RIM files fourth lawsuit against Good Technology

Research In Motion Ltd. (RIM) and Good Technology Inc. are at it again. RIM has filed its fourth lawsuit of the year against Good, citing a number of complaints including misappropriation of trade secrets and unfair competition, it said in a release Thursday.

The dispute originates from Good Technology's announcement in May of its GoodLink software, which allows users of RIM's popular wireless e-mail product, the BlackBerry, to wirelessly synchronize their task lists and address books. The BlackBerry wirelessly synchronizes e-mail and calendars, but needs a physical cradle to update the task list. RIM, based in Waterloo, Ontario, alleges that Good Technology copied and distributed RIM's operating system software from software development licensing kits, in breach of the licenses of those kits, according to a copy of the complaint. Good was then able to develop a product that worked so well with the BlackBerry due to its knowledge of the source code, RIM says in the complaint.

A Good Technology executive, Mark Johnson, is named specifically as a defendant in the suit. According to the complaint, he brought confidential information about RIM products from his previous employers, Cingular Wireless LLC, to Good Technology. Cingular was a strategic partner of RIM's, the complaint says. Johnson is currently a vice president of sales at Good Technology, which is based in Sunnyvale, California.

RIM also says that Good Technology, by exhorting BlackBerry users to download its software, is encouraging users to break their licensing agreement with RIM, which does not allow users to modify their operating systems.

The suit was filed in the Superior Court for the State of California in the County of Orange. It calls for restraining orders and permanent injunctions against Good Technology, Johnson and Green, as well as punitive damages and court costs.

RIM also sued handheld maker Handspring Inc. on Thursday, for patent infringement in the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware. RIM said the keyboard for Handspring's Treo has been shown to be "remarkably similar" to the BlackBerry's keyboard, and that it believes Handspring is infringing on a patent for that keyboard, according to a copy of that complaint.

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