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Will Apple rename iCloud and delay iPhone 5 release after iCloud infringement case?

Apple has unveiled the company's cloud-based service iCloud along with Mac OS X Lion and iOS 5 at WWDC 2011 for several days. But the company did not released its next generation iPhone, the iPhone 5 which was considered as a miscarriage of Apple. It frustrated Apple fans even with iCloud, Mac OS X Lion and iOS 5.

As the rumors that Apple lost the best opportunity to regain the outstanding of No.1 mobile operating system overtaking by Google Android, are still rising, Apple was stricken by an infringement case which claimed the company allegedly infringed on iCloud trademark.

The lawsuit has been filed in U.S. District Court of Arizona by an Arizona-based computer communications company the iCloud Communications and demanded Apple to stop using the iCloud name and a unspecified monetary compensation.

If Apple lost the iCloud case, the company have to pay compensation and stop use the name of iCloud which indicated that Apple has to spend a certain time to revise its iCloud trademark and related services. It would lead Apple to put off the release of iPhone 5.

Meanwhile, Apple is slated to launch upgraded versions of its ultra-thin MacBook Airs which were reported to be equipped with Intel's Sandy Bridge chip architecture with laptops going into production this June. This move also could put off the release of iPhone 5.

But the ComputerWorld reported that a legal expert Brad Sala expected Apple would likely settle the case for cash saying "if a small company is looking for a reasonable settlement, Apple usually settles when they don't have a strong case." This means that Apple probably could handle the case with money.

The iCloud Communications filed the lawsuit which alleged that Apple's online storage service iCloud infringed the company's name saying Apple began using marks identical or confusingly similar to theiCloud Marks to promote its new cloud computing telecommunications and dataservices:

"The goods and services with which Apple intends to use the 'iCloud' mark are identical to or closely related to the goods and services that have been offered by iCloud Communications under the iCloud Marks since its formation in 2005. However, due to the worldwide media coverage given to and generated by Apple's announcement of its 'iCloud' services and the ensuing saturation advertising campaign pursued by Apple, the media and the general public have quickly come to associate the mark 'iCloud' with Apple, rather than iCloud Communications."

The iCloud Communications said Apple has a long and well known history of knowingly and willfully treading on the trademark rights of others:

"The history began as early as the 1970s when Apple was first sued fortrademark infringement by the Beatles record label, Apple Corp. The case was settled on the condition that Apple not enter into the music business, but Apple entered into the music business in the 1990s and was sued again.

Apple has been sued for its use of various marksemploying the "i" prefix in connection with various wireless technology goods andservices in more recent times.

The Apple was sued another time for trademark infringement due to its adoptionof the name "Mighty Mouse" for computer devices despite Terrytoon's famous trademark for the cartoon character of the same name. "

The Arizona-based company listed many other cases of Apple willfully infringing others' trade marks in its file "iCloud Complaint".

Apple's iCloud which automatically and wirelessly store users' content and automatically and wirelessly push it to all Apple devices, is expected to help iPhone 5 beat Google Android and Google's cloud-based Music Beta.

The iCloud supports up to 10 devices for free, including the former MobileMe (services-Contacts, Calendar and Mail), the App Store and iBookstore, iCloud Backup, iCloud Storage, Photo Stream, iTunes.

The iCloud includes 5GB of free cloud storage for Mail, Document Storage and Backup. Purchased music, apps, books and Photo Stream do not count against the storage limit. iTunes Match will be available for $24.99 per year.
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Publication:International Business Times - US ed.
Date:Jun 13, 2011
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