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Apple Sues Amazon.com Over Use of ‘App Store’ Its Trademark

Apple sued Amazon over their use of the “App Store” trademark.

In a complaint filed March 18 in California, Apple accused Amazon.com of trademark infringement and unfair competition and asked for a court order to prevent the company from using the “App Store” name, as well as for unspecified damages.

Amazon.com began using the App Store designation around the beginning of this year, according to the lawsuit. Apple claimed that Amazon has been advertising on its website a program called Angry Birds Rio that will be offered soon. Angry Birds is the name of a popular program in Apple’s App Store.

Amazon.com has used “Amazon Appstore Developer Portal” and “Amazon Appstore” in connection with this service, according to the complaint.

The lawsuit also covers some “unspecified damages” and Amazon is yet to comment on the lawsuit. For those interested in the case, the official title is Apple v. Amazon.com, 11-1327, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California.

Apple said in the court filing that it contacted Amazon three times to demand that it cease using the name and that Amazon hadn’t “provided a substantive response.” “We’ve asked Amazon not to copy the App Store name because it’ll confuse and mislead customers,” said Kristin Huguet, a spokeswoman for Apple.

Apple applied to register App Store as a trademark in the U.S., and the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office approved the application, Apple said in the lawsuit. Apple also has had the “Mac App Store” term since October 2010, with the store launching January 6, 2011.

Microsoft has opposed the registration and the matter will be the subject of proceedings before a trademark appeal board, Apple said in the court filing.


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