Philippine News

Not a copycat | MyPhone claims victory over Apple trademark case

MANILA – Solid Broadband Corporation, the startup behind local smartphone brand MyPhone, won a trademark case filed by tech giant Apple, which contends that its a copycat of the iPhone.

Solid Broadband became the first company to launch a locally-branded mobile phone, registering the “my|phone” trademark on June 25, 2007, four days before Apple released its first-generation iPhone in the United States. Apple got word and started a legal battle two years later in the Philippines led by the Quisumbing-Torres law firm, but was kept below the radar.

Apple pointed out that my|phone is “confusingly similar” to its flagship, saying that it was “likely to deceive or cause confusion.” Similarities it cited includes how the vertical bar looked liked the letter I in iPhone and the way its pronounced (mi-phone).


But the Intellectual and Property Office (IPO), in a decision on May 19, ruled in favor of Solid Broadband, saying that there is “no likelihood of confusion of business” involving the trademark and marketing activities of both companies.

“The fame and popularity of iPhone in fact makes it improbable for one to confuse MyPhone product as an iPhone,” it added.

“This is a case of a giant trying to claim more territory than what it is entitled to, to the great prejudice of a local ‘Pinoy Phone’ merchant who has managed to obtain a significant foothold in the mobile phone market through the marketing and sale of innovative products under a very distinctive trademark,” IPO director Nathaniel Arevalo said in the the decision.

What’s also undeniably different between the two brands are the prices of their phones – MyPhones budget-conscious  P1,000 – P9,000 range compared to Apple’s hefty P30,000 – P38,000 iPhone 6 models.

Partner with adobo Magazine

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