Fitbit is found not guilty after Jawbone's accusations

(Image Credit: iStockPhoto/franckreporter)

Jawbone launched a case against Fitbit last year after concerns the company poached its staff and used their inside knowledge to get an edge over its rival whilst also infringing on several patents, but a judge has ruled against the accusations. 

Jawbone, a company which has seemingly gone into retreat, was said to have wanted to block Fitbit from importing their devices into the US.  As one of Fitbit's biggest markets, the company would have taken a serious hit if blocked from the US and provided a significant opportunity for Jawbone to grab some of its commanding 32.6% market share in the wearables space. 

Sales of Fitbit's wearable devices were up about 25% in the first quarter of the year, according to data from IDC. Back in March, the company announced it has shipped more than one million Fitbit Blaze devices in its first month of availability, exceeding internal sales forecasts. During this time, Fitbit Blaze captured the ranking of #1 best-selling device in both the smart watch and heart monitor categories on Amazon. 

Fitbit CEO, James Park, said that Jawbone had attempted "to disrupt Fitbit's momentum to compensate for their own lack of success in the market." 

The case has been going on for over a year and it seemed at one point that Jawbone was heading towards winning the case after a San Francisco judge ruled that former Jawbone employees had breached their contracts when they left to join Fitbit. 

Whilst this debate is now closed, the fight over patents will continue in federal courts after Jawbone accused Fitbit of infringing three of its patents. We all know how long patent cases often go on for – so we're not expecting any news soon – but with Jawbone facing devaluation amid reports of attempting to sell its business, the company is sure to be throwing everything it can at winning these cases. 

Fitness trackers such as those offered by Fitbit and Jawbone are thought to be reaching their peak, and both companies are said to be looking into the advanced world of medical-grade wearables for their next growth opportunity (if they can wrangle all the regulations.) Right now, Fitbit looks in a much healthier position to make their next venture a success. 

Are you surprised at the result of Jawbone's case against Fitbit? Share your thoughts in the comments.

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