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‘App store’ still under fire as Apple, Amazon trade punches over the name

Apple and Amazon have a trial date set for later this year as the dispute over the term “app store” continues. Amazon has the Appstore, Apple the App Store. The Cupertino-based company is claiming exclusive rights to use the term “App Store”, as Amazon found out last year. The judge in charge, US Magistrate Judge Elizabeth Laporte, has however ordered the two companies to come to a settlement, saying: “No participant in the settlement conference will be permitted to leave the settlement conference before it is concluded.”

Stephan Lourens
Born 20 years too early. Curses sometimes. Thinks too much. Believes plug-and-play is the best invention ever. If asked what he wants for his birthday he will... More

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Executives from the two companies, with full authority to negotiate and settle the case, will be meeting on 21 March behind closed doors, but after two years of trading punches the mandate set by judge Laporte is no guarantee for a solution. Apple seems to be clutching at straws on this a bit, as last year the presiding judge in the suit versus Amazon said: “I just don’t understand the whole idea that people would misunderstand and blend these two different products and services.”

Amazon claims that the term is a generic one that is used in a general way by all, saying that: “Apple presumably does not contend that its past and current CEOs made false statements regarding those other app stores to thousands of investors in earnings calls.To the contrary, the use of the term ‘app store’ to refer to stores selling apps is commonplace in the industry.”

Apart from this case, Apple still has five more claims against Amazon for copyright infringement and unfair practice. These are the disputes that judge Laporte hopes the two electronic giants will settle in March. Everyone hopes so to, but won’t be holding their breath.