“Ichiro Kameda, the president of a tiny, two-man company in Osaka, is currently embroiled in a bitter battle with computer maker Apple,” Ryann Connell reports for WaiWai via The Mainichi Daily News.
“‘Putting it simply, the fight is all over what I call our beat generator. There’s a small device with three different, sound-activated motors. It’s a revolutionary invention. You can plug it in to iPods or mobile phones. It can also be programmed to operate only for certain voices,’ Kameda says, referring to his company’s product,” Connell reports.
Connell reports, “Kameda’s commercial pride and joy is actually a women’s sex aid worn inside her most intimate orifices and buzzing her with good vibrations when set off by sound.”
“Though the Japanese Patent Agency gave him the right to use the devise in August last year, and the trademark he chose for the product was approved two months later, he still hasn’t been able to sell. The problem? He called the product the gPod, presumably after the G-Spot and jii, the Japanese word for masturbation,” Connell reports.
Connell reports, “When Kameda applied across the globe to have the gPod registered as a trademark, the computer giant raised objections, saying it was too close a resemblance to its hit iPod (it probably doesn’t help that the gPod even looks like an iPod.) The fight really intensified earlier this year.”
“‘This Japanese lawyer rolled up on my doorstep one day, saying he represented Apple and carrying a letter asking me to change the product name,’ Kameda tells Shukan Gendai,” Connell reports. “Apple legal representatives have repeatedly contacted Kameda, requesting he stop using the gPod trademark, including in one letter with extracts that read: The product planned for use with the trademark ‘gPod’ is a sex aid and masturbation aid. If this product comes onto the market, you will be forced to take all sorts of legal measures to deal with it. We would like to avoid a fight over this and would be prepared to cover any costs you have incurred.“
Connell reports, “Kameda laughs at the reaction. ‘What they were telling me was that they’d pay if I agreed to stop using the trademark. Of course I turned them down. If they sue me, I’ll fight,’ he says. Apple Computer Inc., meanwhile, is, unlike gPod users, keeping tight-lipped about the case.”
Full article here.
MacDailyNews Note: Most of the articles referencing this product (example) are using an incorrect photo of the “gPod” device in question. The “gPod” being shown in most places is actually the gPod Accessible Blood Glucose Meter, a senior design project by Dave Price, Matt Bularzik, Mike Rivera from The University of Connecticut (UCONN).
[UPDATE: 11:45am EST: Removed incorrect reference to gPod packaging photo.]