Apple Applies for Trademark of iPhone Design

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Oct 18, 2007.

  1. macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    MacNN reports that Apple has filed two patent trademark applications for "iPhone design trademark protection".
    The trademark applications were reportedly accompanied by a number of photographs and newspaper clippings depicting the iPhone.

    Article Link
  2. macrumors 68000

    Oct 8, 2003
  3. macrumors 65816


    Jul 24, 2007
  4. macrumors 604


    Dec 31, 2004
    "No escape from Reality..."
    At least it won't be "locked" or a "carrier exclusive"...

    And if it's highly customizable - guess what icons we're going to use... ;)

    (runs and hides...)
  5. macrumors 6502a


    Jan 8, 2007
    Wow, just wow. Are you fraking serious?

    This reminds me very much of that movie "Coming to America" with Eddie Murphy. Where the restaurant owner that employed Eddie said "We're McDowels... McDonalds has the Golden Arches....we have have the Golden Archs"
  6. macrumors 68000

    Oct 8, 2003
    I know you're being funny here, but in neneral Nokia phones sold by US cell phone carriers are locked, and often are only available from one carrier.
  7. macrumors 65816

    Jun 4, 2005
    Orange County, CA
    That Nokia phone is a fake. It was a model just used to demo their new UI, which is pretty close to the iPhone's UI.
  8. macrumors 65816

    Jun 4, 2005
    Orange County, CA
    Yeah, but most Nokia phones can be taken out of the country and unlocked by Nokia or your carrier. I don't quite see the hubbub about the iPhone being unlocked in the U.S., as the only other option is T-Mobile, and T-Mobile doesn't have an iPhone data plan, but I can see why people would like to keep their phones if they move out of the country.
  9. macrumors newbie

    Sep 5, 2007
    Why didn't Apple do this earlier? They had to assume that other phone manufacturers would copy their design.:confused:
  10. macrumors regular

    Jul 22, 2007
    Ehh, isn't this an application for a trademark? Not a patent? I think it is more so that they can lay claim to the iPhone photo as distinctly theirs? I think it's more of a safety net for apple, so that not everyone can place a picture of the iphone in products and services provided by other vendors.

    Apple already has patent the design of the iPhone.
  11. macrumors 68000


    Apr 27, 2006
    in your pants
    Well it won't stop the Chinese copying industry, but it'll stop Nokia. And would this also protect against something as blatant as this?
  12. macrumors 604


    Dec 31, 2004
    "No escape from Reality..."
    You can buy unlocked Nokia phones from or from one of their stores... there's one here in Chicago...
  13. macrumors 68040


    Nov 26, 2003
    It was a prototype, not a fake.

    You can see the whole thing here.

    Personally, I think "Good for Apple". Other handset manufacturers should produce different form factors, not just lazily rip off the big screen, home button and organic oblong shape.
  14. macrumors 65816

    Jun 25, 2007
    Bellevue, WA
    That Nokia phone looks so much better and packed with features.... I believe. :rolleyes:
  15. macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

    Oct 9, 2006
    it going to be fairly limited in what it can do though because a lot of the so called copy phones have been long enough to be able to claim they where not coping and not to really be effected by it.
  16. macrumors 6502


    Sep 10, 2007
    Urgent Help!!!!!!!!!!!!

    nevermind, just found it. no need to panic, just a little excited
  17. macrumors 68020


    Mar 1, 2004
    As mentioned above, I can see why they're doing this, but the majority of the fakes / look-a-likes come from China, or that is to say, are made and used in China. No amount of patents and trademarks will ever stop them being made there, they really don't care who owns what.

    On windows. You can only use Outlook I believe. So your options are not to sync your data, or start using Outlook as your e-mail client.
  18. macrumors 6502a


    Jan 11, 2007
    Wales, UK
    i love at the end of the video the woman says "its what nokia always has done."
  19. macrumors 68000

    Oct 8, 2003
    Especially when just before the iPhone came out, Nokia were announcing that they weren't interested in Touch Screen phones.
  20. macrumors regular


    Sep 24, 2006
    Apple has nothing to fear from Nokia, or MS for that matter. The beauty of the iPhone is the home button - most of what you want is a simple click and point away. You're never scrolling through menus for anything but specific contacts, songs, calendar entries and the like. The Nokia and MS interfaces shown in this thread can't touch that.

    I can't believe Apple waited this long to TM the hardware, however.
  21. macrumors 68040


    Nov 26, 2003
    I don't think it's a case of waiting this long, more a case of taking this long to put together as good a case as possible and collect all necessary evidence.

    These things have to stand up in a court of law.

    Apple doesn't want to see other companies think they have a right to steal its IP just because iPhone is popular.
  22. macrumors 6502a


    Jun 7, 2006
    I think apple should sue till theres no tommorow any chinese company that copys the iPhone interface or design
  23. macrumors newbie

    Oct 22, 2007
    unlike other IP regimes (e.g. patent) registration / filing date is not as important for trademark protection

    date is relevant for enforcement, but not for priority of use, which Apple clearly could establish regardless of its date of registration (i.e. nobody else could get away with registering the same trademark, either before or after Apple's registration)

    (this doesn't completely answer your question however...)

    USPTO links:
  24. macrumors 68040


    Jan 16, 2005
    Bay Area, CA
    Actually, none of that matters. A trademark doesn't protect a product design from being copied. It protects advertising. People won't be able to use iPhones in ads and won't be able to make it look like people are using iPhones.

    They didn't do it right away because it's not terribly important. This will just stop other companies from trading on the iPhone design for their own marketing advantage. It has almost nothing to do with stopping knockoffs from being made.
  25. macrumors newbie

    Oct 22, 2007
    What doesn't matter? I don't understand.

    It certainly could if enforced (whether enforcement would occur where knock-offs would likely be manufactured is another issue...) If you look at USPTO application #77303256 you'll see that it is for the design of the iPhone: "The mark consists of the configuration of a handheld mobile digital electronic device"

    Regarding enforcement, trademark protection accrues with actual use, however a trademark registrant can sue in federal court (and possibly recover damages for willful infringement)

    This trademark registration might be useful to Apple both to deter others from producing similarly configured devices as well as to prevent unauthorized accessory manufacturers using realistic representations of the iPhone in their marketing and sales efforts (as matticus008's indicates in the post above)

    Why didn't Apple register earlier?

    It may be a combination of Apple wanting to submit a strong application, which must include (within 6 months of filing) "specimens" of use (and apparently 170 were submitted) and the fact that time was not of the essence.

    Moreover, that collection of iPhone "specimens" is strong evidence of secondary meaning, i.e. that the public associates the trademark (in this case the design of the device) as specifically being an Apple iPhone. This association of trademark to source is essential for design trademark protection.

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