As soon as the rumor broke that Apple would be renaming its struggling Apple TV to iTV, to better fit with the company’s i[Device] naming system, I thought to myself, “Isn’t ITV the name of a television network in England that always misses key goals in soccer games?” Yes, yes it is. In fact, the network isn’t too keen on Apple using the name iTV, and has promised to “vigorously defend” its IP.
In an interview with Pocket-lint, Mike Large, ITV’s acting group director of Communications, said that it has a “very strong brand, and a highly valued IP.” As such, any move on Apple’s part to re-name the Apple TV could expect to meet a legal challenge.
Keep in mind that Apple has not, in fact, made any such announcement yet, but word on the street is that it will relaunch the Apple TV, giving it access to the App Store and cloud-based streaming of some sort.
Could ITV (the network) simply license its name to Apple, like what Cicso did with the iPhone? It could, sure, but Large says that such a move would “muddy the waters” with respect to its brand awareness.
Looks like Apple could have a bit of a fight on its hands.