Quick! Change BBX to BlackBerry 10 on All the PowerPoint Slides!
Research In Motion’s next generation operating system, the one the company has been marketing for months as BBX, has a new name: BlackBerry 10.
Why the sudden shift? RIM was barred from using the BBX name after a company called Basis International filed for a temporary restraining order, claiming RIM was infringing on its trademark.
You see, Basis has been using the BBX mark for its own software products since 1985 — more than a quarter of a century. The company’s Web site even features a BBX timeline tracking the platform’s 25-year evolution. And more importantly, it has held the trademark on the name since July of 2006.
How is it that branding geniuses at RIM dismissed those not insignificant details when they decided to make BBX the name for their next generation OS for BlackBerry smartphones and PlayBook tablets?
Evidently, they didn’t think they were that big a deal. In their eyes, the two companies are in different lines of business, even though the products at issue here are both software.
But a court disagreed. “The BBX mark is identical to the mark which RIM is allegedly using to present its BBX product,” it said in its ruling. “… And despite the fact that the two companies are not direct competitors, the parties’ respective BBX products are highly related and target the same class of consumers, that is, business application software developers.”
Another humiliation for RIM, which has suffered a number of them recently. Last week two RIM executives — reportedly a VP and an SVP — were arrested after drunkenly disrupting an Air Canada flight from Toronto to Beijing. And early this week, the company’s president director in Indonesia was named as a suspect in the mini-riot that erupted during a BlackBerry promotion in Jakarta.