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Battle of the Bands Gets Nasty as Jawbone Ups Fight With Fitbit

  • Companies are embroiled in battles over patents, trade secrets
  • Both face possible trade agency order banning products in U.S.
An employee walks on a treadmill inside a giant replica Fitbit watch.

An employee walks on a treadmill inside a giant replica Fitbit watch.

Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

The battle of the fitness bands is starting to look more like the Hunger Games with market leader Fitbit Inc. and its smaller rival Jawbone Inc. slugging it out.

What started as a routine patent dispute between the two makers of wearable fitness trackers has escalated in the past two weeks with allegations that Fitbit employees stole trade secrets and counter claims that Jawbone never should have gotten patents in the first place.