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Apple's iPhone brand in question

iPhone licensing deal with Cisco still unsigned

Apple introduced its new iPhone device without informing Cisco whether it had accepted a licensing agreement to use the name, which Cisco owns.

The name iPhone is a registered trademark of Linksys, a division of Cisco. Linksys picked up the iPhone name when it bought a company called Infogear Technology in 2000.

Cisco has been in negotiations with Apple for a few years over a trademark licensing agreement, and intensively in the last few weeks, according to Cisco spokesman John Noh. As late as Monday night, final terms were being added to the contract, he said.

"It is our belief that with its announcement today, Apple intends to agree to the final document and public statement that were distributed to it last night, and which addressed a few remaining items. We expect to receive a signed agreement today," Noh told PC Advisor.

As of 8am GMT yesterday, Cisco had not received a signed contract. Apple representatives did not return calls seeking comment.

Apple may have been busy with its last-minute iPhone negotiations. According to the Whois database, the iphone.com internet domain is registered to a California business called The Internet Telephone Company. Calls and emails to this company were not returned.

The iphone.com website has been taken down because it is "having lots of traffic from the launch of Apple iPhone", according to a note on the site.


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