Trademark Law

iPad Name Also Claimed by Fujitsu and Bra Maker

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Fujitsu is consulting its lawyers about its legal rights to the iPad name.

The Tokyo technology company applied in 2003 for a trademark on its iPad, a handheld device that helps store clerks verify prices and check real-time inventory, the New York Times reports. The Times describes the device this way: “It’s sleek. It’s mobile. It has a touchscreen.”

Apple unveiled its iPad tablet computer yesterday, a device positioned between a laptop and a smartphone, the New York Times reported in its coverage of the 1½ pound touchscreen device.

Other companies use the iPad name as well, according to the Times and the Financial Times. A Canadian lingerie company has the right to use the name for its padded bras, and Siemens uses it for engines and motors.

Apple is seeking more time to oppose Fujitsu’s trademark application, according to the Times and Bloomberg. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office shows Fujitsu’s application was abandoned in early 2009, but the company revived it in June, the Times says. Apple used a registered agent to seek an international trademark for the iPad the following month.

Bloomberg interviewed Fujitsu lawyer Edward Pennington of Hanify & King in Washington, who said his client hadn’t had any direct communications with Apple. “They probably need to talk to us,” he said.

The Wall Street Journal Law Blog noted the legal dispute. It titled its story, “Does Apple’s iPad Have an iP iProblem?”

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