Research In Motion Loses Trademark Ruling for ‘BBX’

By Joseph Mandour on December 9, 2011

Set of touchscreen smartphones Orange County – The Canadian multinational telecommunications company, Research in Motion (RIM), has lost a major ruling in a trademark infringement battle with a small New Mexico software provider over use of BBX.

U.S. District Judge William P. Johnson ruled in favor of New Mexico-based Basis International by granting a temporary restraining order that will bar RIM from using the ‘BBX’ trademark for its new operating system at the DevCon conference in Singapore this week. By granting Basis’ request for the temporary restraining order, the judge concluded that “the BBX trademark is identical to the mark which RIM is allegedly using to present its BBX product.”

Basis’ trademark infringement and unfair competition complaint, filed last month in Albuquerque, alleged that RIM had already infringed on the BBX trademark, therefore causing confusion among U.S. consumers and erosion of customer good will, by using the ‘BBX’ trademark to advertise its new platform at a San Francisco conference back in October, thus justifying the request for the temporary restraining order. Apparently, at the conference, RIM had revealed its version of the BBX platform, which consists of elements of its older BlackBerry operating system with its next generation QNX software. According to the complaint, Basis has been in the software business for twenty-six years, providing its BBX branded tools and software products to software application developers.

RIM had high hopes that the advanced capabilities of BBX would catapult the company back into the smartphone game, but since the judge’s ruling, it has announced that it will change the name of its new operating system to the BlackBerry 10.

“BlackBerry 10 is the official name of the next generation platform that will power future BlackBerry smartphones,” the company stated.

Research In Motion, headquartered in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, designs, manufactures, and markets wireless solutions for the global cellular phone market. The company, founded in 1984 by Mike Lazaridis, has faced some recent setbacks. Most recently, RIM’s stock plunged after analyst concerns that it was no longer a player in the smartphone industry. Its most recent struggle was a global service outage that left BlackBerry users without e-mail access for three days.

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