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Dispute between Gradiente and Apple over iphone will be judged by Supreme-Court Justice

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The dispute between Gradiente and Apple over the iPhone brand will be judged by the Federal Supreme Court (STF). The companies did not reach a common agreement on the conflict, leaving the decision to the Federal Supreme Court.

Background of the dispute

According to Valor Econômico portal, IGB Eletrônica – owner of Gradiente – claims that in 2000, seven years before Apple launched its first smartphone in Brazil, it applied for the registration of “G Gradiente iPhone” brand. Apple disputes that the “i” family of products, spelled with a capital “p”, has been in use since 1998.

The debate over the iphone brand

In 2018, a decision by the Federal Supreme Court did not prevent Apple from using the iPhone brand in Brazil, even with the registration of “Gradiente iphone” brand, by IGB Eletrônica.

Gradiente claimed that it applied for the “Gradiente iphone” trademark at INPI (National Institute of Industrial Property) in 2000, but the result was only released in January 2008. The company argues that Apple started marketing the product in Brazil in the 2nd half of 2008, and had its trademark registration application denied by IPNI, due to the existing registration.

Due to the defeats in court, Gradiente appealed to the Federal Supreme Court. Valor highlighted that the understanding had been that the worldwide success of Apple’s iPhone would be a fait accompli throughout the world.


Written by Marcos Ferreira, Content Assistant at Drummond Advisors