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BlackBerry Ltd settles patent dispute with Ryan Seacrest’s Typo

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BlackBerry announced today that the company has finally solved its “outstanding legal disputes” with Typo, a company cofounded by Ryan Seacrest and Lawrence Hallier.  Typo Products LLC made iPhone accessories that would allow users to type into their iPhone with a physical keyboard instead of the touch keyboard that is standard on all iPhones.  Typo’s keyboard accessories sold for $79 to $99 depending on your iPhone model.  Ryan Seacrest cofounded the company in 2013. Shares of BlackBerry are slightly up in premarket trading by $0.02 to $9.82.

Typo to halt sales of its products around the world

As part of the settlement agreement, Typo Products has agreed to stop selling its physical keyboard accessories around the world for smartphones that have screen sizes of less than 7.9 in, according to BlackBerry.  BlackBerry originally went after Typo after they released their first product in February 2014.  After winning a preliminary junction, BlackBerry once again sued Typo after its second model, Typo2, was released.  “Just as they did with the Typo Keyboard, Defendants have again copied numerous proprietary BlackBerry designs and patents in the Typo2 Keyboard,” according to the filed complaint against Typo (Globe and Mail).

Morgan Stanley still not impressed with BlackBerry, rates stock “underweight”

An article was published on May 31st that detailed Morgan Stanley analysts’ view on BlackBerry.  After conducting their research, the analysts concluded that the company is not likely to meet full year 2016 targets due to slipping enterprise customer orders, lack of aggressive approach to cut expenses, and a weak user base.  Morgan Stanley rates shares of BlackBerry at “underweight” and provide a price target of $7.00.  As you can tell, BlackBerry still continues to drag its feet and continue to underperform for one reason or another.

Overall, BlackBerry was successfully able to knock down a micro-cap competitor, but the writing on the wall is not positive for BlackBerry moving forward.  With enterprise sales dipping at BlackBerry, there continues to be a lack of aggressiveness on the part of management to help stave off losses and cut costs in the meantime. This is why Morgan Stanley analysts downgraded the stock and are bearish on their fiscal 2016 results.  Overall, BlackBerry may have beaten Ryan Seacrest’s Typo Products LLC, but there are much bigger issues on the horizon for BlackBerry.

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