Beijing authorities have reportedly opened an investigation into Apple's possible infringement of Proview's iPad trademark in China, reports GlobalTimes.
According to the Beijing Evening News, the Xicheng District Administration for Industry and Commerce has investigated the case, as it is the district where one of the five Apple stores in China is located. Apple has been denied the rights to the trademark for the term "iPad" in China, after a legal battle with Hong Kong-based Proview Technology. Proview registered the iPad trademark in markets as early as 2000, long before Apple unveiled the iPad in .
"Proview made a formal complaint to the Xicheng administration in 2011 and they had planned to slap Apple with a 240 million yuan ($38 million) fine, but it was suspended after Apple's objections," said Xie Xianghui, a lawyer from the Shenzhen branch of Grandall Law Firm. Xie says that Proview has also filed lawsuits against Apple authorized retailers and plans to ask for 10 billion yuan ($1.5 billion USD) in compensation from Apple.
The Xicheng District Administration says the situation is under investigation and they haven't announced the possibility of a fine for Apple.
Apple filed an appeal on January 5th with the Higher People's Court of Guangdong Province, after losing its claim to the trademark in the Shenzhen Intermediate People's Court. Apple says that a Proview subsidiary in Taiwan sold the trademark rights to a UK company called "IP Applications" which then sold the mark to Apple in 2010.
This reminds me of that lodsys case with Apple and it's App developers.
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