Apple’s Watch is one of the most eagerly awaited products in the market today. The sheer brilliance of its design and the promise of quality by Apple has made the “tech freaks” wait with their mouth watering. The Watch is expected to be launched in April and is expected to start at $549 in the USA. The watch is dubbed the “most personal device” to be designed by Apple so far.
The Apple watch is expected to be launched on April 24 in 9 countries and will not be launched in Switzerland because of a trademark already being in force. Switzerland is known for its production of luxury watches and surely Apple would have loved it for the Watch to be launched in Switzerland.
Leonard Timepieces has a trademark registered in the country. The trademark is registered under the class for jewellery, stones, and watches. The trademark is owned by William Longe since 1985.
The regulations in Switzerland with respect to trademark are same as in India. The period of registration is 10 year and can be further renewed indefinitely every 10 years. The trademark of Mr.Longe is supposed to expire on 5th December 2015.
The launch of the watch in Switzerland has been put on hold and can be expected to launch after 5th December 2015.
The Next Step
There are questions which arise in this case :
Is Apple willing to wait until the end of the year to launch its product?
What if Mr.Longe renews his trademark?
What will Apple do if the renewal is done?
Honestly, I think Apple will be willing to wait until the end of the year or directly launch its next generation of watches in Switzerland. But it can be a hassle if the trademark is renewed. Apple might have to call upon their team of lawyers into action.
Another thing which is possible is Apple can ask Mr.Longe for authorization for the use of the trademark in the circumstance that Mr.Longe chooses to renew his trademark. And if Mr.Longe is willing to capitalize on this opportunity , then I think he should renew his trademark and come to an agreement with Apple.
This is not the first time that Apple has been involved in a tangle like this. Apple previously was involved in IPR suits with other small and big companies. Either be it with their software’s of iTunes or be it with their products, Apple has not come up against something like this for the first time. Apple Inc. is surely going to find a way around this glitch and will come up with a solution.