Some days, watching the tech news cycle is like watching a soap opera. The Web is abuzz today with news that, on Friday, Apple
On the surface, the suit seems loony. Don't we all use "app" and "app store" as generic terms? With each, we're describing broad concepts. Sure, iPhones have apps -- but so does every other smartphone out there. And where do we get these apps? App stores, of course. Even Steve Jobs says so. Microsoft
But don't be too quick to burn your mock turtleneck in protest. Amazon.com may have opened this particular can of worms when it patented "one-click checkout" more than a decade ago. Apple has since licensed the term for use in its own digital stores.
Now their roles are reversed. Apple contacted Amazon three times, demanding that the retailer stop using "app store" in describing its efforts to sell mobile software, Bloomberg reports. Apparently, the folks at Cupertino received no "substantive" response.
As a result, Apple alleges that Amazon.com unlawfully recruited software developers by trading on the "app store" moniker. Really? As if coders didn't already know that Google
Yet the broader point remains. If Amazon can patent an ordering system and naming scheme, why can't Apple patent an app store? Pot, meet kettle.
Do you agree? Disagree? Let us know what you think about Apple's lawsuit, Amazon.com's Android app store (sorry, Apple), and the state of patent and trademark filings using the comments box below.
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