Apple fails to acquire Touch ID trademark
The U.S. Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) has refused the application by Apple to register Apple’s Touch ID Trademark according to a report by PatentlyApple. Why? Simple, it’s too similar to a patent called Kronos Touch ID.
The refusal is due to the likely confusion caused by the way Apple presented the application to the USPTO. This isn’t the end of the road though. The American company can reapply within six months by working out the problems of this application. However, the application was denied on May 7 so the clock is down to four months instead of the original six. If the second time isn’t successful, Apple could face an automatic trademark abandonment and this would cause a lot of problems for the future products by Apple which utilize Touch ID way more than we think.
The iPhone 5s was the device that first featured Touch ID last year. The feature is the simplest and most basic way to unlock your phone. However, Apple is looking to expand this feature with iOS 8 with making it available for third party apps. This implies that this lock system will used to unlock apps as well instead of just the iPhone as a device!
Future iPads are rumored to be in the works of being equipped with the Touch ID feature too. We’re quite sure this is not the end of the product line that will have the lock system.
When Apple reapplies for the trademark, it’ll need to clear up the confusion due to the similarity in names and services. It needs to include what makes Touch ID different and how it is in no way a copy paste of the Kronos Touch ID. The company needs to stay away from excessive wording and basically just explain how their trademark won’t negatively influence Kronos’ trademark.
So, Apple may need to give a revamp to the lock feature with a new name by November 7th this year. If it does, we’re expecting an announcement either right before or alongside the iPhone 6 launch. It’s either Apple does this or just buy the trademark from Kronos. That’s easier but the sound ka-ching will be heard loud and proud.