Apple and Amazon go toe-to-toe over 'Appstore'

7 July 2011

rotten appleApple are very fond of lawsuits. They seem to be embroiled in roughly five thousand of them per-day.

One such legal spat was with Amazon over the term 'Appstore'. Apple thought that Amazon's Appstore, which happens to sell Android apps, was going to "confuse and mislead customers". This resulted in Apple asking the courts to stop Amazon from using the term.

Sadly for Apple, a California court told them to get lost.

The judge said: "First, Apple has not established that its 'App Store' mark is famous, in the sense of being 'prominent' and 'renowned'.

"However, there is also evidence that the term 'app store' is used by other companies as a descriptive term for a place to obtain software applications for mobile devices."

Thanks to add-ons being called apps, it does seem a bit much that Apple should make such a request. Amazon agreed, countersuing Apple saying that the term 'app store' is far too generic to stake a claim in. Of course, Apple counter-countersued Amazon saying that it wasn't generic at all, and "on that basis, denies that the Amazon Appstore for Android service is an 'app store'".

Meanwhile, Apple are also trying to stop the sale of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet in the USA. They clearly don't have enough to be getting on with.

Next Week: Apple sues Granny Smith over the term 'Apple'.

TOPICS:   Technology


  • Alexis
    "The judge said: “First, Apple has not established that its ‘App Store’ mark is famous, in the sense of being ‘prominent’ and ‘renowned’." Presumably the same would apply to 'iTunes', yet I suspect the same judge would get in a tizzy if Amazon renamed it's music downloads service as the 'itunes store".
  • The B.
    @Alexis Well, no, because iTunes is a product, an application, thus the iTunes store is somewhere that sells add ons within/for the iTunes product. The term "app store" is generic, "app" as an abbreviated term for application as been around for an eternity (well, in IT terms anyway) before the Apple "app store" thus any store selling applications or apps via a shop (on or off line) is in fact an "app" store. Perhaps Amazon should call it the "app' store", forcing the nature of the abbreviation into the name itself?
  • Dick
    What Bob said. iTunes is established as an apple product ... just like ipod. App and App Store is not established as meaning apple only. It would be great if they had the power to massively fine large corporations when suing like this. £100m fine (spend it on water, California!) might stop them from being pricks in the future.
  • Fantastic F.
  • ld
    Apple? I'm gonna tell McCartney & Ringo.
  • The B.
    @Id, presumably you're being ironic as that case was settled a while ago after a long old dispute.

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