Apple has been much in the news this New Year for the trademark related some sales related issues as that seen in China this year in the month of January. It opened online booking in China to overcome the same issue that took place. Recently Apple succeeded to win over Cisco for iPhone trademark but its problem doesn’t seem to come to an end as a fresh facing issue from the Taiwan’s company-Proview- for the iPad trademark, is again on the platter.
The situation depicts that Proview Technology could win somewhere from $38 million to $1.6 billion and also an apology from Apple, which is using the trademark in its Tablet lineups. Proview International registered the trademark name “iPad” in China and Taiwan in 2000 and 2001 respectively. Apple succeeded to buy “iPad” trademark for $55,000 in 2009 by the support of the company “IP Application Development”—but the deal was validated only for Taiwan.
“Apple obtained the iPad trademark by defrauding Proview Taiwan through tactics that involved explicit misrepresentations, and the use of foreign entities specifically created to perpetrate the fraud,” said Proview Taiwan spokesperson Cal Kenney, in a statement. “Proview Taiwan seeks the truth about who at Apple orchestrated the fraud, and the specifics of how it was implemented. Proview Taiwan believes that when the truth is exposed, the full weight of Apple’s fraudulent and nefarious behavior will be revealed and the appropriate remedies will be obtained.”
The use of trademark by Apple has damaged Proview’s market in China and in the US. In October 2010 Proview threatened Apple not to use its trademark, if not it would take legal action against the company. The report said that Proview registered the trademark “iPad” in several countries such as China, South Korea, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, Mexico, and EU. After long pursuance, Proview finally sued Apple in 2011, in retaliation for the same. Apple also counter-suited its own contention. Apple said that Cupertino, California based company was genuine owner of iPad trademark and the use of the trademark is quite ethic for the company. However, Apple failed to win the case against Proview.
In January 2010 Proview came back to Apple stating that two of the trademarks covering mainland China included in the original deal were actually owned by Proview Shenzhen and the price for those two trademarks will now be $10 million. The company has indicated it is willing to come to a settlement with Apple over the issue though the company has not indicated the amount it is seeking for the settlement.
Proview has filed separate lawsuits in local courts in two Chinese cities—Shenzhen and Huizhou– to withhold the selling and marketing of Apple’s iPad in the country. It’s a belief that Apple will lose its appeal in China where more than 122 million people still do not own a Smartphone, so the rate of penetration is expected to be high.
With the release of the iPad 3 to be in a few days from now, the trademark issue might prove to be a hindrance to the company and prove to be a problem for the company to reach the expected sales. The “iPad” which helped the company secure 26% of the mobile market the previous quarter, might no longer have the name which we know it by and might jeopardize the company’s upcoming Tablet’s sales as well.