Twitter Hit with Patent Lawsuit


Dec. 19 2018, Updated 3:20 p.m. ET

Twitter accused of violating messaging technology patent

Rainey Circuit, a Texas patent holding company, has sued Twitter (TWTR) over an alleged patent infringement, according to Reuters. The disputed patent relates to messaging technology and was originally granted to Germany conglomerate Siemens (SIEGY). Rainey Circuit is currently the holder of the patent.

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Social media companies battling patent suits

With this suit, Twitter joins fellow social media companies Facebook (FB) and Snap (SNAP) in battling patent lawsuits that touch on key features of their products. In March, BlackBerry (BB) accused Facebook of infringing on its mobile messaging patents. A month later, it made similar patent infringement claims against Snap, the parent of Snapchat. As it continues to defend itself in court, Facebook also sued BlackBerry in September, accusing it of infringing on its patent related to voice messaging technology, TechCrunch reported.

Twitter’s monthly subscribers declined to 326 million

Twitter closed the third quarter with 326 million monthly users on its social network, down from 335 million users in the previous quarter. Despite the decline in audience size, Twitter’s revenue rose 29% YoY to $758 million in the third quarter, outpacing 21% YoY revenue growth at Google parent Alphabet (GOOGL) and 8.0% YoY revenue growth at Yelp (YELP) in the same period. Facebook and Snap grew their third-quarter revenues by 33% and 43% YoY, respectively.

Twitter generates most of its revenue from advertising, which accounted for 85.8% of its total revenue in the third quarter. Aside from advertising, Twitter’s other source of revenue is data licensing.


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