The iPhone Already Exists – and It Belongs to Cisco and Linksys, Not the Apple Cell Phone!
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Update: Cisco Sues Apple over iPhone Trademark

Update: Apple Announces the iPhone – the Apple Cell Phone Comes to Market – Sort Of


The long-awaited announcement by Apple of an iPhone – an Apple cell phone – is believed by many to be due in just a few short weeks. However news that Cisco has owned the iPhone brand for years has the market abuzz and agog. Does this mean a legal battle brewing between giants Cisco and Apple, or will Apple – if it is even about to announce a phone – concede their beloved i+noun nomenclature to Cisco? Or will Cisco sell or license the name to Apple? Regardless of the outcome, emotions run surprisingly high over such a seemingly small thing as a name and even the letter “i”.

The Cisco iPhone, which runs on the Cisco-owned Linksys technology, is a VoIP phone. It was announced just this week, but Cisco registered the iPhone trademark more than six years ago, sometime in the year 2000.

In fact, Cisco’s Linksys division has a full line of iPhone products, including handsets and VoIP boxes and routers.

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But the real issue isn’t the devices, it’s all in the name. Pundits, market forecasters and Apple devotees alike have all been referring to the mythical Apple “iPhone” for years. And now that it seems on the brink of release, some are clearly upset about what they see as a bizarre branding switcheroo.

While ABC quotes a branding expert as saying that the whole i-thing thing is “generic and outdated”, many others disagree. ABC news claims that some are even “outraged.”

“All this does is make Cisco’s new phone look like a cheap Apple imitation product, one that hasn’t even been released! It’s incredible, people are copying Apple’s products before they’ve even been announced!” raged one Apple fan.

 

“So, is this the iPhone…?! God. I feel so cheated,” wrote another, and “Are they really going to call it the iPhone? After all of this hype, I think it’s a bit tacky for any other company than Apple to use the name…,” wrote yet a third.

One disillusioned observer summed up: “I’m amazed Apple didn’t already trademark ‘iPhone’, or maybe they did and litigation is in the air…….”

Indeed, many trademark experts have already noted that given the constant buzz about the apocryphal Apple iPhone, there already exists great brand confusion, and the Linksys iPhone will surely confuse people looking to buy an Apple phone. On the other hand, Linksys (now Cisco) has owned the iPhone trademark for 6 years.

This lawsuit has been brought to you by the letter I.

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5 thoughts on “The iPhone Already Exists – and It Belongs to Cisco and Linksys, Not the Apple Cell Phone!
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  1. Hey, that was interesting,

    iPhone is the best once you have taist it you cannot live withought it

    Thanks

  2. The iPublic’s swooning over iApple’s overly-hyped iProducts is wearing thin. There are many alternatives to iApple’s foistings on the market, but we iConsumers have our i’s closed to technical goodness and follow iFashion instead.
    iT’s so much easier to just go with the best-iMarketed product than to devote much actual thought to them.
    Needless to say, iDon’t have an iPod, and prefer more open products, with better sound quality to boot!

    iRonan iHyde

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