Update: Asus has now given an official statement regarding the matter and it says that the supply, tech support and after sales service of ASUS smartphones, notebooks, and other product will remain unchanged for all consumers. Also, the next hearing of the case is on July 10.
Earlier: Asus has been temporarily banned from selling its Zenfone series products in India, i.e. its smartphones. This comes after an interim order from Delhi High Court that bans Asus from selling its smartphones that come with the ‘Zen’ branding.
As per the High Court order, Asus was found infringing on the ‘Zen’ trademark in India. It means that as of now Asus will temporarily not be able to sell its ZenFone series smartphones in India.
To be noted here that the company was planning to introduce its flagship Zenfone 6 in India very soon. So, what will happen to that launch? Will Zenfone series smartphone will be available in India after the order? Let’s know the details of all this.
Asus Smartphone Ban in India
What’s the matter?
As per the report by Bar & Bench, Asus is asked to halt the sales of its Zen branded smartphones in India. The company was found to infringe on the ‘Zen’ trademark which was initially filed by Telecare Network for its Android smartphones back in 2008.
While Asus introduced its Zenfone series of smartphones into the Indian market later in 2014. The company also introduced the ZenBook series of Windows ultrabooks later on. The ‘Zen’ part in the Asus products lineup led to confusion for the High Court as it is for the same product i.e. smartphones.
What does Delhi High Court say?
The Delhi High said, “the triple identity test is satisfied as the defendants have made use of a deceptively similar/identical trademark(ZENFONE) in relation to identical goods (mobile phones) having identical trade channels the defendants having adopted a deceptively similar mark wherein the dominant part of the defendant’s mark ZENFONE is the plaintiff’s mark ZEN, for the same product i.e. mobile phones, shows prima facie that there is a likelihood of confusion and damage to the plaintiff’s goodwill.”
It further added, “Consequently the defendants (Asus) having adopted a deceptively similar mark wherein the dominant part of the defendant’s mark ZenFone is the plaintiff’s (Telecare) mark Zen, for the same product i.e. mobile phones, shows prima facie that there is a likelihood of confusion and damage to the plaintiff’s goodwill.”
What does Asus say?
Asus has said in its defense that the Zen branding on its products doesn’t lead to any confusion as it comes from the renowned trademark of Asus registered globally. However, Telecare Network contended that similar names of the same product may cause confusion for the customers.
The company now gives an official statement- “The ASUS legal team is currently working with the Delhi High Court in India to resolve the Zen Mobiles and ZenFone trademark lawsuit. The supply of ASUS smartphones, notebooks, and other products, as well as technical support and after-sales service for all ASUS products, remain unchanged for all consumers.”
Asus has been asked to halt sales of all its products that carry the ‘Zen’ branding from immediate effect. It is to be noted that the court order is interim and Asus can go back to the Court with a valid solution to get the ban lifted. It will be interesting to see whether the Court order affects the launch of Zenfone 6 in the country. It could be delayed until the next hearing for the case which is scheduled for July 10.