Attempts by Apple to trademark the term ‘App Store' have been slowed by Microsoft, which argues that the phrase is too generic to register as it is often used by competitors and the press.
Apple applied for the trademark in 2008, saying ‘App Store' would define its "retail store services featuring computer software provided via the internet and other computer and electronic communication networks".
However, the application was stalled following a motion filed by Microsoft earlier this week; it stated the following:
Microsoft moves for summary judgment refusing registration of APP STORE. The following undisputed facts establish that "app store" is generic for retail store services featuring apps:
• "App" is a common generic name for the goods offered at Apple's store, as shown in dictionary definitions and by widespread use by Apple and others.
• "Store" is generic for the "retail store services" for which Apple seeks registration, and indeed, Apple refers to its "App Store" as a store.
The undisputed facts further show that the combined term "app store" is commonly used in the trade, by the general press, by consumers, by Apple's competitors and even by Apple's founder and CEO Steve Jobs, as the generic name for online stores featuring apps.
Microsoft launched a rival app store for Windows in October 2009.