Apple loses trademark case to the Philippines’ My|phone

Abs-CbnNews reports that Apple has lost its trademark case against Philippine smartphone maker My|phone.

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Solid Group, the company behind My|phone, said that the Philippine Intellectual Property Office (IPO) dismissed the case filed by Apple against My|phone.

Apple claimed that Solid Broadband’s application for the trademark “my|phone” was “confusingly similar” to its iPhone and “likely to deceive or cause confusion.”

IPO director Nathaniel Arevalo said, “This is a case of a giant trying to claim more territory than what it is entitled to, to the great prejudice of a local “Pinoy Phone” merchant who has managed to obtain a significant foothold in the mobile phone market through the marketing and sale of innovative products under a very distinctive trademark.”

Solid Broadband launched my|phone, the first locally branded mobile phones in the Philippines in 2007. From three mobile phone products in 2007, it now markets and sells over 40 models under my|phone.

Arevalo added that there is “absolutely no confusing similarity between my|phone trademark (of Solid) and the iPhone trademark (of Apple).”

“While the marks are similar with respect to the word (‘phone’), it is not sufficient to conclude that confusion among the consumers is likely to occur. ‘Phone’ is a generic term for products mobile phones.”

Speaking about the likelihood of consumers getting confused between My|phone and iPhone, he said, “The buying public should be credited with a modicum of intelligence and discernment in purchasing articles, such as gadgets and mobile phones… The fame and popularity of iPhone in fact makes it improbable for one to confuse My|phone product as an iPhone.”

Apple can still appeal the IPO’s decision within 30 days after receipt of a copy of the decision.

Do you think the “My|phone” trademark can be confused as Apple’s “iPhone?” Share your opinion through a comment on our Phones LTD Facebook page.

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