Apple Faces Trademark Lawsuit Over Snow Leopard Name

Apple Faces Trademark Lawsuit Over Snow Leopard Name
Apple is facing a trademark lawsuit from a Chinese company over the Snow Leopard name, right after settling with another firm over use of the iPad name for $60 million.

Jiangsu Xuebao, a Chinese household chemical company, reportedly trademarked the Snow Leopard name in 2000, the same year that another Chinese company, Proview, trademarked the iPad name.

A Shanghai court has accepted Jiangsu Xuebao's lawsuit and scheduled a hearing on the matter for July 10, according to M.I.C. Gadget.

Unlike Proview, which initially asked for $2 billion in its iPad lawsuit, Jiangsu Xuebao's demands on Apple are more modest: around $80,000 and an apology.

In addition, Jiangsu Xuebao is suing four Chinese companies that advertise and sell Apple's Snow Leopard operating system.

According to M.I.C. Gadget, Jiangsu Xuebao isn't likely to win its case against Apple because the American company did not use the Chinese word for snow leopard, Xuebao, to sell its operating system on its Chinese website.

Apple Faces Trademark Lawsuit Over Snow Leopard Name
Although Jiangsu Xuebao uses the Snow Leopard trademark for two technology products, the company's primary focus is on household items like toothpaste and detergent, M.I.C. Gadget reported.

It also noted that the Chinese company alleges that Apple tried to trademark Snow Leopard in 2008, but that petition was rejected, apparently because Jiangsu Xuebao owned the rights to the name.

On Monday, Apple settled a trademark lawsuit for $60 million with Proview, a financially troubled Chinese company. That settlement was seen by some as a possible stimulus for more trademark lawsuits against the American company, which is one of the richest in the world.

Apple introduced OS X Snow Leopard in 2009. Since then, it has introduced a new version of the operating system called Lion. Another upgrade, called Mountain Lion, is expected to debut as early as this month.

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