It must really suck to be the person in charge of securing trademarks for Apple right now. Apparently, Apple thought that it had the trademark for the iPad name in China. Or at least it thought its team of legal ninjas could beat down the Chinese opposition that owned the trademark. In either case, Apple was wrong.
A company in China has had the iPad trademark since 2000. The company is called Proview Technologies and it actually sold the rights to iPad to another firm for the UK and other countries. That company then sold it to Apple. The problem was that apparently Chinese rights weren’t part of the original sale.
That means that Apple has been peddling the iPad in violation of the trademark in China for a while now. China is booming and important to most tech firms so Apple can’t just walk away. Proview is apparently looking for (imagine Dr. Evil as you read this next part) a billion dollars. Will Apple have to change its tablet’s name in China or pay up big time? That remains to be seen.