Uh Oh -- RIM May Have to Change BBX Name Due to Trademark Issues
October 21, 2011 10:30 AM
(Source: Screen Gems)
Issues continue for struggling phonemaker
Waterloo, Ontario-based Research in Motion, Ltd. (
) hardly needs more bad news. The smartphone maker was once growing at a rapid pace globally in the U.S. Now it has seen its
growth slow globally
, and has seen itself
losing market share
and, more importantly, unit sales in the U.S. To top it off, the company forced customers to suffer through days without service, thanks to
a global service malfunction
. With investors calling for either the company to
sell itself or to adopt sweeping management changes
, the time for decisive action is now.
RIM has seemingly taken the type of bold moves necessary, unveiling relatively
impressive new hardware
a slick new OS
based on its recent acquisition QNX. But in an embarassing twist, it maybe forced to change the name of that new OS from BBX.
After announcing the new OS at its fourth annual BlackBerry Developer Conference (DevCon) in San Francisco, Calif., it was revealed that RIM ignored that there was already a preexisting service of this name.
BASIS Technology Corp., a business software firm, owns trademarks internationally on BBx [
BASIS Technology says it is suing RIM to prevent the use of its trademark, commenting, "[A] new BlackBerry operating system (OS) named "BBX" is causing great confusion for the worldwide BASIS community and could potentially harm BASIS' [sic] reputation for enabling cross-platform application development....We are fielding numerous customer inquiries voicing their confusion about the RIM announcement."
RIM announces BBX... just kidding! [Source: RIM]
RIM claims it did nothing wrong. It
, "RIM has not yet received a copy of the legal complaint described in Basis International's press release, but we do not believe the marks are confusing, particularly since our respective companies are in different lines of business."
But ultimately RIM and BASIS Technology both run internet services, so the possibility for confusion is high, especially considering that RIM precisely copied the name of BASIS's flagship product.
This is an unfortunate situation for RIM as retracting the name would create customer confusion and add another item to the long list of company problems. BBX seemed the perfect name as it's a natural word blend of "BlackBerry" and "QNX". But apparently RIM has fallen victim to yet another potentially serious setbak.
"And boy have we patented it!" -- Steve Jobs, Macworld 2007
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