According to a report on BloombergBusiness today, Apple is being sued by an Irish software development studio for how it is using the term “iWatch” in advertisements.
Despite the fact that the device is called the Apple Watch, rather than the iWatch, when you type “iWatch” into Google’s search engine, the first thing you’ll usually see is an advertisement for the Apple Watch. This is because Apple pays to advertise with Google in order to attract potential customers who search for the wrong name (albeit a name that was widely used prior to the announcement that Apple’s wearable would be called the Apple Watch).
This, however, has angered the small Dublin-based firm, Probendi, which is the actual owner of the iWatch trademark in Europe. Probendi has now filed a procedure with a court in Milan in protest at Apple’s use of the term to direct customers to Apple’s own Apple Watch website.
Probendi’s lawyer says that he has not heard from Apple on the matter, and Google has said that it is not responsible for links.
According to an audit commissioned by Probendi, the iWatch trademark is valued at €87 million, or $97 million. Apple previously paid out $60 million to settle a trademark dispute in China over the rights to use the iPad name.
The case will be heard on November 11.