DBrand Sues Casetify for Stealing Their Teardown Skin Designs

Casetify makes skins using recycled materials, and recycled ideas.

Image: JerryRigEverything/Dbrand

Remember back in the early 2000s when you added that cool-looking sticker to your Nokia phone to show off and make everyone know how unique you are? Today, that quirk is still around. There are numerous options to make your phone uniquely yours, not just from the software but to how it looks physically. You can add a case to it, a customized tempered glass, or a skin. There are many manufacturers of smartphone skins globally, Dbrand and Casetify are just two examples.

Of course, with each smartphone skin you make, you want it to be unique. Those 10,000 hours worth of work from scanning the device to measuring them in Adobe Photoshop, then finally, printing it to slap it on your phone. All worth it. But what if someone just blatantly copies your design and profits it off?

That’s what Casetify did to Dbrand’s Teardown skins. Teardown is a series of smartphone skins made in collaboration with Zack, better known as “JerryRigEverything” on YouTube. These skins are meticulously crafted and each and every phone was disassembled to make the design as accurate and as precise as possible with the phone’s internal parts. Not just that, Dbrand also added a few notable easter eggs for longtime fans of JerryRigEverything, including his famous catchphrase “glass is glass and glass breaks”. A real manufacturer like Samsung will obviously not add these. It adds to the originality of the skins.

JerryRigEverything and DBrand is suing Casetify for blatantly stealing the teardown skins. Yes, the Easter eggs are included. Unlike Dbrand’s, Casetify’s version is low quality and clearly is just saving an image from Dbrand’s website and then call it theirs. For Casetify, the series is known as “Inside Out”. Which, by the way, when the sequel is out next year, we’ll be there to review the film. We can’t wait to see how they play Anxiety.

To confirm Dbrand’s suspicions, the company purchased a few of Casetify’s Inside Out skins and then tested them by placing these skins on their MacBooks and smartphones. Also, after scrutinizing in their website, Dbrand found out that Casetify stole 117 designs that Dbrand holds copyrights of.

“If Casetify had simply created their own Teardown-esque design from scratch, we wouldn’t have anything to take issue with,” Dbrand CEO Adam Ijaz tells The Verge. “We are under no illusion that dbrand owns the idea of taking apart phones and scanning them. The fact of the matter is that they repurposed our existing designs for their products, then went to great lengths to conceal their illegitimate appropriation of our work.”

When they got caught, Casetify suddenly experienced website downtime and when they got back up, the Inside Out series is gone. At first, they just used the iPhone 15 Pro’s internal parts for every phone, including the Google Pixel, and the MacBook for every laptop. Users are quick to notice and so Casetify changed the design, or so many thought.

Just right after the lawsuit was enacted, Dbrand announced a new set of Xray skins for smartphones. Behind the scenes, instead of scanning smartphones and recreating the skins through Photoshop, Dbrand instead used an industrial Xray scanner from Haven Metrology to scan the internal parts of the phone. These skins show the insides of the phone which would be otherwise not possible just by taking it apart. It comes in Black and White and for a limited time only, users who pre-order can get the second colour for free.

Dbrand CEO Adam Ijaz said that the lawsuit is not about the cash, but about sending a message that plagiarism is theft and immoral. This was also the case for JerryRigEverything. Ijaz did, however, encourage many of the brand’s fans to purchase the new Xray skins to support the lawsuit.

Source: The Verge