Apple's Vision Pro headset could encounter a significant hurdle in China. Reports from the Chinese website MyDrivers revealed that Huawei had already secured the trademark "Vision Pro" in China in 2019.
According to the latest report, Huawei actively employs the trademark in China, utilizing it for various products such as smart TVs and smart glasses. Given the existing trademark ownership, Apple might need help using the same name for its headset if it intends to sell the device in China.
The Chinese National Intellectual Property Administration has registered Huawei's trademark, valid from November 28, 2021, until November 27, 2031. This trademark encompasses a wide range of devices, including head-mounted virtual reality products, which could directly affect Apple's headset plans in the Chinese market.
To proceed with this name, Apple may be required to negotiate with Huawei to acquire the "Vision Pro" trademark rights and it could potentially result in a financial settlement between the two companies.
Notably, there are other instances of Apple having to pay a Chinese company for using a product name. In 2012, Apple paid Proview Technology $60 million to secure the "iPad" trademark in China after a series of unsuccessful legal disputes.
As of now, Apple has not released an official statement regarding this trademark challenge. The company might explore various options, such as seeking an alternative name for the headset specifically for China or engaging in negotiations with Huawei for trademark rights.
Apple officially announced its augmented reality headset during WWDC 2023. It will allow owners to interact with apps on its screens, while also viewing the real world at the same time.
On the other hand, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg spoke about the Apple Vision Pro. He said that Meta's Quest VR and Apple Vision Pro don't seem to have the same ends in mind. He said the Quest is all about bringing people together and being active, while he thinks the Vision Pro seemed a bit solitary.
Source: MyDrivers (Chinese)