Social media and advertising giant Facebook has filed a lawsuit against BlackBerry, the Canadian software provider for business applications. In what appears to be a tit-for-tat move, Facebook is claiming that BlackBerry infringed on its patents related to voice-messaging technology. BlackBerry had similarly filed a lawsuit against Facebook some months ago in March for infringing on its existing patents for mobile-messaging technology on Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp.
Facebook claims that a total of six patents have been infringed upon by BlackBerry, including technology related to graphics on mobile devices, centralized GPS tracking and analysis. The lawsuit has been filed in the San Francisco federal court, according to a report by Bloomberg.
Notably, the BlackBerry in question here is the original company, and not the current smartphone operation that we know of. BlackBerry licenses out its brand to various manufacturers, including China-based TCL and India-based Optiemus Infracom, which now manufacture BlackBerry devices. The existing enterprise remains based in Canada, but has changed its product offerings to corporate software services after an inglorious fall from grace. The company once manufactured its own line of smartphones which were popular among corporate and regular users alike.
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Facebook, on the other hand, has had a tumultuous year so far, with the Cambridge Analytica scandal putting a huge dent in user confidence. The security leak meant that user data and preferences of millions of users was leaked to a private data analytics firm, which could then have used that information to influence the US Presidential Election of 2016. The latest lawsuit appears to be entirely retaliatory, based on BlackBerry’s own patent infringement claims in its March 2018 lawsuit.