Judge Rules Apple Has Right to Use 'iPhone' Name in Brazil
Apple has won the right to use the 'iPhone' name in Brazil following a legal battle with IGB Electronica, reports CNET. Judge Eduardo de Brito Fernandes ruled against IGB who had filed a trademark for the name 'Gradiente iphone' in 2000 but wasn't granted the trademark until 2008.
In his ruling, Fernandes called Apple's iPhone "world renowned," the AFP reported Wednesday. The judge said that giving the Gradiente phone exclusive rights to the name wouldn't be fair to Apple since "all the (Apple) product's renown and client following have been built on its performance and excellence as a product." The judge also said that Gradiente's name just used a combination of "internet" and "phone" as a way to brand a mobile phone with Internet access, BNAmericas said. Apple already had an extensive "i" product line registered in several countries, according to the judge.
Notably, IGB released its Gradient iphone last December, just one month before its trademark was set to expire. Brazil's Institute of Industry Property sided with IGB saying that Apple had no right to use the name in the country. That decision was appealed and as a result of this ruling the two companies must share the name. IGB says it will appeal the decision.