iCloud Communications sues Apple over ‘iCloud’ trademark

By on June 13, 2011 at 3:10 PM.

iCloud Communications sues Apple over ‘iCloud’ trademark

A firm named iCloud Communications has filed a lawsuit against Apple over its “iCloud” trademark. Apple announced the new cloud storage and sync service dubbed iCloud during its WWDC keynote last week, and iCloud Communications now wants the Cupertino-based tech giant to get rid of “all labels, signs, prints, insignia, letterhead, brochures, business cards, invoices and any other written or recorded material or advertisements” referring to the service. The company argues that Apple’s iCloud service is closely related to iCloud Communications’ business:

The goods and services with which Apple intends to use the “iCloud” mark are identical to or closely related to the goods and services that have been offered by iCloud Communications under the iCloud Marks since its formation in 2005.  However, due to the worldwide media coverage given to and generated by Apple’s announcement of its “iCloud” services and the ensuing saturation advertising campaign pursued by Apple, the media and the general public have quickly come to associate the mark “iCloud” with Apple, rather than iCloud Communications.

iCloud Communications said that Apple consistently uses trademarks owned by others, and references other legal battles over trademarks for the iPhone, iAd, Mighty Mouse, iPad, and even the name Apple itself. The company is asking for “all monetary damages sustained and to be sustained … including lost profits and reasonable royalties,” as well as “all profits, gains and advantages obtained from Apple’s unlawful conduct,” in damages. More →

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Samsung’s lawyers demand access to iPhone 5, iPad 3

By on May 30, 2011 at 12:40 PM.

Samsung’s lawyers demand access to iPhone 5, iPad 3

After a federal judge ordered Samsung to grant Apple access to several unreleased devices last week, the Korean electronics giant responded by demanding the same access to Apple’s unannounced iPhone 5 and iPad 3. Apple and Samsung are currently tied up in a legal battle surrounding Apple’s claims that several new Samsung devices “copy Apple’s technology, user interface and innovative style.” A judge granted Apple access to Samsung’s Galaxy S II, Galaxy Tab 8.9, Galaxy Tab 10.1, Infuse 4G, and DROID Charge in order to help the company determine whether or not to request an early injunction. In turn, Samsung’s lawyers on Friday filed a motion requesting access to Apple’s next-generation iPhone and iPad. Samsung claims it needs to examine the devices in order to evaluate any possible similarities so it can prepare for possible further legal action from Apple. The judge has not yet determined whether or not Samsung will be granted access to the devices. More →

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Amazon responds to Apple's 'baseless' app store lawsuit

By on April 26, 2011 at 3:43 PM.

Amazon responds to Apple's 'baseless' app store lawsuit

Amazon on Monday issued its response in court to a lawsuit filed last month by Apple alleging that Amazon’s use of the term “Appstore” infringes on Apple’s “App Store” trademark. Apple’s suit looks to bar Amazon from using the term alongside its new Amazon Appstore for Android. In its response, Amazon called Apple’s claims baseless and insisted that “app store” is a generic term. Amazon even cited Apple’s recent quarterly earnings call, where Steve Jobs himself uses the term to describe Google’s Android Marketplace. “So there will be at least four app stores on Android, which customers must search among to find the app they want and developers will need to work with to distribute their apps and get paid,” Jobs said while criticizing Android on the call. “This is going to be a mess for both users and developers. Contrast this with Apple’s integrated App Store, which offers users the easiest-to-use largest app store in the world, preloaded on every iPhone.” Amazon has also filed a countersuit in which it has asked the court to dismiss Apple’s claim, order Apple to reimburse Amazon for attorney’s fees, and decree that Amazon’s use of the term “Appstore” does not infringe on Apple’s trademarks. More →

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HTC applies for ‘EVO View 4G’ trademark; confirms WiMAX Flyer tablet for Sprint?

By on March 8, 2011 at 7:31 AM.

HTC applies for ‘EVO View 4G’ trademark; confirms WiMAX Flyer tablet for Sprint?

Hot on the heels of yesterday’s rumor — which claimed Sprint would be unveiling a trio of high-end devices at CTIA — Taiwanese electronics manufacturer HTC has applied for a trademark patent on the name “EVO View 4G.” The name has been thrown around over the past few days, and it is wildly assumed that the device is Sprint’s iteration of the HTC Flyer tablet with a WiMAX radio. CTIA is just a few short weeks away, so if you’re a Sprint customer craving a high-end tablet, you’re going to have some choices to make. Do you go for the stylus-toting, single-core, Android 2.4 View 4G, or do you wait for a dual-core device rocking Honeycomb? More →

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Apple, Microsoft continue battle over ‘App Store’ trademark

By on March 1, 2011 at 7:49 PM.

Apple, Microsoft continue battle over ‘App Store’ trademark

Although corporate lawsuits are, for the most part, dull and boring, they can occasionally provide comedic relief. Back in January, we told you about a little nomenclature spat brewing between technology giants Microsoft and Apple. The Redmond-based Windows maker filed a complaint with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office claiming that Apple was attempting to trademark a generic term, “App Store.” In its January filing, Microsoft argued that the term App Store is “generic for retail store services featuring apps” and that Apple should not be granted a trademark due to the “genericness” of the phrase. Kind of a funny choice of words from a company holding trademarks on Marketplace, Windows, and Office, don’t you think? Fast forward to today, and Apple has submitted its rebuttal.

Having itself faced a decades-long genericness challenge to its claimed WINDOWS mark, Microsoft should be well aware that the focus in evaluating genericness is on the mark as a whole and requires a fact-intensive assessment of the primary significance of the term to a substantial majority of the relevant public. Yet, Microsoft, missing the forest for the trees, does not base its motion on a comprehensive evaluation of how the relevant public understands the term APP STORE as a whole. What it offers instead are out-of-context and misleading snippets of material printed by its outside counsel from the internet and allegations regarding how the public allegedly interprets the constituent parts of the term APP STORE, i.e., ‘app’ and ‘store.’

It’s been a fairly humorous affair up to this point. No word on when the USPTO will be rendering a decision on the case. More →

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Apple applies for trademark on ‘Places’ in EU, China; hints at social network?

By on February 25, 2011 at 2:49 PM.

Apple applies for trademark on ‘Places’ in EU, China; hints at social network?

Cupertino based Apple, Inc. has filed for a trademark on the word “Places” in both the European Union and China, reports Patently Apple. The original filing was submitted on February 23rd and covers international classes 009, 041, 042, and 045. The first three classes cover a hodgepodge of computer services, software, and hardware. But class 045 pertains specifically to social networking services; “providing a social networking website; assisting in the locating of people using a global positioning system (GPS).” Apple has already dipped its toe in the social networking pool with its Ping music discovery service, which, as far as we can tell, no one uses. For the past few years, the company has used the “places” name in its iPhoto and iOS software, although, that doesn’t seem worthy of a full trademark filing. Any guesses?

More →

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Microsoft objects to Apple’s ‘App Store’ trademark application

By on January 12, 2011 at 8:27 AM.

Microsoft objects to Apple’s ‘App Store’ trademark application

Microsoft has asked the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) to deny a trademark request by Apple, Inc. on the name “App Store.” The Redmond software giant called the term “generic” and thinks “competitors should be able to use it.” The trademark application for “App Store” is currently listed as pendingin the USPTO’s system; the Cupertino company has already been granted trademark protection on its App Store slogan “there’s an app for that.”

“‘App store’ is a generic name that Apple should not be permitted to usurp for its exclusive use. Competitors should be free to use ‘app store’ to identify their own stores and the services offered in conjunction with those stores,” said a Microsoft representative.

The opposition was filed on January 10th; Apple has yet to publicly comment on Microsoft’s appeal. More →

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‘HTC Scribe’ trademarks describe a tablet computer

By on December 30, 2010 at 2:01 PM.

‘HTC Scribe’ trademarks describe a tablet computer

HTC filed two trademarks this week in order to protect the name of an upcoming tablet. Presumed to be the company’s first entry into the tablet PC space, HTC has trademarked “HTC Scribe” and “Scribe.” According to the description found on each filing, the HTC Scribe will be a “handheld wireless device, namely, a tablet computer.” HTC is expected to launch at least one tablet in early 2011, and it reportedly run the upcoming tablet-optimized version of Google’s Android operating system — Honeycomb. Other rumored specs include the NVIDIA Tegra 2 dual-core processor, 2GB of internal memory, microSDHC support and a 1280 x 720-pixel touchscreen display. HTC has not yet confirmed that it is working on a tablet product, having stated only that the company is evaluating the tablet PC market. Hit the break for more details on HTC’s new trademarks. More →

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Motorola’s tablet to be named Xoom?

By on December 22, 2010 at 2:44 PM.

Motorola’s tablet to be named Xoom?

Electronics maker Motorola has been quietly filing for patents on the name “Xoom” the world over. The Internet is not-so-quietly speculating that Xoom could be the moniker given to the company’s Android-based tablet that has already made several cameos. Moto has, thus far, filed for protections in the U.S., EU, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and Taiwan. If this is in fact the name to be given to the company’s tablet, we at BGR would like to congratulate Motorola for not including the seemingly obligatory suffix “pad” anywhere in the device’s name. More →

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PlayStation Phone to be named ‘Xperia Play’?

By on December 21, 2010 at 2:41 PM.

PlayStation Phone to be named ‘Xperia Play’?

A new trademark filing uncovered Tuesday suggests that the Sony Ericsson PlayStation Phone may launch as the “Xperia Play.” One of the earliest sources of information surrounding the still-unannounced smartphone suggested that the device would launch with Xperia branding, and this is the first indication that the rumor could be true. The news is anything but confirmed, however. Here’s what we know: Sony Ericsson has applied for a European trademark for “Xperia Play,” along with other trademarks such as “Xperia Duo,” “Xperia Arc” and “Xperia Neo.” One of the company’s PR firms has also registered http://www.xperiaplay.com and several other related domain names. So, it’s a safe bet that Sony Ericsson has something in store for the moniker and while its first PlayStation-equipped Android phone is the obvious assumption, nothing is confirmed at this point. Hit the break for two videos of the upcoming device in action. More →

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Apple granted 'there's an app for that' trademark

By on October 12, 2010 at 10:22 AM.

Apple granted 'there's an app for that' trademark

If, for whatever reason, you aren’t fond of Apple’s “there’s an app for that” slogan, you might not love the following news. The U.S. patent and trademark office has granted Apple, Inc. a trademark for their oh-so-familiar App Store slogan, “there’s an app for that.” The filing was initially made in December of 2009 and, just recently, the slogan was legally given to Apple. After all, there’s an app for that™ looks way better than there’s an app for that… right? More →

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iTV rumors have ITV trademark holder preparing for battle?

By on August 13, 2010 at 3:15 PM.

iTV rumors have ITV trademark holder preparing for battle?

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. More →

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Apple licenses liquid metal technologies, amorphous metals coming to iDevices?

By on August 9, 2010 at 6:01 PM.

Apple licenses liquid metal technologies, amorphous metals coming to iDevices?

In a recent SEC filing, Liquidmetal Technologies — a company that develops and commercializes amorphous metals — signed an agreement with Apple, Inc. that granted the iDevice maker licensing to all of Liquidmetal’s intellectual property. The filing reads:

On August 5, 2010, Liquidmetal Technologies, Inc., a Delaware corporation (“Liquidmetal”), entered into a Master Transaction Agreement with Apple Inc., a California corporation (“Apple”), pursuant to which (i) Liquidmetal contributed substantially all of its intellectual property assets to a newly organized special-purpose, wholly-owned subsidiary (the “IP Company”), (ii) the IP Company granted to Apple a perpetual, worldwide, fully-paid, exclusive license to commercialize such intellectual property in the field of consumer electronic products in exchange for a license fee, and (iii) the IP Company granted back to Liquidmetal a perpetual, worldwide, fully-paid, exclusive license to commercialize such intellectual property in all other fields of use (together with all ancillary agreements, the “Master Transaction Agreement”).

Amorphous metals could be desirable to mobile electronics makers for their overall durability and flexibility in manufacturing. Plus, who could forget that high-end luxury cell phone manufacturer Vertu used Liquidmetal Alloy in their Ascent series (and even demonstrated them being run over by a Porsche to showcase their durability). More →

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