November 25, 2020

TikTok and parent company ByteDance have sued rival app Triller

A man holding a phone walks past a sign of Chinese company ByteDance’s app TikTok, known locally as Douyin, at the International Artificial Products Expo in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, China October 18, 2019.


Social media app TikTok and its Chinese parent ByteDance are fighting back in a patent infringement case that has been brought by smaller rival Triller in the U.S.

The companies filed a case in San Francisco federal court Wednesday in response to a patent infringement lawsuit that social video platform Triller filed in July in Waco, Texas. The patent in question relates to creating music videos synchronized with audio.

Triller claims that TikTok and ByteDance have been infringing its patents and using its technology for years. ByteDance denies this and argues that Triller’s allegations have “cast a cloud” over its business.

ByteDance is now requesting a court order that it, its products, and its users don’t infringe upon the patent and that none of them are liable for damages or injunctive relief.

“A judicial declaration is necessary to resolve the real, immediate, and justiciable controversy concerning these issues and to determine the respective rights of the parties,” lawyers representing ByteDance and TikTok wrote.

TikTok and Triller did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for comment.

Social video app TikTok is wildly popular and has been downloaded around 2 billion times worldwide. In August, it announced that it had 100 million monthly active users in the U.S. and in September, it announced that it had hit the same milestone in Europe.

Triller said it had 100 million monthly active users but former employees have questioned the figure.

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