Apple comes out swinging on iPhone trademark skirmish

Apple comes out swinging on iPhone trademark skirmish

Summary: The iPhone saga just won't end. The latest wrinkle came last night when Cisco sued Apple for infringing on its iPhone trademark.

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TOPICS: Cisco
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The iPhone saga just won't end. The latest wrinkle came last night when Cisco sued Apple for infringing on its iPhone trademark. Now we have to cook up alternate names. Here's the full complaint.

It's unclear how all of this will turn out. My initial hunch was Cisco and Apple would settle, but then News.com recapped the diplomacy between the two parties. Cisco says it's just defending its trademark. Here's Apple's stance as told to News.com:

"We think Cisco's trademark suit is silly...We believe (their) trademark registration is tenuous at best," said Natalie Kerris, an Apple spokeswoman.

"There are already several companies using the iPhone name for VoIP (voice over IP) products," Kerris said. "We're the first company ever to use iPhone for a cell phone. If Cisco wants to challenge us on it, we're confident we'll prevail."

Hmm. So much for a quiet settlement. The most interesting development in this battle: Public opinion--as judged via comments on News.com and ZDNet--seems to be aligned against Apple. Seems like a no brainer given Apple's actions, but when was the last time the company was actually dinged in the PR department?

[poll id=41]

Topic: Cisco

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9 comments
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  • So, are you and Dan ashamed enough?

    Of publishing that false piece about Steve Jobs' health, just before the show?
    Narr vi
    • read the post

      I noted the rumor and added that shortsellers may be behind it. I didn't proclaim--or represent it to be--fact.
      Larry Dignan
  • IMHO...

    You should be given a reasonable amount of time to have a PRODUCT that uses the trademarked name, or you forfeit it.

    It's the only way to stop this "Name Hording" that's so common.

    Does Cisco even have a product called iPhone? They registered it in 1999. They have had time.
    BitTwiddler
    • Yes Cisco does have them

      Cisco is selling the Linksys iPhone line which are SIP or Skype Wireless phones.
      antares256
      • Not to mention...

        What was the story that was out awhile back? Apple suing some company for making a product called the something or other Pod, because the word "Pod" Apple contends is not a silly trademark argument for them. But iPhone is a silly trademark argument for someone else.

        Between the shenanigans Microsoft pulls and the nonsense Apple has been pulling you can bet all we need is Google, ebay, Intel, Yahoo and AMD to get into the fight and we will have a real world war going.
        Cayble
  • Option #4

    Add this choice to your poll:

    More free publicity for Apple and their Jesus Phone.
    tic swayback
  • iPhone goes MOBILE with a Capital I (ie, lowercase)

    iMOBILE, iMOBILE, or MacMobile
    Techpert
  • iPhone Name

    As long as the word "Apple" comes before "iPhone" I don't see a problem. iPhone will be used as a generic, just like "fax." As for Cisco saying it isn't about the money: "Yeah, right."
    attywhalen@...
    • Bad analogy...

      [b]...iPhone will be used as a generic, just like "fax."[/b]

      Fax is short for Facscimile. There hasn't been a branded product by that name. Now, if you were to say Kleenex or Xerox to refer to nose wipes or photocopying documents, then you would be more accurate.
      Wolfie2K3