Blackberry users still in dark

The rejection of RIMís (Research in Motion) petition by the High court has spelled bad news for Blackberry users. It might result in the possible shutdown of blackberry services, which could have dire effects on US economy.

The legal trouble for RIM started back in 2002 when NTP, a patent holding company, filed a suit against RIM claiming that Blackberry infringed on its patents.

NTP, Inc. is a Virginia-based patent holding company, whose real asset is a set of wireless email patents that were awarded to one of its founders Thomas Campana when he partly owned the company Telefind Corporation to which the patents were originally assigned.

A jury ruled in favor of NTP and awarded the company damages. Last year, RIM and NTP reached a tentative $450 million settlement, but the deal fell apart.

RIM had questioned in its appeal whether it should be subject to such a patent infringement ruling in U.S. courts given that the company's main e-mail switching facility was located outside the United States, in Canada.

Now over 4 million users wait with baited breath to see what happens on February 1, when legal briefs will be filed with a U.S. District Court Judge, who will consider an NTP request to shut down most of RIM's Blackberry sales and services in the United States.

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