According to boutique law firm Envision IP, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) may have infringed on some BlackBerry Ltd. (TSX:BB)(NASDAQ:BBRY) patents with its latest iPhone. We take a closer look at Envision IP’s argument below.

Haptic feedback

The issue here relates to what Apple calls “3D Touch,” which is more commonly referred to as haptic feedback. In plain English, the technology enables a handset’s screen to sense multiple levels of pressure.

Haptic feedback allows Apple to introduce a host of new functions into its phones. For example, users can press down on an address in a text message to look it up on Apple Maps. Or from the home screen, you could press down on the email application’s icon to send a new message.

Here’s the problem: BlackBerry (known as Research in Motion at the time) was the first company to incorporate haptic feedback into a smartphone. Ironically, it was the BlackBerry Storm, which was supposed to be an “iPhone killer” that featured the technology.

And sure enough, Envision found at least 40 patents owned by BlackBerry related to haptic feedback. For example, BlackBerry has patented technology that enables screens to offer click-like feedback (similar to a mouse) when pressed.

An uphill battle

Apple has its own patents related to haptic feedback—Envision counted 14 of them in total. And the company seems to have its own take on the technology. For example, iPhone 6s screens will not feature any click-like features.

So, BlackBerry might have a very difficult time fighting Apple on this one. Making matters worse, Apple, of course, has far more resources at its disposal, and tends to fight fiercely in patent battles. Thus, BlackBerry may be better off sitting this fight out.

What does this all mean for BlackBerry?

According to numerous sources, BlackBerry is set for its own big handset release in a couple of months. The phone dubbed “Venice” will feature the Android operating system. It’s the first time BlackBerry is using Android in one of its handsets, and is probably the company’s last chance to stem declines in its handset market share.

Of course, a November release date would allow people to buy the phone during the Christmas shopping season. But with the release of the iPhone 6s, it’s unlikely the Venice will be on anyone’s Christmas list. So, you shouldn’t expect too much from this phone.

Ultimately, BlackBerry’s success will depend on the Enterprise Mobility Management market, which is where the company has shifted its focus. So, if you’re a shareholder, this is where you should be expecting results to come from.

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Fool contributor Benjamin Sinclair has no position in any stocks mentioned. David Gardner owns shares of Apple. The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple.