Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Apple does not own "iPad" in China

Apple, Inc. lost a trademark dispute in China against local monitor vendor Proview Technology. Proview registered 'iPAD' and 'IPAD' as its trademarks in 2000 in China and several other countries.

Last Apple filed two lawsuits against Proview claiming that the latter infringed on its trademarks. 

In 2009, the Taiwanese subsidiary of Proview sold the 'iPAD' and 'IPAD' trademark to UK company IP Applications. In 2010, IP Applications  sold them to Apple for about $55,000.

However, the Court in China ruled that the transfer of the trademarks was not valid since it was the Taiwanese subsidiary which carried out the sale and not the Chinese parent company. and thus the parent company retained the right to use the trademarks on the Chinese mainland. Am a bit hazy with this part since it seems that the court recognized the transfer of the iPad Trademark, just not its use in China.

Proview has filed its own trademark infringement lawsuit against Apple, and is after US$1.5 billion in compensation.
Apple can appeal the decision, but it  may have to settle with Proview if it want's to sell its iPad under the "iPad" name in China now.

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