Amazon Wins Battle Over Apple In “Appstore” Trademark Infringement

As you will probably know Amazon has a marketplace on their site where you can buy applications, its called the “Appstore”. But wait, didn’t someone else do that? Yes thats right, Apple has something almost identical called the “App Store”. Its no big deal, they only got their 15 billionth download from that store a few days back. Apple are not happy about the similarity between names and so tried to have Amazon drop their name in court, Apple lost.

Apple filed an injunction to prevent Amazon from trading under their “Appstore” name, however the request has been denied. Lawsuits between big companies have been absolutely flying round of late, not only do you also have Apple trying to sue Samsung over a patent infringement, you also have Apple on the receiving end of a lawsuit from Nokia, where they just had to pay out around $1 billion.

According to Electric Pig, a US federal judge denied Apple’s plea to have Amazon banned from using the Appstore trademark. It was decided that “Apple has not established that its ‘App Store‘ mark is famous, in the sense of being prominent and renowned.” Would go agree with this? It is famous but is that equally because of Amazon’s store also? Although Apple has had to compete with a similar rival it has not greatly affected them as they are still selling phenomenology well.

It has been reported by Mac Observer that Apple as claimed that Amazon’s use of the term “Appstore” tarnished their trademark. Judge Phyllis J. Hamilton did however say that the ruling was not a decision on the case itself, but on the request by Apple for a preliminary injunction. So in other words, Apple will not be able to stop Amazon from trading with the “Appstore” term, but may be able to in future.

What must really boil Apple’s blood is the fact that Amazon use the name to sell their biggest competitors apps. Amazon sell a huge selection of Android apps, all under what could be interpreted as Apple’s trademark. There is no denying that the only thing that makes the words different is the space, but the fact that it is the “Amazon Appstore” and not just “App Store” is probably what is keeping the name alive.

The judge claimed that the term “App Store” was purely generic and for that reason an injunction could not be granted; however both Apple and Amazon were invited to introduce new evidence and testimonies. Will Apple succeed in taking Amazon’s “Appstore” name away? What kind of an impact will it have on both companies if they do? Leave us your thoughts in the comments.