iPhone Keyboard Maker 'Typo' Ordered to Pay BlackBerry $860,000

Typo Products, a company that developed a BlackBerry-esque keyboard case for the iPhone, must pay BlackBerry $860,000 for continuing to sell its Typo case despite being ordered to cease sales in March.

The Typo keyboard was first announced in December of 2013 and was backed by media personality Ryan Seacrest (of American Idol fame). Seacrest reportedly invested $1 million into the product, which was the result of a desire to introduce a physical keyboard for the iPhone.

According to Seacrest and his partner Lauren Hallier, they saw many of their friends carrying two phones -- one for typing and correspondence, presumably a Blackberry, and an iPhone for everything else. The keyboard that the duo developed, which snapped onto an iPhone, bore a marked resemblance to BlackBerry's signature keyboards, a fact that did not go unnoticed by the company.

typoblackberry

Original Typo iPhone case next to the BlackBerry Q10

Just a month after the Typo keyboard was announced, BlackBerry filed a lawsuit accusing Typo Products of "blatantly" copying the BlackBerry keyboard and infringing on BlackBerry patents. A judge agreed with BlackBerry, handing down the aforementioned injunction that banned the Typo from selling its keyboards, despite Typo's argument that it was not harming BlackBerry as BlackBerry was already losing market share.

Typo ignored the injunction and continued selling its Typo keyboard cases, leading BlackBerry to file a contempt of court order in August, which resulted in today's $860,000 fine. BlackBerry had initially asked for $2.6 million in penalties, plus attorneys' fees for the violation.

In addition to continuing to sell the original keyboard case, Typo Products introduced the Typo2 keyboard for the iPhone 6 in December of 2014, which it says does not infringe on any BlackBerry patents. Typo2 features a sleeker design with a built-in keyboard that unfortunately blocks the Touch ID fingerprint sensor on the iPhone 6. Typo's website currently sells Typo2 keyboards for both the iPhone 5/5s and the iPhone 6.

typoiphone6

Typo2 for iPhone 6

In response to the fine levied against it, a Typo representative told Re/code that the ruling is "part of the ongoing patent litigation related to the initial Typo product" and that it "has no impact on the Typo 2." A BlackBerry representative only had this to say: "The court's order speaks for itself."

Top Rated Comments

saintforlife Avatar
120 months ago
BBRY stock up 5% on expectation that it will be their best quarterly earnings since 2007 on the back of the $840K windfall from Typo.
Score: 32 Votes (Like | Disagree)
SoAnyway Avatar
120 months ago
That $860,000 is probably the most money Blackberry will make this year.
Score: 31 Votes (Like | Disagree)
thekeyring Avatar
120 months ago
Well, that will keep Blackberry going a little longer.
Score: 30 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Small White Car Avatar
120 months ago
You've gotta admire a company that names their sole product a word that literally means "mistake."

I also love someone who, when accused of hurting someone, decides to argue that it's ok because they're alreay dying anyway.
Score: 29 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MartinAppleGuy Avatar
120 months ago
So we all now know Blackberrys 2015 yearly profit will be exactly $860,000 ;)
Score: 24 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MICMAC247 Avatar
120 months ago
Seacrest out.
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

Provenance Emulator

PlayStation, GameCube, Wii, and SEGA Emulator for iPhone and Apple TV Coming to App Store

Friday April 19, 2024 8:29 am PDT by
The lead developer of the multi-emulator app Provenance has told iMore that his team is working towards releasing the app on the App Store, but he did not provide a timeframe. Provenance is a frontend for many existing emulators, and it would allow iPhone and Apple TV users to emulate games released for a wide variety of classic game consoles, including the original PlayStation, GameCube, Wii,...
iPhone 15 Pro FineWoven

Apple Reportedly Stops Production of FineWoven Accessories

Sunday April 21, 2024 6:03 am PDT by
Apple has stopped production of FineWoven accessories, according to the Apple leaker and prototype collector known as "Kosutami." In a post on X (formerly Twitter), Kosutami explained that Apple has stopped production of FineWoven accessories due to its poor durability. The company may move to another non-leather material for its premium accessories in the future. Kosutami has revealed...
Delta Feature

Delta Game Emulator Now Available From App Store on iPhone

Wednesday April 17, 2024 9:58 am PDT by
Game emulator apps have come and gone since Apple announced App Store support for them on April 5, but now popular game emulator Delta from developer Riley Testut is available for download. Testut is known as the developer behind GBA4iOS, an open-source emulator that was available for a brief time more than a decade ago. GBA4iOS led to Delta, an emulator that has been available outside of...
iPhone 15 Pro Action Button Translate

All iPhone 16 Models to Feature Action Button, But Usefulness Debated

Tuesday April 16, 2024 6:54 am PDT by
Last September, Apple's iPhone 15 Pro models debuted with a new customizable Action button, offering faster access to a handful of functions, as well as the ability to assign Shortcuts. Apple is poised to include the feature on all upcoming iPhone 16 models, so we asked iPhone 15 Pro users what their experience has been with the additional button so far. The Action button replaces the switch ...