updated 04:30 pm EDT, Wed September 25, 2013
Name shared with IGB Electronica
Apple has won an appeal allowing it to continue using the "iPhone" trademark in Brazil. A local company, IGB Electronica, earlier argued in court that it had exclusive Brazilian rights to the name, since it first filed for a trademark in 2000, seven years before the Apple iPhone would be announced. That trademark was granted in 2008 though, and IGB only released its Android-based Gradiente iphone in December 2012, a month before the trademark was due to expire. Nevertheless, Brazil's Institute of Industry Property recently ruled in favor of IGB, prompting the Apple appeal.
In handing the appeal to Apple, Judge Eduardo de Brito Fernandes called the company's iPhone "world renowned," and said it wouldn't be fair to grant exclusivity since "all the [Apple] product's renown and client following have been built on its performance and excellence as a product." He further contended that the Gradiente's name just uses a combination of "Internet" and "phone" as a way of branding a phone with Internet access, and that even prior to IGB's 2000 filling, Apple already had a series of "i" products registered in several countries.
Under the current legal situation, both Apple and IGB will be allowed to use the iPhone name. IGB is planning to launch its own appeal, however.