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Apple settles iPad trademark dispute in China for $60M

Apple had previously accused Proview of tricking it into signing a contract that would raise questions about the trademark's rightful owner.

Steven Musil Night Editor / News
Steven Musil is the night news editor at CNET News. He's been hooked on tech since learning BASIC in the late '70s. When not cleaning up after his daughter and son, Steven can be found pedaling around the San Francisco Bay Area. Before joining CNET in 2000, Steven spent 10 years at various Bay Area newspapers.
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Steven Musil
2 min read

Apple's iPad trademark trouble in China appears to be behind it.

The consumer electronics giant has settled its dispute over ownership of the name that graces its line of wildly popular tablets for $60 million, according to an Associated Press report.

CNET contacted Apple for comment and will update this report when we learn more.

The settlement puts to rest a legal spat that spanned two continents. Proview had filed numerous lawsuits in China that seek to keep Apple's tablet off retailer shelves and stop Apple from using the iPad trademark on its products.

Proview also filed a lawsuit against Apple in the U.S. in mid-February, claiming the company committed fraud when it acquired the iPad trademark from Proview through U.K. subsidiary IP Application Development in 2009. It accused Apple of acting "with oppression, fraud and/or malice" for not disclosing that it would be the eventual trademark holder. Apple countered by saying it purchased the rights to the name in 10 different countries and eventually won a dismissal of the lawsuit on that basis.

However, Proview claimed that its subsidiary didn't have the authority to sell the trademark and has reportedly been looking to settle out of court over the issue. The companies had reportedly been in negotiations over a settlement amount over the rights, with Apple offering $16 million, and Proview looking for much more.

Apple accused Proview "misleading" Chinese courts by tricking it signing a carefully crafted agreement in 2009 that has raised questions over the trademark's rightful owner in China.

But while Proview was been battling Apple over the trademark, it was also fighting to stay in business. Taiwan-based Fubon Insurance, looking to recoup millions in outstanding debt, filed an application in March to declare Proview bankrupt and have its assets liquidated.