Brazilian 'iPhone' Trademark Lawsuit Ends With Apple and IGB 'Close To Settlement'
According to Brazil’s largest daily, Folha de São Paulo, both companies have agreed to end the lawsuit over iPhone and come to some sort of “pacific agreement,” the paper reported on Saturday. Apple has paid millions for its exclusive use of the word iPhone in the past and will likely pay IGB as well.IGB had applied for the "iPhone" trademarke in Brazil in 2000, years before Apple's phone was launched, and was granted the trademark in 2008.
Apple challenged the trademark on the basis that IGB had failed to use the trademark until it was close to expiration, but the Brazilian Industrial Property Institute ruled in IGB's favor after it launched a low-cost Android smartphone using the iPhone brand late last year. Apple took the matter to court, but has now withdrawn the legal action after IGB suggested that it was open to selling the trademark.
Apple's current use of the "iPhone" name in Brazil is not currently being hampered while the dispute plays out, with the company being allowed to continue selling the iPhone under its popular name and Apple retaining control over the iPhone name for other categories of use such as software.
Apple is expected to make a cash settlement for exclusive rights over the name in Brazil. It previously settled a dispute over the iPad trademark in China for $60 million, but there is no word yet on a settlement amount for the Brazilian case.