Date
23 October 2018
BlackBerry claims that Facebook's popular messaging applications copied technology invented by the former. Photo: Bloomberg
BlackBerry claims that Facebook's popular messaging applications copied technology invented by the former. Photo: Bloomberg

BlackBerry sues Facebook over messaging patents

BlackBerry has filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Facebook and its WhatsApp and Instagram apps, arguing that they copied technology and features from BlackBerry Messenger, Reuters reports.

“Defendants created mobile messaging applications that co-opt BlackBerry’s innovations, using a number of the innovative security, user interface, and functionality enhancing features,” BlackBerry said in a filing with a Los Angeles federal court, according to the report.

A spokeswoman for the Canada-based company was quoted as saying in an email that BlackBerry took the action as it needs to protect its shareholder assets and intellectual property.

The lawsuit followed years of negotiation, she said.

Facebook, meanwhile, said in a statement that it intends to fight the lawsuit.

“Blackerry’s suit sadly reflects the current state of its messaging business,” Facebook’s Deputy General Counsel Paul GrewalGrewal said in the statement.

“Having abandoned its efforts to innovate, Blackberry is now looking to tax the innovation of others.”

The BlackBerry action comes as it is trying to persuade other companies to pay licensing royalties to use its trove of more than 40,000 global patents on technology, Reuters noted.

BlackBerry’s patent portfolio includes technology related to operating systems, networking infrastructure, acoustics, messaging, automotive subsystems, cybersecurity and wireless communications.

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