Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Software Apple

Apple and Amazon End Lawsuit Over the Term 'App Store' 79

Posted by Soulskill
from the our-world-just-got-a-bit-less-silly dept.
An anonymous reader writes "After months of back and forth legal filings, Amazon and Apple have finally ended their ongoing dispute centering on Amazon's use of the term 'App Store.' As part of the agreement, Apple agreed to drop the suit and Amazon promised not to counter-sue Apple in the future. Apple spokeswoman Kristin Huguet said that 'we no longer see a need to pursue our case. With more than 900,000 apps and 50 billion downloads, customers know where they can purchase their favorite apps.' Apple initially sued Amazon back in March of 2011 alleging that the online retailer's use of the phrase 'App Store' in its mobile software developer program constituted trademark infringement. Apple expressed that allowing Amazon to continue to use the phrase 'App Store' would ultimately confuse consumers who associate the phrase with Apple's app store for iOS apps."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Apple and Amazon End Lawsuit Over the Term 'App Store'

Comments Filter:
  • by RazzleFrog (537054) on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @04:59PM (#44230515)

    I am sure that is the reason they dropped it and not because they were throwing dollars at lawyers for a case they couldn't possibly win. They found a way to back out gracefully.

    • by click2005 (921437) *

      Without admitting they were wrong (as usual).

      • by ackthpt (218170)

        Without admitting they were wrong (as usual).

        And quite possibly because some patent troll has been warming up in the wings to go after them both.

    • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Apple are fucking stupid. They go around suing every other large company around alienating themselves and making a lot of enemies when they could be forming valuable partnerships instead.
      • by Scarletdown (886459) on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @05:48PM (#44231089) Journal

        Apple are fucking stupid. They go around suing every other large company around alienating themselves and making a lot of enemies when they could be forming valuable partnerships instead.

        That makes far too much sense. And to top it off, where such a philosophy would have been normal in the early days of the personal computer industry, cooperation between businesses to where everyone can succeed does not align with the modern douchebag corporate philosophy, where it is not enough for a company to be a success, but all competitors must ultimately fail. And if that is not possible, scorch the land.

        • by tlhIngan (30335)

          That makes far too much sense. And to top it off, where such a philosophy would have been normal in the early days of the personal computer industry, cooperation between businesses to where everyone can succeed does not align with the modern douchebag corporate philosophy, where it is not enough for a company to be a success, but all competitors must ultimately fail. And if that is not possible, scorch the land.

          But how much cooperation is "too much"?

          Would the eBook publishers "cooperating" to make eBooks mo

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by loufoque (1400831)

      They never wanted to win, just delay.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by icebike (68054)

      I am sure that is the reason they dropped it and not because they were throwing dollars at lawyers for a case they couldn't possibly win. They found a way to back out gracefully.

      Or could it be that over the intervening time, Apple figured out that their customers are not as stupid as Apple thought they were, and none of them were found trying to download Amazon apps to their walled-garden phones?

      Apple expressed that allowing Amazon to continue to use the phrase 'App Store' would ultimately confuse consumers

      • I am sure that is the reason they dropped it and not because they were throwing dollars at lawyers for a case they couldn't possibly win. They found a way to back out gracefully.

        Or could it be that over the intervening time, Apple figured out that their customers are not as stupid as Apple thought they were, and none of them were found trying to download Amazon apps to their walled-garden phones?

        Or maybe Apple saw that even Android users aren't stupid enough to shop at the fake App Store. Not to mention that most developers too realized Amazon was ripping them off.

    • I don't think lawyers on staff get paid extra for creating cases.

      Though their top lawyer does get paid quite a bit already.

      http://www.reuters.com/finance/stocks/officerProfile?symbol=AAPL.O&officerId=1396053 [reuters.com]

      Almost $70M, most probably in stock options.

    • by mjwx (966435)

      I am sure that is the reason they dropped it and not because they were throwing dollars at lawyers for a case they couldn't possibly win. They found a way to back out gracefully.

      The thing is, Apple can afford to keep throwing lawyers that cost thousands of dollars per hour at cases they have no hope of winning.

      More likely they found out they would be judged against very, very soon and would rather the case ended ambiguously as opposed to having a precedent set. This way they can keep using the FUD and threats of a law suit.

  • Hang on... (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward

    With more than 900,000 apps and 50 billion downloads, customers know where they can purchase their favorite apps

    Google Play?? Android has over 900,000 apps and 50 billion downloads.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Google_Play [wikipedia.org]

  • by whoever57 (658626) on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @05:02PM (#44230567) Journal
    the lawyers!
    • by ackthpt (218170)

      the lawyers!

      Thank goodness we have someone evil enough to make the lawyers suffer, if even just a tiny bit, for their part in this - the IRS

  • patents (Score:5, Interesting)

    by irving47 (73147) on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @05:03PM (#44230581) Homepage

    I bet a shiny quarter that somewhere in the agreement, Apple gets a break on the 1-click purchase license that Amazon got the patent on way back when. Apple was among the first, if not the first, to license that farce for their store online.

    • Bet they didnt. What Apple got was that hopefully the DOJ will not consider this lawsuit a pattern of behavior when considering their culpability in the eBook price fixing investigation.
      • by icebike (68054)

        Bet they didnt. What Apple got was that hopefully the DOJ will not consider this lawsuit a pattern of behavior when considering their culpability in the eBook price fixing investigation.

        That ship has sailed, and the brunt of that eBook pricing scandal will hit any day now.
        Don't expect Apple to get out of that one so easily, because the last party to settle in this type of case pays something like 90% of the damages.

      • What? Like the DOJ won't prosecute Apple for that?

        Um, already happened.

        Decision is in the judge's hands, not the DOJ's.

        • Not saying they are going to walk away from it. More like putting one's effects in order before sentencing. It cant hurt to put this to bed before the judge rules, just like it cant help to have a merit-less lawsuit against the Amazon in play when the judge rules. Hey maybe Im wrong, probably am, but the timing seems less than random. But either way I doubt they got any concession from Amazon whatsoever, and certainly no reduction in licensing fees.
      • Bet they didnt. What Apple got was that hopefully the DOJ will not consider this lawsuit a pattern of behavior when considering their culpability in the eBook price fixing investigation.

        Wow, you make it sound like the DOJ and Amazon are colluding. You may be on to something.

    • by rahvin112 (446269)

      I'll bet they didn't. The press release mentions Amazon agreed not to counter sue, That's usually code for we are losing the case and we talked the other side into not going after legal fees if we drop the case right now.

      The case was silly, Amazon would have likely counter sued and at a minimum won legal fees and might have convinced the judge the case was so silly that punitive damages are viable. That could cost quite a bit of money so they talked Amazon into letting them off the hook if they drop it and

  • Of course (Score:4, Informative)

    by dabadab (126782) on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @05:03PM (#44230591)

    Yes, I can totally see, how a misguided Apple user would download stuff from Amazon to his iPhone instead of using Apple's app store - well, except for the minor problem
    , that their phones do not allow them to do it.

    • by Anonymous Coward
      Clearly you overestimate the median intelligence of the Apple user. Apple had to weigh the cost of a lawsuit, against the cost of fielding support calls from iPhone/iPad users upset that they couldn't figure out how to download apps from Amazon's App Store.
  • Now can we consumers sue BOTH of them for material misrepresentation? They both forgot the C in "crap store"

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Do tax payers get reimbursed now for the money wasted legally catering to this nonsense?

  • They should just trademark the letters of the alphabet, and therefore all combinations of those letter.

    Iit would completely eliminate all confusion. Who owns this name? Well if it is made of letters, then Apple. Easy.

    • by oodaloop (1229816)
      Presumably, then, the artist formerly known as Prince would be unaffected in this scenario.
      • The artist formerly known as prince will not be affected, however "The artist formerly known as prince" will definitely be affected.
    • by jimshatt (1002452)
      Just the iAlphabet: iA, iB, iC, iD, iEtc...
    • Reminds me of Steven Wright: Why is the alphabet in that order? Is it because of that song? The guy who wrote that song wrote everything.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    >customers know where they can purchase their favorite apps

    Yes, at the Google Play Store, but I generally purchase an app before it's my favorite app, since it can't be a favorite if I don't have it.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Amazon failed as far as I'm concerned. This was a ridiculously stupid lawsuit and Amazon really should counter sue to make up legal costs.

  • by bmo (77928) on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @06:50PM (#44231783)

    "App" is a generic self-descriptive term meaning application going back to the 70s. "Store" is a generic term going back centuries. The two together are also generic and self-descriptive.

    You can't have a self-descriptive genericism as a trademark and get away with it if someone has the balls to try to take it away from you.

    Microsoft almost lost their trademark to Windows because of this (and handed a pile of money to Linspire to shut up about it).

    --
    BMO

    • Windows isn't really a generic self-descriptive term for an operating system, so I don't think a Windows trademark dispute has any bearing on this issue.

      I don't know about the 70s but I do know killer app was a term whose peak popularity predated the iPhone.

      • by Pfhorrest (545131)

        At the time in question, Windows was not an operating system. It was a windowing system that ran on their operating system, which contrary to popular usage was not just called "DOS" because that's also a generic descriptor of any disk operating system -- it was specifically MS-DOS, like Apple's app stores are specifically the iOS App Store and the Mac App Store.

        So Windows was software which gave your computer windows, in the same way that The App Store (whichever one) is a store where you buy apps. Both equ

    • "App" is a generic self-descriptive term meaning application going back to the 70s. "Store" is a generic term going back centuries. The two together are also generic and self-descriptive.

      Quite obviously so - that's why thousands have used the combination before Apple. It's just that nobody can find an example.

  • by Krishnoid (984597) * on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @06:55PM (#44231839) Journal

    With more than 900,000 apps and 50 billion downloads, customers know where they can purchase their favorite apps.

    Amazon?

  • by manu0601 (2221348) on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @09:50PM (#44233415)
    Does that nullify the "App store" trade mark? Is any random project allowed to use it now?
  • > 'App Store'

    I haven't heard anything this idiotic since Microsoft was allowed to trademark "Windows" to cover their particular version of already well and long-established concept of a computerized windowing system.

  • Probably most of the VPs saw the bill... the only people pushing the case to eternity were the lawyers....

The way to make a small fortune in the commodities market is to start with a large fortune.

Working...