The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has granted Apple’s application to trademark its “distinctive design and layout” of a retail store.
The store set-up is described as “[r]ectangular tables arranged in a line in the middle of the store parallel to the walls and extending from the storefront to the back of the store,” and is now protected by US Trademark 85036990. The design is further detailed:
There is multi-tiered shelving along the side walls, and a oblong table with stools located at the back of the store, set below video screens flush mounted on the back wall.
The trademark also includes the exterior, “a clear glass storefront surrounded by a paneled facade consisting of large, rectangular horizontal panels over the top of the glass front, and two narrower panels stacked on either side of the storefront.”
Notably, the mark does not include any particular color or include other aspects such as floors, walls, and fixtures, but “the placement of the various items are considered to be part of the overall mark.”
The Register out of the UK surmises that the appearance of stores in China that mimic Apple’s layout likely pushed the company to seek out protection of its store design; indeed, Apple has filed an international application that would provide protection in 19 other countries including China and several European countries as well.
What do you think of Apple’s trademark move?