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iPod, BlackBerry, Twitter: how 10 iconic products got their names

What's behind the biggest tech brands

The makers of these 10 products - the BlackBerry, the iPod, Firefox, Twitter, Windows 7, ThinkPad, Android, Wikipedia, Mac OS X, and Red Hat Linux - have all displayed certain amounts marketing savvy, common sense and fun-loving spirit in settling on their products' names. Here are the intriguing, surprising and sometimes predictable accounts of their creation.

Why is Windows 7 called Windows 7

While Microsoft's next OS is kind of a 'Ho-hum' name, one has only to look at what happened with the most recent Windows release to understand why Microsoft might have gone back to a tried-and-true naming philosophy: Vista? Ouch. Windows 95 and XP? Those have done much better.

Microsoft's Mike Nash announced the name this way: "Simply put, this is the seventh release of Windows, so therefore 'Windows 7' just makes sense." We're betting that Microsoft execs are hoping that number 7 will deliver on its promise of luck--they could sure use a win after Vista.

Why are ThinkPads called ThinkPads?

thinkpadThe venerable line of PC laptops rolled onto the scene in 1992. While the concept was spot on, there was turmoil at IBM as to what to call it.

IBM's pen-computing group wanted to keep it simple; they liked ThinkPad. But IBM's corporate naming committee didn't - it didn't have a number, and every IBM product had to have a number, and how would ThinkPad translate into other languages?

Due to the chutzpah of the IBMer who unveiled it, ThinkPad won out, and it was a huge hit for IBM, which eventually sold it to Lenovo in 2005.

How did the iPod get its name?

How did the BlackBerry get its name?

How did Firefox get its name?

How did Twitter get its name?

How did Windows 7 get its name?

How did the ThinkPad get its name?

How did Google Android get its name?

How did Wikipedia get its name?

How did Mac OS X Leopard get its name?

How did Red Hat Linux get its name?


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