September 16, 2016
Swatch has successfully opposed Apple’s application for the trademark iWatch in the UK.
Swatch said that on account of their reputation as a quality Swiss watch maker that the name “iWatch” was too similar to their own trademarks of “iSwatch” and “Swatch” and that Apple’s use of that name would likely cause confusion among the public.
Apple’s argument was that it already has a “reputation of a family of 23 marks with the prefix ‘i’”, which would mean that the public would associate “iWatch” with Apple and therefore not create any confusion between the two companies.
If Apple’s had been successful in their argument that the pre-fix ‘i’ followed by the name of a device signifies an Apple product, it would have opened the door to Apple having a wide monopoly in the prefix. In this case the similarity between Swatch and Watch also swung the decision in Swatch’s favour. Even do expect Apple to continue to try and carve a monopoly in ‘i’ as it continues its dominance in consumer electronics.
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