Judge rejects part of Apple App Store suit vs Amazon

SAN FRANCISCO Wed Jan 2, 2013 11:27pm IST

Customers leave the Apple store after buying iPad minis in London November 2, 2012. REUTERS/Suzanne Plunkett/Files

Customers leave the Apple store after buying iPad minis in London November 2, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Suzanne Plunkett/Files

Related Topics

Stocks

   

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - A U.S. judge on Wednesday rejected part of Apple Inc's (AAPL.O) lawsuit against Amazon.com Inc's (AMZN.O) use of the term App Store, ruling Apple cannot bring a false advertising claim against the online retailer.

U.S. District Judge Phyllis Hamilton in Oakland, California, granted Amazon's motion for partial summary judgment, which only challenged Apple's false advertising allegations. Apple leveled other claims against Amazon, including trademark infringement.

An Apple spokeswoman declined to comment, and an Amazon representative could not be reached immediately.

Amazon has stepped up competition against Apple in recent years, launching its cheaper Kindle tablet computer to go after the dominant iPad and trying to lure mobile application developers to its Kindle platform.

One of the first public clashes in their tussle was Apple's 2011 lawsuit.

Apple accused Amazon of misusing what it calls its APP STORE to solicit developers for a mobile software download service. However, Amazon said its so-called Appstore has become so generic that its use could not constitute false advertising.

In a legal filing last year, Amazon added that even Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook and his predecessor, Steve Jobs, used the term to discuss rivals. Cook commented on "the number of app stores out there" and Jobs referred to the "four app stores on Android."

In her ruling on Wednesday, Hamilton wrote that the mere use of "Appstore" by Amazon cannot be taken as a representation that its service is the same as Apple's.

"Apple has failed to establish that Amazon made any false statement (express or implied) of fact that actually deceived or had the tendency to deceive a substantial segment of its audience," Hamilton wrote.

A trial on Apple's remaining claims is scheduled for August.

The case is Apple Inc v. Amazon.com Inc et al, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California, No. 11-01327. (Additional reporting by Alistair Barr in San Francisco; Editing by Tim Dobbyn and Jeffrey Benkoe)

FILED UNDER:
  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

Microsoft in China

Tech Showcase

Internet Governance

Internet Governance

At China online coming-out party, Beijing spells out Internet control ambition  Full Article 

Tech Monopoly

Tech Monopoly

EU digital tsar warns monopolists; Google foes play down call for break-up  Full Article 

Tencent-HBO Deal

Tencent-HBO Deal

China's Tencent partners with HBO for TV show streaming  Full Article 

Samsung Investment

Samsung Investment

Samsung Electronics wins $3 billion Vietnam project licence  Full Article 

Microsoft sues IRS

Microsoft sues IRS

Microsoft sues IRS for details of probe on internal transactions  Full Article 

Cold Hard Facts

Cold Hard Facts

Underwater robot measures Antarctic sea ice  Full Article 

Net Neutrality

Net Neutrality

Digital tsar urges Europe not to weaken net neutrality rules  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage