“Multi-touch” Trademark Is Denied For Apple

I cannot disagree that the iPhone really introduced multi-touch to the masses making things like pinch-to-zoom almost second nature. Back on January 9th, 2007 Apple attempted to trademark the term Multi-Touch itself, but a lawyer for the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office denied Apple’s initial trademark application. This decision was of course appealed to the Appeal Board, but the Board has upheld the initial refusal. It was pointed out the the term multi-touch has taken on a generic meaning to describe touchscreen technology.

Thus, from the foregoing, we find that “multi-touch” not only identifies the technology, but also describes how a user of the goods operates the device. Based on the evidence discussed above, as well as other evidence in the record, we agree with the examining attorney that MULTI-TOUCH indeed is highly descriptive of a feature of the identified goods. We now consider whether applicant has submitted sufficient evidence to establish acquired distinctiveness of this highly descriptive term.

The full decision can be viewed from the source link below. Be sure to share your thought’s with us on this one. Frankly, I’d like to see Apple never gain a patent or trademark ever again for the shenanigans they have pulled this year.

[via macrumors/Scribd]


About the Author: Harold Williams

Harold was born and raised in Whitehall, NY (supposedly the birthplace of the US Navy). His first real smartphone experience belonged to Nokia and Symbian. Following came years of being a happy BlackBerry follower with a brief moment on Windows Mobile. Once a Droid X landed in his hands, he was forever converted to the dark side of the force. Memories of a Star Tac filled his head with happiness and once again joining Motorola in a new revolution. When not playing guitar he's following the tech world via Twitter and the mobile web trying to fill his need to have and know about the latest and greatest tech. Being grateful for all the free tools Google has provided, he is now sold on Google for life. In the real world he is filling his dorky needs as a project manager for a medical technology company.


  • http://www.dainbinder.com Dain Binder

    Very good decision by the USPTO. Multi-touch, in this context, has been around since 2004 (http://goo.gl/YHpBg and http://goo.gl/XaYXI ).

  • Martin Campbell-Moore

    Apple have lost their image of being cool now. Before, they used to work hard at creating the best looking devices out there, with some of the best functionality (granted, at a heavy price in both financial and restrictive usage) but now they work harder in court.