Google’s Nexus One Trademark Claim Rejected

Peter Judge has been involved with tech B2B publishing in the UK for many years, working at Ziff-Davis, ZDNet, IDG and Reed. His main interests are networking security, mobility and cloud

Could Google’s Nexus One phone be renamed, because a telecoms company owns the trademark?

Google’s application for the Nexus One trademark has been rejected, because a telecoms company already owns the word “Nexus”. The company is likely to appeal and/or negotiate with the owner, rather than change the name of its flagship phone.

When Google launched its Nexus One phone in January, it had applied for a trademark – but that application has been rejected according to blog reports, because of a “likelihood of confusion” with a Nexus patent (number 3554195) owned by Integra Telecom.

Rival Nexus trademark is for the oil industry

Even if the name changes, we have a Nexus One you can win. Click the image!

Integra’s trademark is for “Providing telecommunication services, namely, transmission of data and voice, and enhanced calling features,” which are listed at some length. However, Integra’s Nexus seems to be a service not a phone, and the trademark clearly says the services are “for participants in the physical oil industry”. The word Nexus is in use on the Integra site but very rarely.

Blog comments suggest Google is most likely to contest the claim arguing there is no danger of confusion, or else offer to buy the trademark from Integra. The issue is unlikely to affect delivery of the phone – although it is rumoured to be delayed in the UK.

Even if Google’s Nexus One plans change, eWEEK Europe already has in its possession a Nexus One phone to offer the lucky winner of our Prize Draw, for all UK readers of our newsletter.

Google is already facing another lawsuit from the estate of author Philip K. Dick for combining the use of Nexus One and Android. The Nexus-6 was the model of android (or “replicant”) which went out of control in Dick’s book Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, filmed as Blade Runner.

Ironically enough, when Apple first launched the iPhone, it ran into trouble, as it turned out Cisco already had a product called the iPhone. A deal was struck between the two companies, and it is very likely that a similar one will be done between Apple and companies including Fujitsu who claim ownership of the iPad name – which Apple used in its latest high profile product.

At the level of technology, rather than trademarks, Apple is currently suing HTC, which makes Google’s Nexus One phone, alleging it infringes Apple patents used in the iPhone. Apple is also suing Nokia over technology patents – in response to a patent suit by Nokia.

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