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Apple has lost their legal claim to the iPhone name in Mexico

Posted: , by Scott H.

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Apple has lost their legal claim to the iPhone name in Mexico
Apple may have solved their trademark problems in China, but it appears they may have a bigger problem on its hands south of the U.S. border, as a court in Mexico City has denied an injunction that would have allowed Apple to continue to sell under the iPhone brand because it violates the trademarks of iFone, a Mexican telecommunications company. The ruling could have a major impact on Apple’s phone sales in Mexico, as well as affecting the marketing and sales plans of several wireless service providers in the country, some of which were gearing up to offer the iPhone 5 to customers this weekend.

It’s not actually clear what Apple was thinking this time around – the iFone trademark was filed in Mexico in 2003, a full four years before Apple filed to trademark the iPhone. Despite the rather obvious priority issue, Apple decided to sue iFone in 2009 in an attempt to invalidate the company’s name for being too similar to the iPhone. The predictable response was a countersuit by iFone, and the court battles have been swinging in iFone’s favor ever since.

The move could prove costly to Apple in more ways than one. In addition to losing the ability to sell devices under the iPhone trademark in Mexico, iFone is also suing for damages for past infringement, asking for a minimum of 40% of all iPhone sales to date in the Mexican market. While those numbers aren’t nearly as large as they are in the U.S., it still would represent a substantial payment. It's not yet clear whether the embargo on using the iPhone name will go into effect before sales of the iPhone 5 start on Friday, or if this will trigger Apple to loosen the purse strings to negotiate a settlement with iFone, but given the circumstances it would seem that Apple has precious little leverage this time around.

Clearly lawsuits can be a double-edged sword.

source: El Universal via Electronista

105 Comments
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posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:07 83

1. Jphones (Posts: 234; Member since: 10 Feb 2012)


haha viva la revolution. Apple stop acting like its apples and pears. iFone will win because unlike you there lawsuits aren't iphoney.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:10 48

3. PhenomFaz (Posts: 1078; Member since: 26 Sep 2012)


I coouldnt have said it better myself...its very ironic the patent thing Apple started has come back around to bite it in its butt!

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:17 44

9. ZEUS.the.thunder.god (unregistered)


wow .. now I really wish ifone was registered in more countries. Now I love ifone lol

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 19:01 11

59. someones4 (Posts: 619; Member since: 16 Sep 2012)


They will lose the only thing from them that sounded original

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 20:47 18

71. MeoCao (unregistered)


Apple has become so arrogant it lost the sense of reality.

They think they are Justice itself and allowed to do anything as they please?

It's like a robber suing his victim.

Well done Mexico!

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 18:23 32

52. whysoserious (Posts: 316; Member since: 20 Jul 2012)


" the iFone trademark was filed in Mexico in 2003, a full four years before Apple filed to trademark the iPhone. Despite the rather obvious priority issue, Apple decided to sue iFone in 2009 in an attempt to invalidate the company’s name for being too similar to the iPhone."

Oh God. I don't know if Apple is playing bully, or just being plain stupid. No wonder why Judge Koh thinks Apple and their legal team is on crack.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 22:49 19

77. TheMan (Posts: 403; Member since: 21 Sep 2012)


Apple game plan:

1. Sue into submission.
2. Repeat Step 1.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 20:27 8

68. squallz506 (banned) (Posts: 1075; Member since: 19 Oct 2011)


#mexicanjustice

posted on 02 Nov 2012, 09:50

95. elnegro (Posts: 1; Member since: 02 Nov 2012)


jajajaja

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 23:55 16

82. vishu9 (Posts: 251; Member since: 03 Mar 2011)


Lol..Now there will be a bigger bite in that Apple logo :D

posted on 02 Nov 2012, 04:59 6

85. MeoCao (unregistered)


haha, you made my day

posted on 02 Nov 2012, 12:59 2

98. cdnfreak (Posts: 26; Member since: 13 Mar 2012)


Actually if you want to get really technical, Cisco came up with the name iphone in 1998 for their internet phone, well before either company was even on the radar.

posted on 04 Nov 2012, 15:39

105. cbush1018 (Posts: 1; Member since: 04 Nov 2012)


actually that was called IP phone.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:08 42

2. gabe92 (Posts: 27; Member since: 25 Oct 2012)


ahaha thats what they deserve.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 19:57 1

64. Mxyzptlk (Posts: 3552; Member since: 21 Apr 2012)


I guess no one cares about protecting intellectual property.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 20:09 23

66. PapaSmurf (Posts: 8300; Member since: 14 May 2012)


Maybe you didn't read the second paragraph.

iFone filed their trademark back 2003 and Apple filed the trademark for iPhone in 2007. That's a four year difference. What Apple wants to do, because they have some balls, is to try to invalidate the trademark even though they files theirs four years later.

This just proves you're seriously brainwashed and totally biased in EVERYTHING.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 20:43 13

70. someones4 (Posts: 619; Member since: 16 Sep 2012)


In this case, they did. IFone protected their intellectual property from Apple

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 21:25 18

74. networkdood (Posts: 6267; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)


Are you really that DUMB?? Seriously?? The Mexican company had it first - now it is spelled differently and APPLE has a ton of money - I am sure a couple billion Pesos a year may clear up the situation.

Seriously, Mxy, you need to start using that brain of yours - you are starting to sound like an 8-yr old, and that is an insult to my 8 yr old son.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 22:55 13

78. ojdidit84 (Posts: 331; Member since: 16 Jul 2011)


Apple didn't originally come up with the names for iOS or iPhone. Both names were taken from Cisco's VoIP phones and router/switch OS. They license both trademarks from Cisco.

http://www.idownloadblog.com/2012/01/27/apple-cisco-iphone-trademark/

http://blogs.cisco.com/news/cisco_and_apple_agreement_on_ios_trademark/

Just to give you a little perspective on the company that you blindly support.

posted on 02 Nov 2012, 12:53 1

96. GeekMovement (Posts: 1501; Member since: 09 Sep 2011)


Talk about

brain-washed.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:10 29

4. AnTuTu (Posts: 815; Member since: 14 Oct 2012)


50% Apple has been rotten so far and old black days have been started.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 18:50 21

57. someones4 (Posts: 619; Member since: 16 Sep 2012)


I love the smell of victory in the morning. I hope it makes them think twice before trying to go against other companies.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 19:57

65. Mxyzptlk (Posts: 3552; Member since: 21 Apr 2012)


This isn't victory.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 20:11 14

67. PapaSmurf (Posts: 8300; Member since: 14 May 2012)


It isn't for Apple.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 20:49 10

72. someones4 (Posts: 619; Member since: 16 Sep 2012)


You are right, it isn't a victory. Not until, Apple has paid every company it has wronged (samsung, motorola)
or reduced to the humble company it once was.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 23:46 7

81. cncrim (Posts: 504; Member since: 15 Aug 2011)


I have a feel you are Taco just diffirent name, we don't see Taco lately but you.

posted on 02 Nov 2012, 09:46 1

94. seronis (Posts: 1; Member since: 02 Nov 2012)


Its a clear victory for the company that is clearly in the right.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:10 25

5. downphoenix (Posts: 2329; Member since: 19 Jun 2010)


Cant defend apple on this one. The company clearly existed before the iphone did.

I cant see Apple trying to claim that they got that name based on apple's ipod naming, but I dont see that going far since nobody probably even thought about Apple making a phone back in 2003.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:35 11

16. roldefol (Posts: 2868; Member since: 28 Jan 2011)


And even if people thought Apple would make an "iPhone" back then, they had no idea it would be the wildly successful all-touch app monster we ultimately got. Early concepts were just an iPod with calling features and the familiar click wheel. There were a lot of naysayers about Apple's ability to break into the phone market as recently as 2006. So for Apple to say the iFone name was somehow obviously theirs is just arrogant.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 17:02 6

39. cheetah2k (Posts: 817; Member since: 16 Jan 2011)


Oh, but for sure there will be prior art.... Just wait, they'll find it on some old napkin Jobs wrote on in some restaurant back in 2001 - after watching 2001 A Space Odessy the movie.. HAHAHAHAHAH Effing Apple

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 17:26 8

48. -box- (Posts: 3797; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)


Not only that, iPhone was a CISCO name before apple stole it, then bought it from them (and not nearly enough)

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:11 20

6. smdeezy (Posts: 66; Member since: 17 Jun 2011)


Wow. This is Apple just trying to be a bully here. I'm glad they are going to lose this one and I hope it hurts a little.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:48 17

19. corporateJP (Posts: 1555; Member since: 28 Nov 2009)


Karma.

You know what they say about it...

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:13 17

7. BuddyGlass (Posts: 20; Member since: 11 Jun 2012)


What goes around, comes around...

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:14 18

8. androiddownsouth (Posts: 598; Member since: 02 May 2012)


BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!....*gasp catch breath*.....BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!!!!!!!!..​...*pass out*

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:19 5

10. Kronic (banned) (Posts: 321; Member since: 11 Sep 2012)


Why not just quit operating in mexico

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 18:30 1

54. JulianGT (Posts: 82; Member since: 15 Oct 2012)


NO ¬¬

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:20 12

11. Aeires (unregistered)


http://ca.news.yahoo.com/blogs/right-click/apple-threatens-sue-small-german-cafe-logo-205037880.html

Karma.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:21 14

12. maxican16 (Posts: 363; Member since: 29 Sep 2011)


This is what you get for trying to play bully to everyone.. justice at its finest!

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:22 27

13. TheRetroReplay (Posts: 245; Member since: 20 Mar 2012)


"the iFone trademark was filed in Mexico in 2003, a full four years before Apple filed to trademark the iPhone. Despite the rather obvious priority issue, Apple decided to sue iFone in 2009 in an attempt to invalidate the company’s name for being too similar to the iPhone."

That is the dumbest thing I have ever heard Apple doing.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:31 14

15. blingblingthing (Posts: 434; Member since: 23 Oct 2012)


They must think this is the us patent office where you can make applications for vague patents and trademark retangularly edged cell phones.

Oh and wanting Sammy to pay 30$ to use your patents while wanting to pay Sammy 0.017 to use their patents is crazy. Hope the Mexican if one gets their 40%.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:50 5

20. corporateJP (Posts: 1555; Member since: 28 Nov 2009)


Whoever thought these guys were smart in the first place, they're in for a suprise.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 16:45 2

37. UBhacked (Posts: 4; Member since: 03 Apr 2012)


You just said it!

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 19:00 3

58. Googlethis (Posts: 170; Member since: 05 Jul 2012)


Thats apple for yah.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:25 3

14. Nathan_ingx (Posts: 3012; Member since: 07 Mar 2012)


What's done has been done!
Now let's move on...and think what Apple will rename the i(whispers)Phone...
I'm guessing iPat (short for patent)!

posted on 02 Nov 2012, 09:21 1

89. -box- (Posts: 3797; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)


Probably something silly like ipod voice or something.

posted on 02 Nov 2012, 09:42

93. Nathan_ingx (Posts: 3012; Member since: 07 Mar 2012)


lol!! Liked!!

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:43 3

17. roldefol (Posts: 2868; Member since: 28 Jan 2011)


Hasn't Apple resolved issues like this in the past by simply licensing the name? That's certainly lower risk than attempting to sue your way into owning it. Definitely preferable to losing all rights to your own product name and marketing, even if it's "only" Mexico.

posted on 02 Nov 2012, 09:22

90. -box- (Posts: 3797; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)


Apple's first step when there's an issue is to litigate. I wonder if they get a bulk discount on billable hours with their lawyers....

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:46 1

18. gallitoking (Posts: 4690; Member since: 17 May 2011)


thats what happens when you reach the heights Apple has.... hope they settle as the ifone allied with Apple could reach new heights..

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:51 5

21. corporateJP (Posts: 1555; Member since: 28 Nov 2009)


Ha ha ha...you're still a funny dude.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:55 3

23. AnTuTu (Posts: 815; Member since: 14 Oct 2012)


Which heights are you talking about mate? If you are talking about heights then Apple's head-office should be at Mt. Everest :p

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 23:17 2

80. someones4 (Posts: 619; Member since: 16 Sep 2012)


or in the bottomless pits of Hell

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 16:02 6

26. mas11 (Posts: 1029; Member since: 30 Mar 2012)


You mean you become a cocky asshole that thinks he owns everyone.

posted on 02 Nov 2012, 15:51

99. androiddownsouth (Posts: 598; Member since: 02 May 2012)


Become? Apple is already there dude, and has set up camp lol.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 16:25 3

31. rusticguy (Posts: 2828; Member since: 11 Aug 2012)


Apple is getting back what it deserves from market so they have to give that bloated ego a little "prick" so that they shun that shameless arrogance of theirs and compete in market rather than courts ...

Even Columbian Drug Lord reaches hieghts but has anyone gone about suing them in such force

Apple has been like this since the famous theft at XEROX :)

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 16:46 5

38. Stuntman (Posts: 720; Member since: 01 Aug 2011)


You are correct about what happens when you reach the heights Apple has. Before, Cisco actually had a device called the iPhone many years before Apple's iPhone. Apple ended up working about an agreement with Cisco. Now, Apple doesn't bother working out agreements. They just try to bully other guys like this Mexican company. If they had entered negotiations instead of filing the law suit, maybe things would have worked out better for Apple.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 19:14 2

61. tedkord (Posts: 4802; Member since: 17 Jun 2009)


Do you ever get dizzy from all that spinning?

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:54 5

22. mas11 (Posts: 1029; Member since: 30 Mar 2012)


So Apple sued them first even though, "the iFone trademark was filed in Mexico in 2003." Yep sounds like Apple they steal others ideas, call them their own then sue the true inventor.

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 15:56 3

24. Mr.Mr.Upgrade (Posts: 425; Member since: 30 Aug 2011)


see what happens when you open Pandoras box

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