Apple Threatens To Sue Case Maker Over One Letter In Their Name

Apple Threatens To Sue Case Maker Over One Letter In Their Name

Known for being overly protective of its “i” brand, Apple has taken aim at another iPhone case manufacturer whose name is dangerously close to that of Apple’s most popular products. The company in question is called “driPhone,” and it produces a waterproof case for the iPhone and other mobile devices. But that could be about to change if Apple has its way.

driPhone was created by Hayden Crowther, who is the latest to feel the wrath of Apple’s legal team. The Cupertino company states that Crowther’s product is likely to “deceive or cause confusion” because its name is so similar to the iPhone brand, and it is now working to have to block the trademark request in New Zealand.

But Apple isn’t being unreasonable here. It doesn’t want Crother to cease creating his case; all it wants is for one letter in its name to be changed from an “i” to a “y.” “DryPhone” instead of “driPhone.” The company argues, “the applicant’s trademark, or an essential element of it, is identical or similar to a trademark that is well-known in New Zealand [iPhone].”

There’s no denying Crowther’s product name is very similar, and actually, we think Apple’s request might be a blessing in disguise. The driPhone name looks a lot like a contraction of “Doctor iPhone” to us, whereas “DryPhone” seems to be more suited to a waterproof iPhone case.

But Crowther won’t give in easily. He feels Apple’s complaint holds “little weight,” and refuses to rebrand his product. The driPhone logo takes up less space, Crowther says, and it would be cheaper for him to fight Apple’s complaint than to change his branding. Crowther has until April 1 to respond, but it is unlikely that he will comply with Apple’s request, with plans to trademark the driPhone name in the rest of the world.

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  • David Christian Elisa Dengah

    watch out! we got a badass over here.

  • aardman

    Pretty obvious that Mr. Crother is trying to milk as much free publicity as he can for his product.  Not a bad promo strategy, actually.

  • dcj001

    The potential for a lawsuit is not about just one letter – “i.”

    The potential lawsuit is about six letters – “iPhone.”

  • Peter Reynolds

    Is NZ becoming the place to go for legal protection of intellectual property and trademarks?  What’s going on down there?  

  • gbnz

    Another cheapskate company jumping on the i brand  - Apple have a legitimate reason to be pissed for the blatant rip off of iPhone.

About the author

Killian BellKillian Bell is a freelance writer based in the UK. He has an interest in all things tech, but most enjoys covering Apple, anything mobile, and gaming. You can follow him on Twitter via @killianbell, or through his website.

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