NetGuide NZ - Apple faces iPad battle in China

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Apple faces iPad battle in China

Just days after taking a kiwi company to task over a disputed trademark, Apple is receiving a taste of its own medicine, with a Chinese firm claiming it owns the local rights to the term ‘iPad’ and demanding compensation from the Cupertino-based company.

According to a report in the China-based Global Times, the company, Proview Technology, is on the verge of victory in a legal battle over the trademark, and plans to ask for 10 billion yuan (NZ$1.9 billion) in compensation.

The company has also filed lawsuits against Apple’s retailers, and says it is prepared for a long legal fight. 

The details of the case are convoluted, but the dispute seems to arise from confusion between Shenzhen-based Proview Technology and its parent company, Proview International Holdings, which is based in Hong Kong. Apple purchased the local rights to the term 'iPad' from Proview International in 2009, via a business called IP Application Development; however, Proview Technology claims that deal was only for the rights in Taiwan, and the rights in mainland China are still held by them.

A Chinese court rejected a claim from Apple late last year; Proview Technology’s counter-claim is currently under an appeal.

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