All Apple-interested eyes are on China these days with all sorts of action being noted for the technology giant in that area of the world. With news today that iPad 2 tablets have been pulled from online sale from Chinese resellers, people are wondering whether it has something to do with the ongoing dispute over the iPad name though Apple itself is denying the connection.
Amazon was included in this action and confirms that they removed the iPad 2 from their Chinese retail website because they were not authorized to sell it.
It just gets confusing from there. Apple had seemingly not done well in Chinese courts with regards to a trademark dispute with Proview, a company claiming to have the rights to the iPad name, though a statement from Apple indicates otherwise:
“We bought Proview’s worldwide rights to the iPad trademark in 10 different countries several years ago. Proview refuses to honor their agreement with Apple, and a Hong Kong court has sided with Apple in this matter.”
This makes sense when you read the findings from the court in a case heard last year indicating that “Proview, its subsidiaries and at least one other company had combined together ‘with the common intention of injuring Apple,’ by breaching the agreement over the iPad name. The court, calling the event a conspiracy, further said Proview had ‘attempted to exploit the situation as a business opportunity,’ by asking for money.”
Best I can tell, mainland China isn’t included because of some legal loophole.
In the meantime, Proview is trying to work with Chinese customs authorities to stop the import of iPads into China in an effort to halt their sales (despite rumors that Customs indicated the iPad is “too powerful to be banned”).
What isn’t being disputed is that Proview owes a lot of money to a lot of people and could really use a few of Apple’s dollars to pay off those debts.
iPad Trademark Still Under Dispute in China, Apple Facing $1.6B Lawsuit
Apple iPad Exports from China Unlikely to be Blocked by Trademark Lawsuit
Chinese Company Demands Ban on All iPad Imports and Exports