US Patent Office denies 'iPad Mini' trademark

Mar 31, 2013
A customer looks at an iPad mini at an Apple store in Shanghai on December 7, 2012. The US Patent and Trademark Office has denied Apple's application for a trademark to safeguard its widely popular iPad mini tablet, saying the case to own the phrase was too weak.

The US Patent and Trademark Office has denied Apple's application for a trademark to safeguard its widely popular iPad mini tablet, saying the case to own the phrase was too weak.

Apple, however, has until July 24 to better explain how the mini is different and unique from the larger-sized iPad to counter the rejection seen as largely a formality.

The iPad mini mark "merely describes a feature or characteristic of applicant's good," said the rejection letter dated January 24 but that has only emerged in recent days.

"In this case, both the individual components and the composite result are descriptive of applicant's goods and do not create a unique, incongruous or non-descriptive meaning in relation to the goods being small handheld comprising tablet computers capable of providing Internet access."

It was referring to the components of the device's name: "I," "pad" and "mini."

Unless Apple demonstrates to the USPTO that the "iPad mini" is a distinctive aim, it will be forbidden to "claim exclusive rights to terms or designs that others may need to use to describe or show their goods or services in the marketplace," the letter said.

The USPTO reviewer also criticized Apple for failing to submit a sample with its application and providing product website pages instead.

The application "fails to include a picture or a sufficient textual description of the goods in sufficiently close proximity to the necessary ordering information/a weblink for ordering the goods, and thus, appears to be mere advertising material," the letter said.

Launched in November, the touchscreen device measures just 7.9 inches (20 centimeters) and weighs less than half the original iPad, at 0.68 pounds (308 grams).

Explore further: Sony's PlayStation offline, Microsoft's Xbox restored

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Apple to unveil mini iPad in October: report

Aug 26, 2012

Apple will unveil a new, smaller version of its wildly popular iPad in October after the release of the latest version of its iPhone next month, the All Things Digital website reported Sunday.

Apple iPad arriving in SKorea, 11 more countries

Apr 16, 2012

Apple said Monday it would start marketing its new iPad on Friday in South Korea and 11 other countries, and the hot-selling tablet would be available in more than 50 countries by the end of the month.

Recommended for you

Sony's PlayStation 'gradually coming back'

12 hours ago

Sony was still struggling Saturday to fully restore its online PlayStation system, three days after the Christmas day hack that also hit Microsoft's Xbox, reporting that services were "gradually coming back."

Uber broke Indian financial rules: central bank chief

12 hours ago

India's central bank chief lashed out at Uber, already under fire over the alleged rape of a passenger, saying the US taxi-hailing firm violated the country's financial regulations by using an overseas payment ...

Taxi app Uber defies ban in Spain

Dec 26, 2014

Smartphone car-ride service Uber vowed Friday to keep operating in Spain despite a ban following a lawsuit by taxi drivers and said it would fight the case in court.

Sony film mess reflects gadgets-entertainment gap

Dec 26, 2014

Sony's iconic gadgetry and the star appeal of Hollywood may have appeared to be a perfect match when the electronics giant bought Columbia Pictures in 1989. A quarter century later, it's apparent that Sony ...

User comments : 4

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

BSD
2.5 / 5 (8) Mar 31, 2013
There is the extent of iApple's contribution to IT.....
Product name development. Congratulations iApple, they've gone beyond the letter i preceding everything and added the word 'mini'. I bet that took some resources to achieve that. The English language should not be owned by anyone. 'Windows' is a case in point.
GraemeMcRae
not rated yet Mar 31, 2013
Doesn't Apple already own "iPad"? So then no one else can use "iPad Mini" without infringing on Apple's ownership of "iPad". So what's the problem?
packrat
1 / 5 (2) Apr 01, 2013
Doesn't Apple already own "iPad"? So then no one else can use "iPad Mini" without infringing on Apple's ownership of "iPad". So what's the problem?


Simple, they could sue more companies that way.
VendicarE
2.3 / 5 (3) Apr 01, 2013
Just put apple out of existence. The company is worthless.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.