Microsoft is filing a motion with the US Patent and Trademark Office to prevent Apple from trademarking the expression “app store.” (Endgadget)Apple wants the ability to sue the pants off anyone else who uses the expression “app store” within the context of software generally — which includes myriad companies. Microsoft says the expression “app store” is much too generic to be trademarked. The word themselves are generic, and people have been using it the expression a general way to refer to the concept. In a nice zing, Microsoft uses as an example none other than Steve Jobs himself, who slammed the fragmentation of Google‘s Android by saying they have too many “app stores.”
Even though they’re clearly filing the motion for self-interested reasons, we have to agree with Microsoft here. Apple was early with the app store and clearly still has the better execution, but this is like Microsoft trying to trademark not just “Windows” but “operating system.” What’s more, European startup GetJar Networks has had a mobile app store since 2003.