Tech Musings: Apple, Cisco, Blackberry

I am musing a bit later into the day and as I was pressed for time – At this hour it is completely plausible that I may not even muse effectively. If you find today’s musings substandard, please come back tomorrow where the musing will start all over again. This is of course unless I get another case of muser’s block.
Yes, writers block can be very real. Sometimes people (writers, bloggers, etc) miss deadlines or just make mistakes such as forgetting to muse before noon. Programmers make mistakes as well and occasionally they write code that points satellites directly into the sun and accidentally causes their batteries to fail. Of course this is probably a mistake that costs hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars.
But who needs videos of Mars when we have the LA-based Apprentice to watch. By the way does this mean the Donald has already purchased all of Manhattan and is looking for a new city to conquer?
As if the problems with bad code weren’t enough, it seems everywhere you look you see security holes. Adobe patched their PDF flaw today thankfully. Apple now apparently has a flaw with their Safari browser which puts their browsers at risk. This is not great news to me as my 3-year-old has a Mac and I have no idea how to update the software on it. I guess I will be learning more about Macs this weekend. Hopefully between now and then I will figure out where the other mouse button is (I still can only find one). I have been looking for the blasted thing since October.
But at Apple it looks like the lawyers screwed up as much as the software writers. Why? Well by now the only news bigger than the Apple iPhone is the fact that Cisco is suing Apple because the networking leader also has a product called the Cisco iPhone.
It seems that Apple and Cisco have been negotiating over the use of this name for years and one would surmise the two companies could not come to an agreement which Apple was comfortable with so Apple just said the hell with Cisco and went ahead and made their product announcement.
In my opinion, the argument Cisco will make in a preliminary injunction is that the product from Apple will cause confusion in the market. Apple will argue that Cisco’s customers are sophisticated business customers and Apple is targeting young consumers. They will also argue the phones have different uses as Cisco’s phones do not work on mobile networks, etc.
Both iPhones will work on WiFi connections however so it could be tough to argue these products are very different.
The iPhone name has been used by other companies so Cisco may not have much of a leg to stand on here. In addition, they will have tough time proving confusion as Apple already has a family of marks that begin with the letter i. Most people probably think the iPhone comes from Apple and this is bad for Cisco.
Apple’s argument? If Cisco has such a strong mark how can the surveys of potential customers (surveys are often used in courts to show confusion) show that most people think the phone comes from Apple and not Cisco?
The trouble for Apple is that their iPhone is a smartphone and that implies corporate usage. For Cisco the problem is no one on planet Earth besides a handful of geeks and bloggers knows they have a product named iPhone
In addition Apple seems to own the iPhone trademark outside the US while Cisco owns it in the US.
In the end the two companies will likely agree to precede their product names with their company names and/or logos. So we will see an Apple iPhone and a Cisco/Linksys iPhone.
My take? This is all lots of fun to write about but really, who cares. I hope these guys get this settled quickly and go back to taking over the world.
Well getting back to the bedroom. The bedroom? How did we end up there? Well it seems this article from Forbes informs us that Smartphones such as Blackberries are ruining our sex lives. This is tough to believe as in the last 18 months about 70% of the TMC team has had babies (Dave Rodriguez had baby Alex Rodriguez today in fact.) This would certainly explain why I can’t get anyone at work to respond to my e-mails at night. 🙂
Oh and if you are reading my musings in bed, please put the device down. From there, you’re on your own.

  • VoIP Blog -
    January 11, 2007 at 7:14 pm

    iPhone Vs. iPhone: Cisco Vs. Apple

    Tom has done a great job on this article and he is right on here – on many fronts. This is a must read if you are interested the iPhone vs. iPhone case. He cites trademarks and the shell company…

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