Jawbone Files Lawsuit against Fitbit

The battle of the wearables just took up another step forward after two of the leading companies pioneering the technology became involved in a legal dispute.

Jawbone, the maker of the UP fitness tracker band, has filed a lawsuit in a California court against Fitbit.

The lawsuit alleges rival Fitbit, which also makes health tracking devices, stating that it stole information and data about the company by poaching staff.

Lawyers for Jawbone claimed in the filing that this case has started out of concealed efforts of Fitbit to steal talent, trade secrets and intellectual property from its chief competitor, the New York Times reported.

The lawsuit's timing couldn't be worse for Fitbit which is about to embark on a $100m ($65m) IPO on the New York Stock Exchange.

The lawsuit has named five former Jawbone employees alongside Fitbit. It even claims that the staff took confidential data from Jawbone to Fitbit using USB devices.

It further alleges that a recruiter approached nearly a third of Jawbone's staff. Also one executive search consultant is reported to have said 'Fitbit's objective is to decimate Jawbone'.

Jawbone, which recently raised $300m in funding from investment firm Blackrock, is seeking compensation and to prevent company's former employees from disclosing any commercially sensitive information to outsiders.

Fitbit said, "Fitbit has no need to take information from Jawbone or any other company. We are unaware of any confidential or proprietary information of Jawbone in our possession and we intend to vigorously defend against these allegations".

The eight-year-old Fitbit has pioneered wearable technology and has played a vital role in popularizing fitness tracking devices which monitor areas of people's lives such as exercise and sleep.

Fitbit's IPO filing showed that it sold 10.9m devices in 2014 and its revenue grew to $37m in the first quarter of this year. It also claims to be the biggest seller of activity tracking devices in the United States.