BlackBerry is Suing Ryan Seacrest Startup Over iPhone Case

BlackBerry is suing Typo Products over an iPhone case that looks and functions a lot like the Waterloo-based smartphone maker’s iconic keyboard.

Cofounder by television personality Ryan Seacrest, Typo’s case attaches to an iPhone, equipping the all-touch device with a physical Qwerty keyboard—and making it look a lot like a BlackBerry Bold or Q10 in the process.

Documents filed in a California court note that BlackBerry believes Typo is trying to capitalize on the Canadian company’s “commercial recognition and goodwill,” and that the similar product is “likely to continue to cause confusion [and] falsely suggest a connection between Typo, its products, and its commercial activities with BlackBerry.”

While none of BlackBerry’s allegations have been proven in court, a victory would demolish Typo: BlackBerry is seeking damages, all of Typo’s products, and a stop to all future sales of the keyboard case.

“We are flattered by the desire to graft our keyboard onto other smartphones, but we will not tolerate such activity without fair compensation for using our intellectual property and our technological innovations,” Blackberry chief legal officer Steve Zipperstein said in a release.

Typo’s case is slated to begin shipping this month.

Photo: CNET