Apple and Amazon kiss and make up after 'app store' trademark row

Tech giants end lawsuits over who has the right to use name, clearing way for both companies to use it

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The Independent Online

Apple and Amazon have solved their dispute over who has the rights to the "app store" name, clearing the way for both companies to use it.

A judge in California said the case had been dismissed at the companies' request, stopping a trial that had been planned for August.

Apple launched its App Store in July 2008, while Amazon started Amazon Appstore for Android mobile phones in March 2011. The iPhone manufacturer began a lawsuit the same month.

The companies have made up through the use of a covenant, which Apple issued to Amazon saying it would not sue. In turn, Amazon is not pursuing a counterclaim against Apple.

"We no longer see a need to pursue our case," Apple spokeswoman Kristin Huguet said. "With more than 900,000 apps and 50 billion downloads, customers know where they can purchase their favourite apps."

Martin Glick, a lawyer for Amazon, said in an interview, "This was a decision by Apple to unilaterally abandon the case, and leave Amazon free to use 'appstore'.'"

Apple's case had centred on a claim that Amazon was misusing the "app store" name, confusing developers into thinking the services were linked.

Amazon responded that the term "app store" was generic and applied to any mobile software download service.

"We're gratified that the court has conclusively dismissed this case," Amazon spokeswoman Mary Osako said. "We look forward to continuing our focus on delivering the best possible appstore experience to customers and developers."