Research In Motion Ltd., the company which manufactures the popular Blackberry devices is under a severe legal crisis. RIM is facing a patent infringement case filed by NTP Inc. This despite RIM’s public assurances that it had signed a 450 million dollar deal that would end the legal battle. Things are so bad that Blackberry sales could be halted by the court unless RIM can satisfy the demands of the small patent holding firm. RIM faces an injunction that could leave its 3.65 million U.S. customers without service unless the company settles its patent-infringement case with NTP Inc.
The company has met privately with some of its customers to reassure them that the service will not shut down and that a settlement is far likelier. But in public, RIM has said very little — in deference to the legal process, the company said. The company is rapidly loosing brand equity with consumers since then – the company remains silent on answering even the most basic questions to the general public (customers). Although RIM has not talked to the media or made public statements, it has met with some major customers and resellers privately, according to Guibert. Some customers said RIM assured them service will continue to operate and that a settlement is likelier than a shutdown. Northwest Airlines, a heavy corporate user of BlackBerrys, met with RIM last week. “We were satisfied with the information provided by RIM,” the company said in an e-mailed statement. “As far as contingency plans, we have identified alternative suppliers of similar service.”