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Apple & TIBCO Reportedly Settle Over Rendezvous; Welcome To OpenTalk

Apple & TIBCO Reportedly Settle Over Rendezvous; Welcome To OpenTalk

by , 5:15 PM EDT, July 22nd, 2004

Apple has reportedly settled a lawsuit with TIBCO over the use of the name "Rendezvous" for Apple's implementation of the ZeroConf networking protocol. The lawsuit was filed in August of 2003, with TIBCO accusing Apple of knowing that the name was already in use for a networking-related product.

In a statement from TIBCO at the time the lawsuit was filed, George Ahn, chief marketing officer for the company said, "Rendezvous has been a TIBCO mark for many years and is one of our flagship products. For quite some time we have tried to reach an amicable agreement but, given Apple's continual refusal to honor our trademark, we have been forced to take action."

Apple uses Rendezvous in its network printing, file sharing, iTunes, iChat, and other networking uses, but TIBCO claimed a trademark on the name for its own networking technology designed for the Enterprise space. TIBCO introduced its Rendezvous product in 1994, while Apple introduced its Rendezvous in 2002.

In October of 2003, TMO reported that TIBCO had also gone after developers overseas who were using the Rendezvous name in relation to Mac products using Apple's technology.

AppleInsider first reported the settlement yesterday, and both AppleInsider and eWEEK are reporting today that terms of the settlement have not been made public, and that Apple will be phasing out its use of Rendezvous. From eWEEK:

A representative of TIBCO Software Inc., based in Palo Alto, Calif., told eWEEK.com that the suit had been "amicably resolved" but declined to comment further. An Apple Computer Inc. representative declined to comment. Details of the agreement have not been made public.

eWEEK also reports that Apple has applied for a trademark on "OpenTalk" that might be Apple's new name for the technology. The description in the trademark application is very similar to Rendezvous's use. Check out either of the above articles for more information.

As of now, Apple's Rendezvous Web site is still up and active.

The Mac Observer Spin:

It's not too surprising that Apple settled with TIBCO. As we said back in August, the facts seemed to support TIBCO's claims. Apple has a history now of using names already in use, such as FairPlay, and for a company that is quick to jump on anyone treading on its own trademarks and trade dress, it's ironic for Apple not to put more effort in not stepping on someone else's toes. TIBCO seems to have successfully stepped back, though that is strictly our interpretation of the situation.

On to better things, OpenTalk is an interesting choice for a replacement name, assuming that ends up being the case. It harkens back to AppleTalk, Apple's networking technology from the early days of personal computers. It's also an appropriate name in that Apple has made its implementation of this technology, which itself is based on the open source ZeroConf protocol, open source for both Mac and Windows. OpenTalk for an open source networking protocol. We like it.

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