Apple Beats Proview's Trademark Claim in California

A California judge has dismissed Proview's lawsuit against Apple over the iPad trademark, it has been reported.

The Wall Street Journal reports that on May 4, Judge Mark Pierce in the Superior Court of the State of California in Santa Clara County approved Apple's motion to dismiss the suit.

Proview first filed the complaint against Apple in the California court in February, as part of a dispute between the two companies over the iPad trademark.

Proview lawyer Christopher Evans said that the California court's decision to dismiss the case "was not based on the merits of the case." An Apple spokesperson argued against Evans' claim, saying: "Proview refuses to honor their agreement with Apple in China."

The decision may not spell the end of the US lawsuit between Apple and Proview, with Evans claiming that the company is "looking forward to presenting the facts in the case to the appellate court, and we are confident that the facts will show that Apple fraudulently obtained the iPad trademarks."

The iPad trademark lawsuit between Apple and Proview in China could be nearing a the end, with the two companies reportedly discussing an out-of-court settlement for the case.

In December 2011, The Shenzhen Municipal Intermediate People's Court in China said that even though Apple had signed a contract for the iPad trademark rights, it had done so only through a subsidiary of Proview in Taiwan. The Shenzhen-based Proview didn't attend any trademark negotiations with Apple, or formally transfer the trademark rights, meaning the contract is not legally binding.

Apple appealed this decision, and has threatened to sue Proview for inflaming the dispute and making misleading statements that could damage Apple's business. Proview is still trying to ban Apple from selling its iPad in China, and Apple is facing the prospect of paying millions in fines.

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