Google and many others are sued for infringing on the Android trademark

Google and many others are sued for infringing on the Android trademark
Erich Specht runs a business called Android Data Corporation and another one entitled Android Dungeon Inc. In a lawuit that started in an Illinois State Court last week, Mr. Specht is suing Google, the Open Handset Alliance, and 45 other companies including Samsung, Motorola, Sony Ericsson and T-Mobile over the use of the Android name. A software developer and Internet Service Provider, Mr. Sprecht had filed to protect the name "Android Data" on June 4, 2000. The request was granted on October 22, 2000. The Patent and Trademark Office required Specht to agree not to file any claims against the "Data" part of his company's name.

On Halloween Day, 2007, Google filed with the PTO to trademark the name "Android" which was denied because of the possible confusion between Google's "Android" name and Eric Specht's "Android Data". So Google did what many companies do when the government puts the kibosh on a project-they ignored the Agency, going ahead and using the Android name anyway. Specht wants the defendants to be enjoined from using the Android name and he wants damages. One thing in his favor for sure is that this could be the record for the deepest pockets ever seen for a group of defendants. Now we know why the Android robot is green.

source: TG Daily via EngadgetMobile



1. madesina

Posts: 24; Member since: Oct 05, 2008

Wow!! This could be huge!! But it'll be an out of court settlement surely.?

2. techie123

Posts: 54; Member since: Mar 25, 2009

What a stupid law suit. Specht needs to show confusion between Android Data and Android OS. The only reason people even know the name Android is because Google has spent millions promoting it. This guy should be grateful for Google for giving him more exposure than he would have gotten otherwise. He's in business since 2002 and he's basically an unknown ISP in an obscure part of Illinois and does not even use the Android Data name anymore. This guy is just trying to hit the jackpot. This is the problem with the American legal system, people can sue for any stupid thing. Also, people should not be able to trademark a single word that is already in the dictionary, this practice will always lead to trouble. You should only be able to trademark a phrase that has never been spoken/written before or a new made-up word. I hope that Google just crushes this stupid guy. He does not deserve a dime! Read this article for more information:

3. Jyakotu

Posts: 867; Member since: Dec 12, 2008

Oh please, Google knew that the Android named was all ready in use, but they still used it anyway. Google could've chosen a different name if they wanted to. Don't try to stand up for Google.

4. techie123

Posts: 54; Member since: Mar 25, 2009

5. Dood

Posts: 269; Member since: Mar 23, 2009

I'll be seeing you in court, kid.

9. techie123

Posts: 54; Member since: Mar 25, 2009

OK, I'll agree that Google went ahead knowing the risks, but... the term "android" was first used by St. Albertus Magnus in 1270 Germany. Should his descendants be allowed to sue? Also, the term "android" appears in US patents as early as 1863 ( Therefore not so unique after all. I'm telling you this Specht guy has only GAINED by this controversy - he has NO damages that he can prove, only GAIN. I still do not think Specht deserves a dime!

6. panacea224

Posts: 19; Member since: Dec 20, 2008

This is ridiculous. It's a waste of the resources of the US legal system. I think it's absurd that someone can for all intensive purposes claim ownership of a word, besides Google isn't even using the word in the same way. He uses it as the name of his businesses and Google is using for the name of an operating system. This suit should be dismissed outright.

7. Legion

Posts: 397; Member since: Dec 12, 2008

You are completely right, however U.S. patent law allows for such lunacy.

8. Astromanaught

Posts: 46; Member since: Mar 11, 2009

Trademarking does have a very valid reason, but like it has been stated, one word trademarks should only be used for either made up words. even just a two word trademark would be acceptable, example, Complete Controls or something like that is a unique enough combanation of words to be awarded a trademark (In the example, two companys both have the same name, but one is complete controls inc, and one is complete controls llc) On the other hand, he does have a valid lawsuit; Google knew of the possibility of a trademark infringement, but went ahead anyway.

10. techie123

Posts: 54; Member since: Mar 25, 2009

Also, I bet this guy's attorney is taking this case on contingency, which means he gets nothing if his client gets nothing. This should simply not be allowed. This is the greed of the American Tort system at its worst. They both could retire if they hit the jackpot and happen to win this case. Neither Specht nor his attorney deserve a dime!

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit for samples and additional information.