Apple has been sued over the ‘Animoji’ trademark Apple used for 3D animated emoji style characters that are available on iPhone X and will work through Face ID.
A popular law firm, Susman Godfrey LLP, has sued Apple on behalf of Enrique Bonansea, a U.S. citizen living in Japan. Enrique owns a company called Emonster k.k. in Japan. Enrique claims that he registered the name Animoji with the United States Patent and Trademark Office when he came up with the name in 2014. And he developed an app with the same name and interestingly it is still available on the App Store. The app lets you create your own animations and send them as messages to your friends. And the best thing is, your friends do not need the Animoji app to see your animations, they just work. Enrique said that his Animoji app has over 18,000 downloads and it will remain published on Apple App store.
The lawsuit claims that Apple was aware of the trademark and even tried to purchase it before the iPhone X unveiling. Here’s a statement from the lawsuit:
“This is a textbook case of willful, deliberate trademark infringement. With full awareness of Plaintiffs’ ANIMOJI mark, Apple decided to take the name and pretend to the world that “Animoji” was original to Apple. Far from it. Apple knew that Plaintiffs have used the ANIMOJI mark to brand a messaging product available for download on Apple’s own App Store. Indeed, Apple offered to buy Plaintiffs’ mark but was rebuffed. Instead of using the creativity on which Apple developed its worldwide reputation, Apple simply plucked the name from a developer on its own App Store. Apple could have changed its desired name prior to its announcement when it realized Plaintiffs already used ANIMOJI for their own product. Yet Apple made the conscious decision to try to pilfer the name for itself—regardless of the consequences.”
In summer 2017, different law firms including Emoji Law Group LLC approached the Animoji developers and tried to purchase the trademark and developers believe that these companies are working on behalf of Apple. The Animoji owner refused to sell the trademark and was threatened with a cancellation proceeding if he did not. And on September 11, a day before iPhone X was unveiled, Apple actually filed a petition with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to cancel the Animoji trademark.
Apple has been the center of bad news one after the other for a long time now. Seems like its all hopes are pinned to iPhone X which is expected to break all smartphone sale records.
Maybe you would like to check the specifications and price of iPhone X in Pakistan.