Apple and Amazon End ‘App Store’ Trademark Dispute

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Posted 3 years ago

apple_logo_dec07It has been an on-going battle that has played out in the courts for more than two years, but finally, the dispute between Apple and Amazon is over, after the former dropped its lawsuit over the latter’s use of the term “app store.”

Back in March 2011, when Amazon set up its own marketplace for Android devices called the “Amazon appstore,” Apple moved quickly, and sought to block the e-commerce giant from using the name, alleging that the trademarked name was being used improperly. Naturally, Amazon refuted these claims, and was backed by a number of allies, including HTC and Microsoft, in arguing that “app store” was a generic term that was widely used.

Apple first had a request for an injunction turned down in July 2011, and then another claim of false advertising against Amazon was thrown out in January of this year (2013) by the same judge – US District Judge Phyllis Hamilton. Cupertino, though, had refused to give up, until yesterday, when it was announced that the lawsuit had finally been dropped.

“We no longer see a need to pursue our case,” Apple’s Kristin Huguet said in a statement to Reuters. “With more than 900,000 apps and 50 billion downloads, customers know where they can purchase their favorite apps.”

Amazon’s lawyer, Martin Glick, saw things rather differently: “This was a decision by Apple to unilaterally abandon the case, and leave Amazon free to use ‘appstore,'” he told Reuters.

“We’re gratified that the court has conclusively dismissed this case,” Amazon spokeswoman Mary Osako said in a statement. “We look forward to continuing our focus on delivering the best possible appstore experience to customers and developers.”

This case always looked like a battle that Apple was not going to win, and it was surprising that the company pursued it as long it did. But, at least now that it’s all over, we can all go about safely calling an app store exactly what it is – an app store.

-Anthony Carter

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