Google was handed down a big win this week when a trademark lawsuit concerning its mobile OS was thrown out of court. The case was filed in 2009 and stems from a dispute over the use of the word Android. Eric Sprecht, the owner and founder of the Android Data company, claimed the search giant was infringing on his Android trademark and wanted $94 million in compensation from Google, Android, Inc. and the Open Handset Alliance.
In the late 90?s, Sprecht developed the Android Data Suite and licensed it to several companies between 1998 and 2002. During the midst of his success, Sprecht applied for the Android Data trademark in June 2000 and received approval in October 2002. About the time he finally received his approval notice, Sprecht’s company was failing. He stopped licensing his software, shuttered the company and abandoned the Android Data trademark. It laid dormant until Sprecht got wind of Google’s Android mobile OS. Realizing the potential windfall, he threw together a website and tried to re-claim the usage of his trademarked term. To bolster his efforts, he also filed this aforementioned complaint in court
Thankfully for Google and Android users worldwide, the courts frowned upon Sprecht’s action and dismissed his lawsuit. The court also canceled Sprecht’s original ownership of the term Android Data because of the potential for confusion with Google’s Android operating system.