apple's "the new iPad" title for the third tablet be the result of Proview?
If you have been reading our previous issues
over the past few months, you may be aware of our coverage of Apple's legal battle
with Proview over the iPad title/name. Proview claims copyrights to the title because
Apple didn't buy the rights from the branch of the company responsible for it. Apple,
on the other hand, claims it has the rights to the title and bought it
The legal battle has played out mostly
in Taiwanese and Chinese courts, but reports indicate it will be heading to United
States civil courts as well. Apple's event in San Francisco revealed that what
the media was calling iPad 3 has actually been named "The New iPad".
Could this be the result of this legal dispute? Apple may not want to give any more
money to Proview or risk potential copyright payouts in the future if Proview succeeds
in the court battles ahead.
What does this mean for? The title of
"The New iPad" doesn't seem very marketable in today's electronic environment.
Usually, titles for gadgets have to be short, precise, and catchy to really capture
the audience. Take the Vita, or 3DS for example. These titles are very short
titles with only a couple of syllables each.
Some tablets actually have longer names
in an attempt to distinguish themselves from the rest of the competition. The Nook
Color has two separate words in its title as well as the Kindle Fire. However, Apple
has usually been known to place only one word in its titles. Just look at examples
of iDevices: iPhone, iPad, iPod. The iPod Touch does have two words in its
title, but it has to.
How else would it distinguish itself
from the older iPod that is a part of its product line?
The idea of brand titles being
influential on marketing and the success of a product is a very interesting
discussion. You may be aware of our previous story, called "Unboxing,"
about Apple's packaging experts taking great care and resources to find the perfect
boxes (along with other packaging) to fit Apple products. The name of a product
should have just as much of an influence on consumers than attractive packaging.
There has been some recent news regarding
the Proview and Apple situation since we last covered this story.
After the recent Apple press event announcing
the third iPad model, Proview is calling on Chinese dealers to stop selling iPads
altogether. The company doesn't want any iPad models to be found in retail in
According to Ventura County Star, the demand
to stop the distribution of the iPad product lineup has been issued by Proview
in an open letter. The letter was sent out to Chinese vendors and dealers and
threatened them directly - and not just Apple. The threats were centered around
potential copyright lawsuits to the dealers and vendors. Surprisingly, even potential
"criminal" liability was mentioned.
As you can see, this is a very serious
issue that will probably not go away anytime soon. Proview and Apple will continue
to battle it out in international courts for the iPad title. Not many companies
were able to take Apple head-on like this and succeed, but it seems Proview is
going after vendors and other small-timers not related to Apple. This strategy
may have different implications than Samsung's copyright battle with Apple.
Why It Matters
The reason the title change should matter
to Apple and the industry as a whole is marketability. How marketable is a name
such as "The New iPad" when the product falls in line with previous
tablets of the brand. The changes for the third model were not that significant
to justify having such a title.
The Retina Display is a huge upgrade
for some users, but for others it is a small reason to purchase the tablet at
the premium price over previous models. The quad-core GPU in the A5X SOC is
another huge update, but only gamers will take advantage of the faster graphics
in the new model.
The software is what really needs to change
or Apple needs to rework some of its software to really distinguish itself from
previous iPad models and other iDevices. Because the form factor is pretty much
the same as the iPad 2, this might be an arduous challenge for Apple to
Another reason why the new title matters
is because it is long and awkward to say. Imagine the next year's model being
called "The New iPad 2" or "The Next iPad." This sort of
naming may confuse customers as to exactly which model they own.
Another Possibility For The Title
Another possibility for why the iPad 3
is now called "The New iPad" is that Tim Cook simply wants to take
the iPad in a new direction. Calling it a "New iPad" will mean it is
separating itself from the previous models in features and functionality. However,
it still runs on the same operating system and outside of a few hardware upgrades,
it still looks and functions in the same manner as the previous models.
The idea of Tim Cook taking the iPad in
a new direction is realistic, though. The reason for this can be seen just by
looking at the upcoming Mountain Lion operating system from Apple. There will be
a lot of integration and iPad features in this Mac operating system. The word "Mac"
will be even missing from the title of the OS.
Does Tim Cook want to somehow integrate
the iPad with the Mac? Maybe he is testing the waters with Mountain Lion when his
real long-term vision will be to put the same OS on the Macbook and iPad. By
calling the device a "New iPad", it will distinguish itself from previous
models tied to iOS - and iPhone/iPod Touch along with it.
Apple has its work cut out in terms of
what to do with the iPad title as a whole. Has this been a launch of a new
product lineup and "The New iPad" is the first tablet in the new
lineup? Or will upcoming iPad models appear with different branding as well? Apple
is usually great about marketing a situation no matter which way it leads. Time
will tell whether they will somehow run with this name or be legally forced to
come up with a title not even mentioning "iPad."