Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) has been a target of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) lawyers in recent months, just like Samsung Electronics Col. Ltd., Motorola Mobility, Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) and Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT). All of these companies have a certain bond with each other, having been on the receiving end of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) lawsuits.
However, what sets Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) apart from these others is that Amazon.com Inc. (AMZN) isn’t dealing with intellectual property issues involving patents – this lawsuit being featured has to do with the term “app store” and how Amazon.com Inc. is using it, allegedly as false advertising according to Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL).
In a case that has been in the system for 18 months, Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) filed a motion in U.S. District Court last week having the false-advertising suit thrown out, saying that Apple Inc. (AAPL) has not yet proven that the “Amazon Appstore” is somehow confusing consumers as opposed to the two-word “App Store” used by Apple Inc. In fact, Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) cited in its motion that even former Apple CEO Steve Jobs and current boss Tim Cook use the team “app store” to refer to the competing app marketplaces, mainly on the Android operating system created by Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG).
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) sued Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) over the use of the team “app store” to refer to its marketplace, but lawyers for the online shopping giant said the term has become so generic that it cannot cause confusion. In addition, Amazon.com Inc. (AMZN) lawyers claimed that the false advertising claim by Apple Inc. (AAPL) has no merit because Apple could not cite any false statements having to do with the term. “The word ‘appstore’ is part of the name of Amazon’s store; it is not a statement about the nature, characteristics, or qualities of Amazon’s store, much less a false one,” the filing added.
The filing by Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) can be found here as a PDF file. Some investors in Amazon.com Inc. stock, like billionaire fund manager Jim Chanos of Kynikos, will likely appreciate a legal battle being decided quickly – since it affects a company’s bottom line. But what do you think – is theterm “appstore” confusing, and does Aple have a case?