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Apple Continues to Defend “App Store” Trademark

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Mac App Store by Rob Boudon on Flickr

Mac App Store by Rob Boudon on Flickr

Back in January, we talked about the trademark battle between Microsoft and Apple over the term “app store”; this issue is currently being considered by a U.S. Patent and Trademark Office appeals board, but that hasn’t stopped Apple from defending its ownership in the trademark.

Apple has recently sued online retailer Amazon.com, which this week opened the “Amazon Appstore for Android” to sell applications for Android-based devices; the company has also sent a cease and desist letter to a pornography company that had launched what it called the “world’s first mobile porn app store.”

Regarding Amazon, Apple contends that the online retailer is copying the “app store” name (despite removing the space between the two words) which “will confuse and mislead customers,” according to Apple spokeswoman Kristin Huguet as quoted in a Reuters article. The lawsuit, which was filed in the Northern District of California, also asserts a claim of unfair competition.

Amazon has not commented on the lawsuit, but as it also hasn’t taken down or changed the name of its store, it would seem the company is prepared to fight.

In other “app store” news, Apple has sent a cease and desist letter to MiKandi, which produces various Android-based adult entertainment applications. Apple objected to the use of the term “app store” in its description. As the company can’t afford to fight the lawsuit, according to PCMag.com, it has changed all instances of “app store” to “app market” in its materials.

As we noted in the January post regarding Apple’s trademark battle:

Remember a trademark is a name, logo, or any other symbol that distinguishes a company or products in the marketplace; if Apple were to be granted the trademark of “App Store,” only Apple could use the term to describe the place to go to buy computer applications.

What do you think about Apple’s defense of “app store?”

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March 24th, 2011 at 7:17 am

Posted in Intellectual Property

Tagged with , ,