Lower Chinese court rules iPads should be pulled from retailers

Apple's `iPad' trademark scuffle with Shenzhen-based Proview Technology recently suffered a setback when a lower court in southern China ruled that retailers in the country should pull out the iPads from their stores.

According to an Associated Press report, Proview's lawyer Xie Xianghui said that the ruling that retailers should discontinue the sales of the iPad came on Friday at the Intermediate People's Court in the city of Huizhou.

The Apple-Proview dispute revolves around the `iPad' trademark which the iPhone-maker bought from Proview Taiwan - a subsidiary of the troubled Hong Kong-listed electronics firm - for several countries in 2009. While Proview claims rights to the iPad name in China, Apple has been contending that it had bought Proview's worldwide rights to the iPad trademark in as many as ten countries several years back --- in a deal which Proview is now refusing to honor.

Meanwhile, the argument which Proview has put forth is that one of its affiliates that sold the name to Apple years back was not authorized to do so. The company is also reportedly trying to work out an out-of-court settlement with Apple on the issue, but Apple is yet to give a positive response.

With Proview representatives already having threatened to file a $2 billion lawsuit against Apple in US courts, a Proview attorney has revealed that Proview's arguments in that case would chiefly be that the sale of iPad trademark to Apple was based on the condition that Apple's devices will not compete with Proview products.