When a global company releases a new product, it must be cautious about its naming. The same name that's available in the country of origin might already be trademarked by other companies in another country. This can eventually lead to competition and copyright lawsuits. And apple Vision Pro is the best example in this regard.
While there's no product name Vision Pro in the US market, huawei registered the same trademark four years ago in China. So, unless Apple takes action to address the naming issue, it may not be able to sell its new Mixed Reality headset in China.
Huawei's Trademark Could Force Apple to Rebrand Its Vision Pro Headset
For those wondering, Apple has recently announced the Vision Pro. It is the first-ever Mixed Reality Headset from the company. And it aims to offer you the most immersive experience with a virtual environment that is totally under your control. To deliver that, Apple has utilized many cutting-edge technologies.
Nonetheless, Apple has yet to make the Vision Pro publicly available as it plans to debut in the United States early next year. After launching it in the United States, Apple will likely make international launch plans soon. Well, that's where it will face troubles.
If you search in the China Trademark Network, you will see that Huawei holds the trademark for “Vision Pro.” And no, it's not something that Huawei did recently. Instead, the trademark passed as early as May 16, 2019. That means Huawei registered the name four years ahead of Apple.
Closer Look At the Vision Pro Trademark
Taking a closer look at Huawei's Vision Pro trademark, you will see that the registered number is 38242888. And it falls under the international class 9 trademark. Class 9 consists of a broad range of products, which ranges from photographic, cinematographic, and signaling devices.
What's more interesting is that Huawei's Vision Pro trademark has exclusive rights for 10 years. That ranges from November 28, 2021, to November 27, 2031. It is approved for products and services, which include head-mounted virtual reality devices, LCD TVs, radio equipment, and many more.
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What Does It Mean For Apple
Considering the fact that Huawei already has exclusive rights to Vision Pro, Apple may not be able to sell its Vision Pro within China. However, it's worth noting that the trademark of Huawei is not directly related to Apple. After all, Huawei has two product lines that are related to the term “Vision.”
That includes Huawei's first-ever smart viewing glasses, the Vision Glass, and the Huawei Vision Smart Screen series. So, the “Vision Pro” name may have been trademarked in anticipation of future additions to the Vision Smart Screen series.
Possible Scenario for Apple
Apple can use one of a few possible scenarios to sell its Vision Pro in the Chinese market. First of all, it can simply rebrand the Mixed Reality Headset and name it differently for the Chinese market. This would be the most straightforward solution to this trademark issue.
Secondly, Apple could come into negotiations with Huawei to use the Vision Pro trademark in China. This would be a time-consuming process, but it might eventually allow Apple to keep the name that it has chosen for its Mixed Reality Headset.
Finally, Apple could simply decide not to sell the Vision Pro in China. But I don't see the possibility of that happening, as this decision would come with a significant loss for Apple as China is one of the largest tech markets in the world. But it would surely let Apple avoid any of the potential legal issues.