Apple CEO Steve Jobs introduces Apple's new iCloud storage system and the next versions of Apple's iOS and Mac OSX.
An Arizona voice over IP provider (VOIP) claims Apple stole the name "iCloud" and seeks compensation from the Cupertino, Calif., company.
The plaintiff, iCloud Communications, was formed in 2005, and is now suing Apple for trademark infringement, according to the complaint filed in U.S. District Court in Arizona. The complaint also had a section called "Apple's Pattern of Willful Trademark Infringement," which starts off with some choice words:
Although Apple aggressively protects its trademark rights, Apple has a long and well known history of knowingly and willfully treading on the trademark rights of others—a history which began as early as the 1970s when Apple was first sued for trademark infringement by the Beatles record label, Apple Corp. Although the case was settled on the condition that Apple not enter into the music business, Apple entered into the music business in the 1990s and was sued again.
The complaint mentions that Apple was also sued by Cisco Systems over the name iPhone and Fujitsu Frontech North America over iPad. Last month, Apple applied for a trademark on the name iCloud at the Trade Marks and Designs Registration Office of the European Union.
It's unknown if Apple really did know about iCloud Communications, but after such a long list of lawsuits against Apple's alleged pilfering of names, it does paint Apple as a tech giant that allegedly tramples the copyrights and trademarks of other companies. We don't know if iCloud Communications wants anything more than a quick settlement in this lawsuit, but it will be interesting to see how the case plays out.