Blackberry maker Research In Motion Ltd. (RIM) And Eatoni Ergonomics Inc. settled a two-year-old dispute on Oct 10 by agreeing to work together to develop a new ergonomic text keyboard technology.
According to a joint news release from RIM and Eatoni, the two companies will work jointly on the next generation of predictive text technology in ambiguous keyboards (two letters per key). As part of their new relationship Eatoni has granted RIM a license for a related United States patent and RIM has made an equity investment in Eatoni.
New York-based Eatoni specializes in the design of optimized hardware and software for ambiguous keyboards. Its designs include a scaled down keyboard designed to look and feel like a full QWERTY keyboard. Eatoni technology has been integrated into products and platforms that include remote controls, cordless phones and cell phones.
An Ontario-based company, RIM designs, manufactures and markets wireless solutions for the worldwide mobile communications market. It is best known for the BlackBerry® wireless platform and the RIM Wireless Handheld(TM) product line.
The agreement stems from a court settlement dating from 2005, when Eatoni took the BlackBerry® maker to court claiming several of its devices with ambiguous keyboards incorporated patented technology it had no right to use. RIM initially filed action against Eatoni seeking a judgment of non-infringement and invalidity of the patent in question, but Eatoni countersued alleging patent infringement and asking the court to ban the sale of RIM’s infringing products. The companies ended their dispute on October 11 with the agreement to collaborate.
The claims have been mutually dismissed and the two companies are keeping further details of the pact confidential
Source: Research In Motion Ltd. /Eatoni Ergonomics Inc.