High court orders Apple not to use ‘SplitView’

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Delhi High Court has restrained US company Apple from using the name “SplitView” in any manner “for any of the programmes and features within a programme or in any hardware or software”. The order came after Vyooh, an Indian software developer and vendor for Microsoft, claimed it had created similar software in 2005, which it alleged Apple had infringed.

Apple_store_Santa_MonicaSplitView gives users the option of working on multiple windows on a single computer. Apple introduced this feature recently. Vyooh’s promoter, Rohit Singh, contended Apple had copied its product and merely tweaked its interface, thus violating Vyooh’s trademark.

The court found that Apple was using SplitView as the “name” for a product feature and not as part of a sentence that merely described its functionality. It also found that the capital letters used by Apple in SplitView were “indicative of trademark use and not descriptive use”.

The court also held that Vyooh had demonstrated use of the trademark SplitView from 2005. Apple argued that it had launched OS X El Capitan, which contains SplitView, in 2006. However, the judge found that it was only launched in July 2015.

Apple was expected to contest the decision by 9 May.

Shwetasree Majumder, the founding partner of Fidus Law Chambers, is acting for Vyooh on the case.

Pravin Anand, the managing partner at Anand and Anand, is representing Apple.