Apple’s iPad trademark dispute in China has moved to America after ProView filed a new lawsuit in California. The Shenzhen-based company has taken its claim to court, accusing Apple of deceptively buying the trademark from the company, which was once one of the top computer monitor makers.
The U.S. lawsuit is an escalation of a legal fight already underway in several Chinese jurisdictions.
In some Chinese cities, Proview has successfully blocked Apple from selling its tablets under the iPad name.Proview has been using the iPad name since 1998.
It says Apple executives made "false statements" when its IP application development unit bought the iPad trademark in 2009.
A woman checks her cell phone while walking past advertising for the iPad 2 in Beijing in 2011.
Now Proview wants the trademark sale cancelled and seeks to block all shipments of Apple iPads in and out of China where they’re both made and sold.
Audrey Shum, Partner of Stephenson Harwood Law Firm, said, "Without a pretty good contract, it would still be quite hard for Proview to ask for that kind of damages if the contract is very clear on Apple’s rights on the trademark."
Apple has sold 15 million iPads around the world and is looking to expand significantly, especially in China, where CEO Tim Cook has said sales have ’just scratched the surface.’
Apple on Friday reiterated previous statements saying it had fairly purchased Proview’s rights to the iPad name in China and other countries several years ago.