Saturday28 January 2023

Proview Files a Strategic Lawsuit Against Apple in California

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73Someone over at Proview in China has been doing some thinking and is now fighting Apple in a very interesting manner. Unless you have been living under a rock you are probably aware that Pro View and Apple are in a trademark battle over the iPad name in China. The back story is a little long, but if you are interested in the whole thing you can read it here, here, and here. For the rest of you it is important to know that Apple used a special group to hide their identity from Proview during the negotiations for the iPad trademark. The company’s name was IP Application Development Limited.

According to Proview, Apple’s lawyers formed an entity in order to conceal their identity from Proview. This is not unusual and is done by companies all the time (even though it is slightly fraudulent… it is common practice) Where things differ is that in the original dealings IP Application Development Limited claimed they wanted the trademark as it represented part of their name IPAD(L).Now this level of falsehood is very unusual and could be used to show a conspiracy to defraud Proview in acquiring the iPad trademark. Because of this Proview has filed a lawsuit against Apple and IP Application Development Limited in California.

The experts right now are split in if this will work and some are even saying that Apple can bow out by saying they were not who dealt with Proview. This last part has a danger hidden in it. If Apple claims that they cannot be held accountable for this because they were not involved in the transaction then Proview and claim the same thing in China. To put it bluntly how can Apple sue Proview for breach of a transaction they were not involved in?

This puts Apple in a very awkward position; on the one hand saying they were not involved in the original transaction gets them out of the lawsuit that Proview has filed, but then possibly leaves them open in China. Of course the Chinese courts could just ignore what happens in the US Courts, but we have a feeling that a move by Apple to argue they do not have to defend against something they were not truly involved in would have an impact. Although not certain, it could end up preventing them from continuing suits against Proview as they did not buy the rights from Proview, but from IP Application Development Limited (it is funny to think of Apple having to sue themselves…).

If Proview wins in California that could also have an impact on dealings in China as it would show that Apple intended to defraud Proview in the first place.

Like we said the move by Proview is a very smart one, we will continue to keep an eye on things to see how they play out in the US and in China.

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Last modified on Friday, 24 February 2012 19:32

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