Remember the problems Apple had with the iPhone’s name (and the lawsuit with Cisco which already had the name iPhone on a product)? Ken Segall thinks Apple’s naming drama might be repeated.
After iMac, iPhoto, iMovie, iPod and iTunes, Apple had well established its i-rhythm. And the fact that Apple was feverishly working on a phone was one of its worst-kept secrets. For many months leading up to the device’s unveiling, the press was consumed with speculation about what an “iPhone” would be.
The problem, of course, was that Cisco already had a shipping product with the name iPhone. That whole issue could be repeated with an iWatch.
First, as product names go, iWatch is every bit as obvious as iPhone was. Apple would desire it for exactly the same reason: it clearly describes the category it is about to disrupt, and it echoes all the i-goodness that came before it. It’s a name that single-handedly does an awful lot of the heavy lifting for the marketing dept.
Unlike iPhone, which ended in an agreement with Cisco, products with ‘watch‘ in the name are everywhere, including iSwatch.
Second, securing the iWatch name may require some fancy footwork. According to Bloomberg there are more than 50 companies that can lay claim to the name. The biggest one of the bunch is Swatch, which has been marketing a product called iSwatch since 2009. Swatch is already making noise that the name iWatch will cause confusion in the marketplace.
This might be an issue where we see the difference between Steve Jobs’ leadership and Tim Cook’s leadership.