Feeds

Mexico to Apple: You WILL NOT use the name 'iPhone' here

We don' need no stinkin' badge lawsuits

The essential guide to IT transformation

Apple has lost the right to use the word "iPhone" in Mexico after its trademark lawsuit against Mexican telco iFone backfired.

Judges sitting in Mexico's 18th District Appellate Court have ruled that iFone is the only company allowed to use the "iPhone" or "iFone" brands in the North American country.

The decision marks the end of a three-year trademark battle launched by Apple in 2009. It was an unwise move. iFone registered its trademark in 2003, Apple registered iPhone in 2007. Unable to argue that iFone was too similar to iPhone, Apple lost its lawsuit. iFone then countersued and won. Apple appealed last week and was rebuffed by the court, according to newspaper El Universal.

As a result Apple lost the right to trade using the iPhone brand, and the ruling could be applied retroactively: iFone may be able to claim a cut of the profits Apple has made using the iPhone name in Mexico since it launched five years ago.

iFone's lawyer Eduardo Gallástegui told the Mexican newspaper that the next stage of the legal process will involve cheques from Apple. Here's a rough translation:

All that remains is processing claims for invasion of brand. Additionally, they face a sanction of up to 20,000 days at minimum wage rate, and iFone shall be entitled to claim compensation for damage caused by the invasion of their brand. These damages may not be less than 40 per cent of the sales of iPhone services in Mexico, as provided by law.

Presumably Apple is going to have to reach deep into itds record-breaking profits to smooth this one over. And after this ruling, it will have few cards to play when brokering a deal with iFone to licence the trademark in future. It's not great timing, with the iPhone 5 due to arrive in Mexico later today.

Coming within a week of Apple's humiliating public apology in UK over a patent lawsuit that it lost, Apple's habit of launching aggressive lawsuits is starting to bite it on the bum. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
GCHQ protesters stick it to British spooks ... by drinking urine
Activists told NOT to snap pics of staff at the concrete doughnut
Britain's housing crisis: What are we going to do about it?
Rent control: Better than bombs at destroying housing
Top beak: UK privacy law may be reconsidered because of social media
Rise of Twitter etc creates 'enormous challenges'
Redmond resists order to hand over overseas email
Court wanted peek as related to US investigation
What do you mean, I have to POST a PHYSICAL CHEQUE to get my gun licence?
Stop bitching about firearms fees - we need computerisation
Ex US cybersecurity czar guilty in child sex abuse website case
Health and Human Services IT security chief headed online to share vile images
NZ Justice Minister scalped as hacker leaks emails
Grab your popcorn: Subterfuge and slur disrupts election run up
We need less U.S. in our WWW – Euro digital chief Steelie Neelie
EC moves to shift status quo at Internet Governance Forum
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
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?