Michael Arrington of TechCrunch has filed a federal lawsuit against Fusion Garage over the former CrunchPad tablet, which is now currently called the Joo Joo tablet.
The suit - filed in a Northern California District Court - accuses Fusion Garage of fraud and deceit, misappropriation of business ideas and unfair competition.
“This was the first time I’ve ever filed a lawsuit, and it was certainly not the way I thought the whole CrunchPad project would end when I first wrote about the idea in July 2008,” Michael Arrington wrote on TechCrunch.
A few people have suggested that we can't own any IP in the CrunchPad because we are just a blog. That's not correct. The entire blueprint of the device was created by me. And we also have hired direct resources, including the former head of hardware at Vudu, as well as very high level software engineers, who have worked directly on the project here and in Singapore with the Fusion Garage team.
According to Arrington, much of the key intellectual property - including the board and much of the mechanicals - is owned by Pegatron, the manufacturing arm of Asus. Apparently Fusion Garage is no longer working with Pegatron and hired out a new ODM to complete the tablet. Arrington says he wouldn’t be surprised if Fusion Garage gets hit with another suit from Pegatron.
Meanwhile, Fusion Garage CEO Chandrasekar “Chandra” Rathakrishnan denies Arrington’s claims and insisted his company was the brain-power behind the tablet.
“The Joo Joo tablet – including the hardware and UI – was built and designed by Fusion Garage. We have been working on [this device] since February 2008,” Chandra told TG Daily.
The JooJoo pad costs $500 and can be pre-ordered here starting at midnight, December 11th.