyboard devices had anything to do with it.

But either way, nyaaah, nyaaah
Hey Ryan....THIS is a BLACKBERRY phone!

Posted via CB10

Ryan Seacrest, go buy yourself a Q10 and be done with it. Hopefully they can get this Typo crap off the market ASAP.

Any iOS fans that happen to be the founder of this site will be saddened by this news.

Posted via CB10

Suck on that Seacrest! I knew you were going to loose...
Why don't you just go out and buy a BlackBerry?

Posted using the best phone ever, the Z30!

How anyone can think that the typo does not look like a BlackBerry keyboard is crazy. It's pretty much an exact copy of the Q10 keyboard. Glad to hear BlackBerry won the case.

BlackBerry for life. Kick'n it with my Z10.

Glad to hear BlackBerry prevail!!
Off subject has anyone else been experiencing problems with BlackBerry maps? Everything launches fine, list view has the directions, but when I hit the start route , it'll say , "getting route", then I'll get a 1013 no gps get to clear skies... does anyone know what us going on?

Flickety split

i can't believe they thot they can copy bb keyboard exactly and make money off other peoples work. Just cuz bb is a dieing company doesn't mean your allowed to rob them.

Did typo. Have the double typing issue? Cause mine is starting to piss me off little by little... (see the fullstop after typo above?...)

Posted via CB10

Seacrest stay away from Waterloo :) come back home to Hollywood. See what happened, you can never win those BlackBerry kingdom. Sad journey, hey there's earthquake going on in Los Angeles so that another bad news all in one day. Too bad Mr Typo!!!

Score one for BlackBerry!!! Glad to see the correct choice was made in a REAL patent infringement case...

Posted via CB10

You gotta appreciate the irony. Apple sues anyone who uses something that has a 0.1% resemblance to their products, yet has no qualms with this? I know they didn't make it, but as far as I remember they didn't voice protest to it either. Irony much?

Posted via CB10

How Typo would link to this article:

BlackBerry ... injunction against Typo ... barred[!]
Derek Kessler -

The Palm OS/WebOS guy. He's been, uh, redistributed, to a Mobile Nations writer and editor. Glad they kept him around. :)

Posted via CB10

With the exception of the forums his site is dead anyway. I stopped even checking it because I grew tired of his endless whining about HP killing WebOS.

Posted via the Android CrackBerry App!

Excellent News. It's a compliment though to the legacy of the BlackBerry keyboard that they're willing to imitate in its entirety. But all in all, excellent news. Long live the BlackBerry keyboard!!!!

from an australian Z10...

Another great job by BlackBerry :D , what is ours is ours, and we are gonna fight for it

Posted via CB10

Ryan seacrap sure lost out on this one! GO BLACKBERRY!! Kick ass like you did and keep kicking it HARDER AND HARDER!!!

I'm sure Kevin will gladly come as an expert witness.

And show the jury the unedited video of showing the Typo to some people.

Typo should sue their lawyers for poor representation. Bringing a case to trial where they a very poor chance of winning.

The BlackBerry keyboard is distinctive in design

As for advertising You Tube is very handy.

You have use guerrilla tactics.

BlackBerry...Get it done!!!

Posted via CB10

There was nothing to represent. They were wrong and they knew it. There is no winnable defense for that

Posted via the Android CrackBerry App!

Now maybe typo will be smart enough to pay a licensing fee, how did they think they could win?

Posted via CB10

It's kind of stupid when TYPO behaves as such. They should have gain much more if offering BB a partnership to sell the keyboard to iphone owners, with a BB logo on it :)

Now if you feel the need for a great keyboard, come along my iPhone friends, switch to the dark side #BlackBerry #Keyboard

Posted via CB10

From Europe at least you can still buy this fake... who really want to buy an iPhone with BlackBerry keyboard. Don't buy the copy, buy the original keyboard phone. At least you will be owner of your paid music and your privacy will be honored...

Are injunctions effective immediately? If so they are violating it. I can go to the website and order. The product. There's no indication that they cannot sell the product anywhere.

Posted via CB10

I don't think Apple uses care that much about it. I was just over at iMore and there isn't any mention of it anywhere, not even a forum post.

BlackBerry should make an equivalent typo for their full touch screen devices. A Z30 with an add on qwerty would be insane.

Posted via my Z10

Good! I'm sorry but in this case I have no sympathy for Typo. To me their product looks like a blatant rip-off. No matter how you slice and dice it, this is patent infringement!

Oh yeah, Ryan Seacrest...suck it!!!!

Cartman says: Screw you guys I'm going home!

When this is all said and done...curious about the total $ spent by Seacrest to have a BlackBerry keyboard experience on his mePhone---and how many Q10s that would convert to?

WTF...way too funny!!!

Peugeot 505 STI» Peugeot 405 Mi16» Honda S2000»...Chevrolet Corvette C7

Blackberry needs any funds it can get. If it were me I'd give an ultimatum, either we sue you, your business tanks and we take the idea and use it anyway or we kind of sue you, you stay a float, but we get a percentage of your sales.

Posted via the Android CrackBerry App!

Sorry but to hell with blackberry how about getting a percentage of those salesand cutting checks to people who bought a play book when it first came out or shedding that profit with people who actually bought their stocks or incentive packages for employees the let go to cut down cost. I don't understand how you guys can rally for a cooperation that makes mistakes and then screw customers and employees but pays the outgoing CEO millions and everyone is long live blackberry. FYI don't work for them sold my stock long ago and no I don't use an iPhone.

Didn't they sell this product over seas somewhere? I would sue typo and Ryan for money, and create a BlackBerry typo for iphone and make money.

Posted via CB10

If BB doesn't buy them out, maybe they could strike a licensing deal. Personally speaking though, I wouldn't mind seeing Typo fade directly into oblivion.

There goes me getting a typo! How much are they going for in ebay I wonder haha

Posted via CB10

Why?, the virtual KB on the Z30 is king of all it surveys!

Posted via CB10 on my sexy white Z30 rocking

The ban was not a foregone conclusion. It is very difficult to get injunctions of this nature granted in an infringement suit. A testament to the strength of their case and skill of their counsel.

And no need to add belittling smart-ass remarks about BlackBerry doing harm to themselves. It reduces your credibility and makes you sound about 13 years old.

Posted via CB10. [URL="bbmc:C001A8DC6"]Join C001A8DC6[/URL] for bento-inspired lunch ideas

This is true but in this case the infringement was pretty blatant and they had no real defense. It wasn't a certainty but it was a pretty strong bet.

Posted via the Android CrackBerry App!

I already new it as i said in my last BLACKBERRY vs Typo post I don't think it was that hard for the judge to make that ruling. But another job well dun for the blackberry lawyers dream team..

Posted via CB10

Well, anybody who doesn't see that typo keyboard as something other than a complete rip off is a... (complete the sentence) !

Posted via CB10

Good news!! BlackBerry needs some stuff in their favor. Go BlackBerry! Go John Chen!

Posted via CB10

Anyone watched the Typo website videos with WSJ and others commenting? All but one of them basically say it's the answer for those of you that hate typing on your iphone and miss typing on your blackberries. Even the Jimmy Fallon interview with Ryan Seacrest - Fallon says a couple times how much it's just like his old blackberry and Seacrest just ignores and moves on. Screw you Typo. Great idea, bad execution. If they didn't make it look exactly like the Q10 keyboard, they may have gotten away with it.

The Q20 should shut down all talk of the need for a peripheral keyboard.

Sent from my BlackBerry Z30