Google Sued For Chromebook Trademark Infringement

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ISYS, a Chrome OS proponent, has slapped a trademark infringement suit on Google over the Chromebook name

Google is facing another lawsuit over its operating system, but it is not for its Android mobile platform. Intellectual property manager ISYS Technologies sued Google because it claims the search-engine giant’s Chrome operating system infringes on trademarks for its Xi3 ChromiumPC Modular Computer.

ISYS wants to stop Google’s retail partners and Best Buy from selling Chromebooks made by Samsung and Acer, the company said in a statement obtained by Bloomberg.

A Bit Of A Handful For Google

ISYS owns Xi3, a company that used Google’s Chrome open-source operating system to build the ChromiumPC. The machine, which resembles a cross between a toaster and a cheese grater, is a dual-core computer capable of running Windows, Linux and other open-source operating systems.

ISYS said it holds patents for the ChromiumPC and filed a trademark registration for the device with the US Patent and Trademark Office in June 2010. Google, which declined to comment on the lawsuit, has opposed the granting of the trademark, according to ISYS.

Chrome OS-based notebooks are expected to go on sale June 15, providing an alternative to Windows and Mac machines running locally based applications. Samsung is selling a 3G Series 5 Chromebook for $499 and a WiFi-only version for $429. Acer is offering its WiFi-only Chromebook for $349. Xi3 expects to launch its ChromiumPC July 4, with pricing announced at that time.

Google believes most people are moving toward Web applications, and Google is using Chrome to provide a new Web platform upon which it can deliver its search, Web services and ads.

“Although we’ve been promoting, discussing and working on modular computers for some time, we feel the market is now ready for a desktop computer with a cloud-based operating system like the one offered by Google,” Jason Sullivan, president and CEO of Xi3, said in a statement.

Lawsuits are becoming de rigueur for Google as it expands to new markets online. The company is facing a serious threat from Oracle, which claims Google’s Android OS violates patents and copyrights related to its Java platform.

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