Feeds

Can BlackBerry stop RedBerry in China?

Market awaits RIM's move

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

If Orange launched a push email service called OrangeBerry in the UK, BlackBerry's maker could shut it down. But China Unicom is launching RedBerry this month, and there may be little Research In Motion (RIM) can do.

"China Unicom's RedBerry brand not only incorporates people's familiarity with the BlackBerry brand name, but it also fully embodies the symbolic meanings of China Unicom's new red logo," the company said. It acknowledged that RIM's BlackBerry is the most successful application of push email technology.

Peter Bullock, a partner with the Hong Kong office of Pinsent Masons and a specialist in intellectual property matters, said the Canadian company's options are limited.

To have an obvious redress under Chinese trademark laws, Bullock explained that RIM would have to show that Chinese consumers are being duped into believing that the RedBerry is associated with RIM's BlackBerry.

"Onerous hurdles to RIM's entry to the Chinese market mean their notoriety is very low at present, which again hinders trademark enforcement," he said.

In the absence of trademark infringement, RIM would need to fall back on the less potent Anti-Unfair Competition Law. "This provides a catch-all to allow a measure of redress in the event of unfair marketing, sales or promotion. Unfortunately, it is a law distinctly lacking in teeth."

It is not known if RIM wants to attempt to block sales of the RedBerry device or simply compete with it on the market. It plans to start selling its BlackBerry service in China through China Mobile (Hong Kong), the world's larges mobile phone operator by the end of May.

David Wolf makes an interesting point on The China Stock Blog about keyboards. The BlackBerry accommodates a full QWERTY keyboard, but with an enormous range of characters in Chinese scripts, pen-based input devices have dominated the Chinese PDA market to date. A QWERTY keyboard can be used for Chinese character input – but that becomes much more difficult when limited to using only one's thumbs.

See: The China Stock Blog

Copyright © 2006, OUT-LAW.com

OUT-LAW.COM is part of international law firm Pinsent Masons.

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
Space Commanders rebel as Elite:Dangerous kills offline mode
Frontier cops an epic kicking in its own forums ahead of December revival
Intel's LAME DUCK mobile chips gobbled by CASH COW
Chipzilla won't have money-losing mobe unit to kick about anymore
First in line to order a Nexus 6? AT&T has a BRICK for you
Black Screen of Death plagues early Google-mobe batch
Ford's B-Max: Fiesta-based runaround that goes THUNK
... when you close the slidey doors, that is ...
Disturbance in the force lets phones detect gestures with Wi-Fi
These are the movement detection devices you're looking for
prev story

Whitepapers

Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Designing and building an open ITOA architecture
Learn about a new IT data taxonomy defined by the four data sources of IT visibility: wire, machine, agent, and synthetic data sets.
How to determine if cloud backup is right for your servers
Two key factors, technical feasibility and TCO economics, that backup and IT operations managers should consider when assessing cloud backup.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?