Apple made the world stop on January 27 when Steve Jobs announced the newest gadget in its already long line of toys: the iPad. This tablet computer is being touted as the next gadget that will change the way we perceive things. Much like when the iPhone was launched, the unveiling of the iPad has got the whole world a-buzzing.
Japan’s Fujitsu, however, is quick to speak up. Apparently, they have been using the term iPad to call a gadget that they launched as early as 2002. If this is true, then Apple might have to deal with a trademark issue in the coming months.
The official word is that the Fujitsu subsidiary in the United States launched their own iPad in 2002. The Fujitsu iPad is a small handheld gadget that is targeted at stores. Its purpose is to keep track of inventory, to scan barcodes, and other similar activities that store clerks may have to do. Inside the Fujitsu iPad, there is an Intel processor. It runs on Microsoft (big difference!). The gadget’s screen is 3.5 inches and has Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity.
The positive thing – at least for Apple – is that the trademark application has not yet been approved. However, Fujitsu applied for the patent in 2003, definitely giving it an edge. The company has not made any announcement as to what their next move will be though. The official word is that they are “sorting out the facts.” As for Apple, they are no strangers to this sort of thing.