BlackBerry is suing Facebook for patent infringement

BlackBerry is suing Facebook for patent infringement, alleging many of the features of Facebook’s messaging services infringe on BlackBerry patents, the company said Tuesday.

“[W]e have a strong claim that Facebook has infringed on our intellectual property, and after several years of dialogue, we also have an obligation to our shareholders to pursue appropriate legal remedies,” BlackBerry said in a release.

The company claims Facebook and its wholly owned services — Instagram and WhatsApp, which are also named as defendants in the suit — are “relative latecomers to the mobile messaging world.”

 Blackberry is seeking injunctive relief and damages accounting for lost profits. No specific dollar figure was given.

“Blackberry’s suit sadly reflects the current state of its messaging business. Having abandoned its efforts to innovate, Blackberry is now looking to tax the innovation of others. We intend to fight,” Facebook general counsel Paul Grewal said in a statement.

“We have a lot of respect for Facebook and the value they’ve placed on messaging capabilities, some of which were invented by BlackBerry. As a cybersecurity and embedded software leader, BlackBerry’s view is that Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp could make great partners in our drive toward a securely connected future, and we continue to hold this door open to them,” BlackBerry said.

Facebook “created mobile messaging applications that co-opt BlackBerry’s innovations, using a number of the innovative security, user interface, and functionality enhancing features that made BlackBerry’s products such a critical and commercial success in the first place,” according to the suit.

Blackberry is alleging that Facebook’s moves to integrate its services — for example, to allow for cross-platform notifications and allow Instagram users to share Stories directly to Facebook — are based on Blackberry’s patented technology.

The company also cited a CNBC report that Facebook would move WhatsApp off IBM‘s cloud services and into its own data centers.

BlackBerry sued Nokia claiming patent infringement in February 2017.

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