Why the Apple Watch isn’t called the iWatch

“If not for a failed company called OMG Electronics, you might be preparing to order an iWatch instead of an Apple Watch,” Ari Levy reports for CNBC.

“In August 2012, Fresno, California-based OMG Electronics applied for the iWatch trademark,” Levy reports. “According to the [crowdfunding] campaign’s description, the company was ‘raising funds for the development and creation of the ultimate mobile device that has the benefits of a wrist watch.'”

“The effort failed,” Levy reports. “OMG isn’t alone…”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: iCar is taken, but Apple Car is available.


  1. a couple of comments:
    1. I think its pretty obvious that Apple uses the “iThing” naming scheme, so I think its a little disingenious for a company to go out and grab names like iCar, or iWatch, or iBuds, knowing full well that Apple follows that naming scheme. Personally, I think Apple should go after companies that do that, because they are capitalizing on a portion of Apple’s trademarked naming schemes. But that is for another thread. 🙂
    2. Apple naming it as Apple Watch, prevents people from doing step #1. By calling it Apple Watch or Apple Car or Apple Buds, or whatever, then it reduces the likelihood of a naming scheme being absconded by other companies. When they go to register a name like “Apple Car” or “Apple Thing”, Apple can now fight it, since its not a product of the Apple company.

    1. If Apple were interested in keeping the ‘i-‘ trademarks to itself, I would think they would take the same action with them as they do with website names.. It’s not like they don’t have the funds to do preventive measures..

      1. There’s something about trademarks that most people don’t realize though. You can’t “squat” trademarks like you can domains.

        It’s actually a very detailed process… You can file an “Intent to Use”, that’ll hold you over for six months – but after that you file for the TM, you have to produce samples and show proof of sales.

        I’ve heard a ton of misguided theories on ways to secure a trademark or win a patent. You’re dealing with specialized attorneys that work for the USPTO, and even though it’s a government organization it’s one of the few that isn’t full of idiots. You aren’t going to play squatting games with these guys, and they have a very good understanding of marketing – meaning they know if you’re trying to rip something off or not.

        I have a small business and have three trademarks, two of which took a lot of very formal back and forth communication with the USPTO – basically stating my case as if I were in court.

        You file for a name, they’ll basically come back and say “ok, cool… but what about these fourteen other companies that use that name?” followed by a list. You’ve got to then explain why you don’t infringe on each one, and if you try and trick them, you’ll get denied instantly.

        Fortunately I was not trying to copy or even get close to anything, but my name is a fairly common word. My case was solid, my point were clear and made sense. I got my trademarks.

      2. Marty, that’s interesting to know.. So basically you could trademark the same name as long as the products to overlap in the users’ mind.. So for example ‘iCart’ could be trademarked by both a person selling network connected go-carts at the same time a company selling internet-connected retrogame cartridges for old game systems.

    2. I think Steve liked the “i” thingy and named everything he could with it. It meant “personal” as opposed to “corporate/business”, i.e. MS.

      I don’t think Cook/Ives are enthralled with the “i” thingy. They let it drop from the iPhoto, for example. I don’t see “i” being associated with any new products. Let’s see what happens to the iMac in the future.

    3. You clearly have no idea how trademark law works.

      Second, Steve Jobs even said he was tired of the “i” nomenclature, as further evidenced by Apple’s naming of its applications, e.g., iPhoto was replaced with Photos. Apple did use iCloud, but that is more likely because the “cloud” naming system was already getting crowded and using the “i” does immediately tie Apple’s cloud offerings to the iPhone and iPad.

  2. I like Watch better anyway. It makes ‘watch’ into a noun.
    iWatch could well mean the verb ‘watch’, which would be thoroughly confusing. The TV could be the ‘iWatch’ as much as the Watch, etc.

  3. I think they changed it so everyone knows it’s an apple product and if they like it they’ll go buy it. Some people that aren’t up on tech think every tablet is an iPad just like every tissue is a Kleenex.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.