Case Makers Go To Court In Ding-Dong Fight Over Teardown Designs
Case-maker Casetify, who Brisbane-based distributor Cellnet recently picked up, is now being sold in JB Hi-Fi stores and is facing legal action for apparently ripping off designs of a competitor.
Legal action has been launched in a bitter fight over teardown covers.
Dbrand, who are well known for their own knock-offs of Sony and Nintendo designs, is suing Hong Kong based rival Casetify, over claims it blatantly copied Dbrand’s Teardown device skins and cases, which are made to look like the internals of a mobile or tablet device.
Dbrand initially kicked off the idea of ‘teardown covers’ in partnership with JerryRigEverything (Zack Nelson), a YouTuber who breaks down new devices and sometimes even gives them transparent mods.
His content has appeared on both SmartHouse and ChannelNews.
The Teardown skins and cases make it look as if you’ve taken your entire device apart and slapped on a transparent backing.
Dbrand claims that Casetify took all of its work and designs to use on its own phone cases.
Within 24 hours of Dbrand’s lawsuit going public, Casetify pulled the offending case lineup from sale on its website while insisting it’s “always been a bastion of originality”.
The ding-dong battle between the two brands kicked off when Casetify launched a similar line of phone cases called Inside Parts, which similarly puts an image of the components inside your phone on the outside.
However, users noticed something wasn’t quite right with the designs. In March, one user on X pointed out that Casetify appeared to be reusing the image of the same internals across different phone models, which means they didn’t accurately represent the insides of each device they were sold for.
The Verge pointed out that Dbrand called out Casetify’s apparent gaffe in a video posted to X, which shows how Casetify seemed to have recycled the same design across Apple, Samsung, and Google devices, with a mocking caption reading “iNsiDe PaRtS.” Just months after Dbrand posted its response to Casetify, the company returned with a new line of transparent-style phone cases called Inside Out.
This time, the images are consistent with the devices the cases are made for — and Dbrand claims that’s because Casetify stole its designs. However, Dbrand alleges Casetify also attempted to conceal the copycats by rearranging parts of the designs to make them look slightly different. (You can see this example in the video embedded above.)
There’s some pretty strong evidence backing up Dbrand’s accusations, too. Dbrand spotted the many Easter eggs it planted within its own designs on Casetify’s Inside Out products.
That includes the “R0807” tag, which alludes to Dbrand’s tagline as a brand run by robots, as well as the JerryRigEverything catchphrase “glass is glass and glass breaks.”
Dbrand claims Casetify allegedly copied 117 different designs, down to the many digital manipulations it made to the images.
Dbrand says it holds registered copyrights for each of these products, all of which were registered before Casetify’s product launch.
Instead of issuing a cease-and-desist order, Dbrand is hitting Casetify with a federal lawsuit in Canadian courts, where the company is based, and seeking eight figures in damages.
It didn’t give Casetify any warning, either — which ended up pulling the cases in question from the Casetify website within 24 hours of the lawsuit going public.
“We are currently investigating a copyright allegation against us,” Casetify says in a statement on X. “We have immediately removed all the designs in question from all platforms.” The company also says it’s looking into a DDOS attack that “disrupted” its website “when the allegation surfaced.”