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I found the following post on Google+:

So it Turns Out LG Released a Linux Based Tablet Called iPad 9 Years Ago

Apparently iPad was first introduced by South Korean hardware manufacturer LG Electronics at the CeBIT computer fair in Hanover, Germany 9 years ago.

Also the name iPhone and iOS was licensed from Cisco.

Sources:

  1. Apple stole the iPad trademark from LG
  2. Apple stole the name iOS from Cisco
  3. Apple stole the name iPhone from Cisco

Story Via Reddit

PS: Don't forget to follow the discussion on Reddit

Are the allegations true?

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2 Answers 2

up vote 21 down vote accepted

Apple now owns the iPad trademark. The trademark (Serial No. 76497338) was filed by Fujitsu in March of 2003 for their iPad wireless handheld computing device used by retailers. Records at the U.S. Patent and Trademark office show that the trademark was assigned to Apple on March 17.

Cisco has agreed to license the iOS trademark to Apple for use as the name of Apple’s operating system for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. The license is for use of the trademark only and not for any technology.

Cisco and Apple® today announced that they have resolved their dispute involving the “iPhone” trademark. Under the agreement, both companies are free to use the “iPhone” trademark on their products throughout the world. Both companies acknowledge the trademark ownership rights that have been granted, and each side will dismiss any pending actions regarding the trademark.

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Can you please include some brief excerpt to make your answer more complete? –  Sklivvz Sep 1 '12 at 21:05
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So the summary of the answer would be: No, Apple paid for its trademarks. –  matt_black Sep 2 '12 at 20:23
    
@matt_black: yeah, it would be summary of this answer, while in fact it's not the case. I wouldn't say that being caught and forced to pay is same as "No, they didn't steal". –  vartec Sep 3 '12 at 12:32

Yes, No, Yes...

  • iPad — apparently LG never bothered to register that as trademark. Fujitsu did have a POS device called iPAD, and it was a point of trademark dispute between them and Apple. Apple settled out of court and paid estimated $4 mln to Fujitsu (source: NYT). This only took care of trademarking in USA, however not elsewhere in the world. For example Apple was sued in China by Proview, I-PAD brand holder for Chinese market since 1999 (source: ArsTechnica). Apple was forced to settle for $60 mln in that case.

  • iOS — after previous run in with Cisco (see below), in this case Apple played it safe and licensed the name before Cisco sued them. (source: paidContent).

  • iPhone — Apple used brand iPhone without consent of the trademark holder - Cisco. Subsequently Apple was sued by them. (source: Cisco). They have settled out of court.

On question whether that qualifies to be called "stealing" — in current legal nomenclature, pushed also by key players such as Apple, trademark infringement is considered intellectual property theft.

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So in every case Apple ended up paying. And they probably gained nothing from previous reputation since none of the trademarks they used had much if any profile. The same could be said of the company name. Apple Computer didn't "steal" any revenue from Apple Records (the Beatles company) but they ended up having to pay for the rights to use the name for music related uses. –  matt_black Sep 3 '12 at 15:08
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Using IP without the consent of IP owner is IP theft. The fact that they got caught and had to pay doesn't mean, they didn't steal it in the first place. –  vartec Sep 3 '12 at 15:12
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@matt_black: as for Apple Computer vs Apple Corps, they ended up paying damages for stealing Apple Corps name and logo, and signed agreement not to enter music market. Which they breached when they rolled out iTunes, but at that point they had enough cash to throw at lawyers, to get out on technicality... it was ruled that iTunes is not in business of music distribution. –  vartec Sep 3 '12 at 15:20
    
but this is a very rarefied definition of stealing. Apple Corp's business was in no way damaged or impacted by Apple Computer's choice of name and the same is true of the other cases mentioned. Legalistically it is stealing, but not in the normal sense of the word. –  matt_black Sep 3 '12 at 15:41
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@matt_black: Court ruled otherwise. On 3 occasions. And yes, it's exactly what definition of IP theft is, as forced by players such as Apple. Eg. ncpc.org/topics/intellectual-property-theft Trademark infringement is given as example of IP theft. That site is created by US DoJ. –  vartec Sep 3 '12 at 15:54

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