HP files for TouchPad trademark - bye bye "PalmPad"? | webOS Nation

HP files for TouchPad trademark - bye bye "PalmPad"? 46

by Dieter Bohn Wed, 19 Jan 2011 2:33 pm EST

Wondering what HP is going to call these tablets? Wondering what the plan is for the "Palm" brand going forward? Us too. While previously we'd had high hopes for "PalmPad" after HP filed for a trademark on the term back in July, today we learn that they've also filed for a trademark on "TouchPad."

They've said that it applies to, well, darn near everything digital you can think of, from "computer hardware" to "mobile and handheld communications devices for sending and receiving data" to "prerecorded magnetic data carriers featuring software for use in connection with handheld communications devices, namely, mobile phones and smartphones" to "database management software," but to our mind a TouchPad is generally the pointing device on a laptop. 

We'll see what happens on February 9th, obviously, but until then this whole branding question is going to be, well, a question.

Source: uspto; via PocketNow and Engadget



Yawn. I need some new device on Sprint news! hehehe, just kidding, sort of. I'm excited for Feb. 9th to roll around.

que the "kill Palm / save Palm" posters......

No, cue the "superphone or there I go" crowd.

I say they just call it "The TouchPad".

Catchy, only 3 syllables, straight to the point.

You mean like "The Facebook"?

so hp touchpad 7" and hp touchpad 9"?

to sprint, what are the chances that "industry first" sept 7th event mentions a touchpad?

I hope that's the name of the new charging pad for the tablets. Touchpad for tablets and Touchstone for phones.

This sounds very logical.

Slick observation, though if pressed I would bet against it. Still, I like the idea.

Can I haz a leak on phones headed to Sprint?!

bigger , multimedia device = touchpad
smaller, ebooker device= palmpad
it works for me

Wow, so this article was 7 minutes away from being posted EXACTLY 6 MONTHS after the P|C post about the "PALMPAD" Trademark... Weird.

Also, did some digging around in the PalmPad's online filings, and appears that in October some more stuff happened... And maybe was rejected?? I'm not familiar with Trademark filings and all that, so I'm not 100% on that. But it appeared that they (the Patent and Trademark Office) didn't like that PalmPad was so close to Palm and Palm OS in name... And they also wanted some clarification on words used as "Identification of Goods"... So if it was indeed rejected, maybe this new TouchPad one is in response to that.

Here are some quotes from the document:

"Registration of the applied-for mark is refused because of a likelihood of confusion with the marks in U.S. Registration Nos [lists 5 registration numbers]."

"Trademark Act Section 2(d) bars registration of an applied-for mark that so resembles a registered mark that it is likely that a potential consumer would be confused or mistaken or deceived as to the source of the goods and/or services of the applicant and registrant."

"Applicant’s mark PALMPAD is similar to the registered marks PALM because applicant’s mark contains the entirety of the registered marks. Simply adding the term PAD to its mark does not differentiate the marks sufficiently to overcome the striking similarity created by applicant’s use of the registered mark PALM in its mark. The mere addition of matter to a registered mark generally does not obviate the similarity between the marks nor does it overcome a likelihood of confusion under Trademark Act Section 2(d)."

Here's a link to the document I'm referring to: http://tmportal.uspto.gov/external/PA_TOWUserInterface/OpenServletWindow...

And here are more documents about the PalmPad filing:

Remember, the above stuff is about the PALMPAD filing from 6 months ago. Even so, it was all news to me, so I thought I'd share.

Funny thing is, it appears that PALMPAD was rejected because it was too similar to PALM and PALM OS... But HP now owned all that, sort-of, right? It's not like they filed for APPLEPAD or something.

So maybe there was some confusion at the Patent and Trademark Office?

Not only that, but they think people can't understand that PalmPAD is different from Palm, yet they have no trouble differentiating between iPod and iPad??

Definitely looks like there was some confusion somewhere in the patent office. So what if it's too similar to Palm and PalmOS, HP owns both now.

errr... Palm didnt even own all of PalmOS as a portion of it was sold off if I remember. HP would only own WebOS not PalmOS

Back in the day, Palm owned both the hardware they produced and the software that ran on it. Presumably because of some restructuring done to handle licenses of the software as well as development, the software group was split off into its own company within Palm called "Palmsource". Palmsource was then bought by an Asian corporation called "Access," at which point Palm became "PalmOne" and Access continued developing PalmOS, of which PalmOne was it's major licensee (they licensed PalmOS for their devices and had the right to customize the software as needed). Some short time later PalmOne re-acquired the right to use the "Palm" branding exclusively, thereby becoming "Palm" once again and forcing Access to change the name of PalmOS to "Garnet OS," which it remains to this day. So, HP Palm does not "own" any part of PalmOS (now Garnet OS) at all, but DOES own the "Palm" brand name.

heres a curious question, what if Palm a division of HP had filed for the trademark, wonder if there would still be confusion, and HP could still market it, since they are the Parent Company.

Cant think of a good analogy...damnit

I would be surprised if this were a serious application for the name of the device, given (as Dieter points out) the term "Touchpad" has a long history of meaning a touch-sensitive surface for computers, including (in one of many references on HP's own site) a page (at http://h20426.www2.hp.com/program/ergonomics/au/en/Scenario4.asp) that includes the phrase, "Using a touchpad restricts flexibility and fit." *Not* what wants to have competitors see and use. {Jonathan}

Not only that, but wouldn't it be tough for HP to trademark the name because it contains such a generic term (touchpad)?

That was my thought as soon as I saw this article. Touchpad? Yeah, I've been using those on laptops for many, many years. Marketing department working overtime here?

It makes perfect sense in keeping with the HP Touchsmart line of computers (which are awesome, by the way, I use mine for everything!).

"ToucHPad" has an "HP" in the middle. Graphically it could be kinda clever.

"TouchPad"??? my laptop has one of those too!! I like PalmPad better..

hopefully it will be 'bye bye'

i guess i'm in the minority who likes this name then. the fact that "touchpad" has an existing meaning does not detract, and i would say, helps with this name. they are essentially taking a generic noun and making it a proper noun.

so, what do we know about touchpads? most people think of the touch-pad as the thing that one uses to control the mouse on the screen. in converting it to a proper noun, they, HP is leveraging the familiar "Pad" as popularized by Apple, and really making a push that this is THE touchpad.

it makes sense. PalmPad was cute but I can see HP planning to take webos far beyond Palm's brand value.

and stop with the webos on sprint pleas already. Sprint's day in the sun is 2 days BEFORE HP's day...therefore, Sprint is not getting a new webos device anytime soon. They wouldn't set up a press event before the manufacturers product announcement. (i'm bummed too. Don't shoot the messenger)

Is it possible with Touchpad could be akin to Touchstone???

If they redesigned the stone to make it a pad that could charge multiple devices at once, the "Touchpad" could be an appropriate name.

Just a thought from someone WAY out of the know.

Seems plausible. The name "Touchstone" won't really make sense for a tablet charger, since it would need to me much larger for a tablet and won't be a "stone" anymore.

touchpad is a lame name, palmpad is much better. touchpad is to generic.

"who makes the touch pad?"
"i donno its stupid anyways"

"who makes the ipad?"
"umm... apple duh!"

-need to brand it better

the iPad works for apple because everyone is already aware of the i products that apple has...

HP is essentially doing the same with the word "touch" which they've used to multiple products. if you google hp touch or hp touchsmart you'll see what i mean.

whether or not the name becomes recognizable and successful has everything to do with execution. i wouldn't be so quick to pass judgment until the deed is done. we in america have a tendency to be armchair quarterbacks, but actually executing and executing well is not an easy task.

apple's focus on the letter i has been very successful not because of the word i alone, but also their execution and their ability to capitalize on the me-centric world we currently live in. it's a great ego feed accompanied by really good execution. it's a good formula.

what HP is doing, if i were to guess, is trying to become known as the company that brings touch to everyone else. their touchsmart line is somewhat successful, still limited by what can be done on top of what amounts to a legacy OS, windows. with webOS they seem to be making a huge bet and putting a lot of faith in the OS, that it will finally allow all the products to sing.

i guess we'll see soon enough come february! either way, though, we have to be pretty excited to see so much innovation and incredible growth from all parties involved with this new space.

To sum, I've heard two good arguments:

A) The "Touch" in the naming convention is meant to align the product with other HP "Touch" products and leverage existing product awareness.

B) "Touchpad" is the larger version of the "Touchstone"

In the leaked render image we see HP Palm, so the idea that the device wouldnt have Palm in its name makes no sense. Touchpad being a larger touchstone makes much more sense.

Stick to palmpad. It's catchy


We are just days from Microsoft filing against Apples trademarking of the term "App Store", and now HP is trying to trademark something as common as "TouchPad"?

Sorry, but if there is a Wikipedia page (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Touchpad) for the term, you can't trademark it.

Grow a pair of marketing people HP, come on...

See alot of people don't really understand this MS VS AAPL lawsuit. HP Touchpad is not generic as Apple App Store. For example, The Touchpad is a product name, and I highly doubt others would try and brand their product as such, unless it was Apple itself (see iPhone, iPad name debacles).

The App Store is in itself too generic, as even Jobs himself has referred to his competition's ecosystems as 'app stores' and it is an actually store for 'apps'. Apple neither has a trademark on the word App, and it would be able to sue people for what is essentially colloquial usage of the phrase.

It would be like me, as a grocer, naming my brand, Food Store. It is way too generic, and MS probably has a strong case. We'll have to see how it plays out though

I disagree, there are millions of laptops out there with "touchpads" already on them...

am I the only onee who thinks "Palm" could be a perfect name for a product and not a brand?

I want the next hp flagship smartphone to be named "Palm" (or TouchPalm if we keep with the touch-naming trend)

So it can be like this:

hp TouchSmart (pc/laptop-tablet)
hp TouchPad (slate)
hp TouchPalm (smartphone)

either that or name the next smartphone simply "hp Palm" (palm being the name of the product not it's brand)

I say bring back the "Palm Pilot" name.

Does anyone else remember the furor from apple fanboys when the iPad name was announced? I'm with the minority here, but I think the Palm name is dead. Hearing PalmPad just sounds outdated to me. TouchPad is the future! & that's coming from someone who really needs a compelling reason to buy one!

I still think the best name for the post-merger 'slablet' is the HP Post. Post Palm, post iPad as in they are in the past. You can use it to post a note, post an email, or social network message. It also fits with the 'Beyond' as in post current devices. Unfortunately the way they've lolligagged in releasing it, it will also probably end up being post-apocalyptic. Sigh

I like touchpad. Seems to have a more professional feel to it. Palmpad doesnt have a catchy ring to it for somereason.

I doubt the touchpad will be the charging dock. It doesnt make sence... "hey, touch this pad... er charge dock. Why? I dont know, cause i said to touch it!" Makes no sence.

That's how it's gonna be, no more Palm. After the purchase of Palm by HP, it was Palm, then HP Palm and HP webOS and soon it's gonna be just HP Touchpad/HP webOS/HP Touchstone/HP webOS Phone.

That is the process involved in purchasing another company. Soon Palm (Handspring?) will be only remembered as the company that lead the future to smartphones.

Maybe the guys from Handspring will pick up the Palm brand? I really like the Palm logo and brand name, I hope it doesn't fade.

Well, HP did buy the entire company, the software, and the brand. They have every right to do whatever they feel will be most effective in the market. Personally, I have no attachment to the Palm name. My attachment is to WebOS, and I encourage HP to do whatever they can to drive market penetration for WebOS. If that means HP branding instead of Palm, so be it.

Hmm, I'm not sure how they can trademark "TouchPad" unless they are actually trademarking both words together, as in "HP TouchPad." The term "touchpad" has been in wide use for a long time, referring to the touch-pointing device on laptops. Not only that, HP's trademark application is WAAAY too broad, and could easily be used to stifle the use of the word for said pointing device. Given the similarity in the market arena of a touchscreen computer to a touch-based computer interface device, I seriously hope the USPTO recognizes that the term is generic and already in wide use, and thus not eligible for trademark by itself. Otherwise, I can see a big legal challenge coming from Synaptics.

I like PalmPad more. If they want to stay with the Touch series then at least call it the TouchTab not TouchPad. I used to sell computers and all I heard was Touch Pad or Track Pad for the mouse.