Evolving tactics, rule changes make it harder to uncover future Apple product names

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in General Discussion
While Apple is finding it increasingly hard to stop feature leaks, this year, the company has had some success preventing people from learning exact product names -- owing to the countries it's now choosing for trademarks.




To secure U.S. trademark priority for the HomePod a few months ago, Apple for the first time chose to file through Liechtenstein, Bloomberg noted on Monday. This is likely because the country's online trademark database doesn't show product names until an application is approved, which gave the company enough time to make the speaker's name a surprise at this June's Worldwide Developers Conference.

In fact while many features have been exposed, it's still uncertain what Apple will call this fall's iPhones. The devices are typically referred to as the "iPhone 8", "7s," and "7s Plus," but those names are essentially placeholders reflecting expected designs and specifications.

A country Apple has previously chosen to file through, Jamaica, has made changes to the way people can find trademarks in its database. The Jamaica Intellectual Property Office not only requires that people run searches in person, but is now blocking proprietor and date-range searches using its public computers, and forcing people to ask the office for help with the former. "Only information on published and registered marks" is being supplied in those cases, according to the office.

Jamaica's new policies may be in response to inquiries last year by Irish attorney Brian Conroy, which discovered not just the names of the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus, but other inventions like AirPods and the MacBook Pro Touch Bar.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 5
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,549member
    That's some serious research efforts by Conroy. I don't recall ever reading that Apple uses Jamaica to file patents. I assumed that every country has their own patent (and copyright and trademark) offices that would require separate issuances for each nation.
  • Reply 2 of 5
    dewmedewme Posts: 1,943member
    Very intriguing game with Apple singularly plotting to maximize the splash value of a new product announcement while swarming hoards of spoilers try to crash Apple's party plans with preemptive reveals. If it were just a game it would be one thing. It's obvious that Apple has billions of dollars on the line because a highly intriguing and surprising new product announcement can drive demand through the roof, guarantee long launch-day lines, and knock competitors back on their heels. So what's in it for the spoiler swarms? Maybe some low level cyber fame and a token geek news site payout? Page hits? Competitor bounty? Maybe some street cred for being a "great revealer" of secret insider information that can be parlayed into speculating about next year's big new products? I understand that news organizations looking to feed the curiosity of their readers would value these secrets to drive their own business ventures, but I've never understood why anyone who has legitimate access to insider information by virtue of being in the development, sourcing, or partnering channels would want to expose their benefactor to such potentially damaging financial losses just to make a quick buck or garner short lived fame, if only in their own mind. Human nature and selfishness, I guess.

    edited July 2017
  • Reply 3 of 5
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,549member
    dewme said:
    Very intriguing game with Apple singularly plotting to maximize the splash value of a new product announcement while swarming hoards of spoilers try to crash Apple's party plans with preemptive reveals. If it were just a game it would be one thing. It's obvious that Apple has billions of dollars on the line because a highly intriguing and surprising new product announcement can drive demand through the roof, guarantee long launch-day lines, and knock competitors back on their heels. So what's in it for the spoiler swarms? Maybe some low level cyber fame and a token geek news site payout? Page hits? Competitor bounty? Maybe some street cred for being a "great revealer" of secret insider information that can be parlayed into speculating about next year's big new products? I understand that news organizations looking to feed the curiosity of their readers would value these secrets to drive their own business ventures, but I've never understood why anyone who has legitimate access to insider information by virtue of being in the development, sourcing, or partnering channels would want to expose their benefactor to such potentially damaging financial losses just to make a quick buck or garner short lived fame, if only in their own mind. Human nature and selfishness, I guess.

    This article completely goes against the common conspiracy theory that Apple is the source of all leaks when it's clear that leaks serve to make that reveal less impactful.
    Avieshek
  • Reply 4 of 5
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,759member
    Soli said:
    dewme said:
    Very intriguing game with Apple singularly plotting to maximize the splash value of a new product announcement while swarming hoards of spoilers try to crash Apple's party plans with preemptive reveals. If it were just a game it would be one thing. It's obvious that Apple has billions of dollars on the line because a highly intriguing and surprising new product announcement can drive demand through the roof, guarantee long launch-day lines, and knock competitors back on their heels. So what's in it for the spoiler swarms? Maybe some low level cyber fame and a token geek news site payout? Page hits? Competitor bounty? Maybe some street cred for being a "great revealer" of secret insider information that can be parlayed into speculating about next year's big new products? I understand that news organizations looking to feed the curiosity of their readers would value these secrets to drive their own business ventures, but I've never understood why anyone who has legitimate access to insider information by virtue of being in the development, sourcing, or partnering channels would want to expose their benefactor to such potentially damaging financial losses just to make a quick buck or garner short lived fame, if only in their own mind. Human nature and selfishness, I guess.

    This article completely goes against the common conspiracy theory that Apple is the source of all leaks when it's clear that leaks serve to make that reveal less impactful.
    I would like to think that Apple still intentionally leaks misinformation not only to fool people, but also catch who is leaking the information. If this information is only told to a specific set of people (or a person) and it gets out well Apple knows who leaked it then. Apple has said they now have more trouble with Apple employees leaking information than its parts suppliers. 
  • Reply 5 of 5
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,549member
    macxpress said:
    Soli said:
    dewme said:
    Very intriguing game with Apple singularly plotting to maximize the splash value of a new product announcement while swarming hoards of spoilers try to crash Apple's party plans with preemptive reveals. If it were just a game it would be one thing. It's obvious that Apple has billions of dollars on the line because a highly intriguing and surprising new product announcement can drive demand through the roof, guarantee long launch-day lines, and knock competitors back on their heels. So what's in it for the spoiler swarms? Maybe some low level cyber fame and a token geek news site payout? Page hits? Competitor bounty? Maybe some street cred for being a "great revealer" of secret insider information that can be parlayed into speculating about next year's big new products? I understand that news organizations looking to feed the curiosity of their readers would value these secrets to drive their own business ventures, but I've never understood why anyone who has legitimate access to insider information by virtue of being in the development, sourcing, or partnering channels would want to expose their benefactor to such potentially damaging financial losses just to make a quick buck or garner short lived fame, if only in their own mind. Human nature and selfishness, I guess.

    This article completely goes against the common conspiracy theory that Apple is the source of all leaks when it's clear that leaks serve to make that reveal less impactful.
    I would like to think that Apple still intentionally leaks misinformation not only to fool people, but also catch who is leaking the information. If this information is only told to a specific set of people (or a person) and it gets out well Apple knows who leaked it then. Apple has said they now have more trouble with Apple employees leaking information than its parts suppliers. 
    Still? Do we have any evidence that shows they've done this in the past? Was the "lost" iPhone 4 an intentional leak? In most scenarios it just seems like it would hurt Apple to drop upcoming features and designs a year or more ahead of any launch date.
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