If employees are using their own smartphones, tablets or computers outside the normal course of their employment, such as on evenings or weekends, can employers make any claim to IP ownership? Perhaps the IP ownership determination would turn on whether an employee was working on an employer’s project or if an employment agreement carved out a 24/7 IP ownership claim.
When companies started issuing BlackBerry phones, the world changed. With the advent of the iPhone and Android, the world changed again. Employees started using the newer, hotter technologies, and many carried the company BlackBerry and the iPhone or an Android handset but did not like carrying two devices — one for work and one for personal stuff.
Some, but not many companies, started issuing iPhones and Android phones. Others simply said “Bring Your Own Device” and either supplemented the costs or did not. Either way, employers had to figure out how to support the new BYOD world.