Remember that time Apple decided to make a cell phone, and called it the iPhone? Remember how Cisco already owned that name and Apple settled a lawsuit out of court to license the rights to that name? Well, if Apple decides — as rumors say they may — to rename their Apple TV product to iTV, things might not be quite so easy. Mike Large, director of communications at ITV in the U.K. told Pocket-link that it would “vigorously defend” the company’s intellectual property; including its namesake. ITV is one of the U.K.’s oldest commercial television networks, and began broadcasting in 1955.
The company did not specifically say that they would go after the U.S. electronics maker should they change their set-top box’s product name, but they did say that ITV was “highly valued” and that they felt licensing the name to Apple would just “muddy the waters.”
Now, Apple could obviously name the product iTV in the U.S. and leave it as Apple TV in the U.K. where ITV’s trademarks are filed, but this is something that the Cupertino company has yet to do.
It’s all rumors and hearsay at this point, but it would appear as though ITV is ready to rumble.