BlackBerry Ltd has won a preliminary injunction against Typo Products, the Ryan Seacrest-owned maker of a case for iPhones that includes a BlackBerry-style keypad.
The order issued Friday by U.S. District Judge William Orrick bars Typo from selling the $99 iPhone case because BlackBerry convinced Orrick its keyboard was a critical driver in the demand for its little phones.
Orrick found that BlackBerry was likely to prevail on its claim of patent infringement against Typo and thus blocked any further sales until the dispute is resolved.
Typo is a startup company founded in August 2013 and it s sole product is an iPhone case with a physical keyboard. The iPhone does not have a keyboard but relies on the screen keyboard.
“BlackBerry has convincingly shown that BlackBerry’s keyboard designs are a key driver of demand and goodwill for BlackBerry phones,” Orrick wrote. “Typo’s keyboard directly targets the signment of smartphoen users that prefer a physicial keyboard, the market in which BlackBerry competes,” he said.
To the extent Typo succeeds in allowing consumers to replace their phone for an iPhone with a keyboard, it does so at the expense of BlackBerry, he said.
He ordered BlackBerry to post a security bond if Typo later wins the case.
Typo can not make, sell or offer for sale, market or promote the Typo Keyboard case, Orrick’s order states.
Case: BlackBerry v. Typo Products, No. 14-cv-0023WHO