Apple wants the word 'pod' all to itself

Posted by Emma Woollacott

Apple's going after San Francisco-based start-up Sector Labs in an effort to stop it using the word 'pod'.

Apple says that Sector Labs' video projector, Video Pod, could confuse customers and is designed to piggy-back on Apple's success.
http://www.sectorlabs.com/products/video_pod.htm

The battle lines were drawn early last year, but Apple has now presented a filing to the United States Patent and Trademark Office. Sector labs will put its side of the case in November, with a decision expected in January.

"This is a straightforward case of an applicant who intentionally selected and applied for a mark confusingly similar to Apple's iPod mark in order to capitalize on the fame and goodwill of Apple's mark," says Apple in its initial motion.

"Applicant's obvious attempt to usurp Apple's rights by selecting the Video Pod mark unfairly targets Apple's customers for Applicant's complementary products designed for use with, among others, the iPod device."

It's not the first time Apple's laid claim to the word. Back in 2006, Apple sent a cease-and-desist letter to a company called Podcast Ready, which allows users to download podcasts directly to a portable music player.

It's also gone after products as diverse as Profit Pod, which collects data from vending machines, and TightPod laptop protecting covers.

Pea farmers, beware.