Judge Says No One Is Confusing Apple’s App Store and Amazon’s Appstore

Apple suffered a major setback Wednesday in its fight with Amazon over the use of the term “app store” when a federal judge in Oakland rejected Apple’s claim that the Amazon Appstore for Android was committing false advertising.

U.S. District Judge Phyllis Hamilton noted that although Apple’s digital storefront for apps is called the App Store and Amazon’s is called the Appstore, Apple has failed to provide any proof that Amazon ever tried to pass itself off as a place to get iPhone or iPad apps.

“There is no evidence that a consumer who accesses the Amazon Appstore would expect that it would be identical to the Apple App Store, particularly given that the Apple App Store sells apps solely for Apple devices, while the Amazon Appstore sells apps solely for Android and Kindle devices,” Hamilton wrote in her order to dismiss the claim. “Further, the integration of Apple devices has more to do with Apple’s technology than it does with the nature, characteristics, or qualities of the App Store.”

But while Wednesday’s dismissal is a noteworthy victory for Amazon, the battle between Apple and the online retailer wages on. The false advertising complaint is just one piece of Apple’s lawsuit against Amazon, which also accuses Amazon of copyright infringement and calls for a court order that prevents Amazon from using the Appstore name. For its part, Amazon is arguing that the Appstore and app store names are generic and that Apple doesn’t own exclusive rights to the use of the phrases.

Apple filed its suit against Amazon on the day the Amazon Appstore for Android launched, March 22, 2011. A trial over the matter is set to begin on Aug. 19, 2013

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