The Delhi High Court passed an order (read a copy at Bar and Bench) on May 28 that restrained Asus Technology from advertising and selling its products — including laptops, phones and accessories — under the trademarks ZEN, ZENFONE, and other “deceptively similar” trademarks. The case was filed by Telecare Network India Pvt Ltd. The court directed Asus to stop using the trademarks within eight weeks. Asus has a range of mobile phones called ZENFONE and sells laptops under the name ZENBOOK. Telecare Network claimed that it was the owner of the trademarks ZEN and ZENMOBILE under the Trade Marks Act, 1999, and had been using them for feature phones, smartphones, tablets and accessories since 2008. It claimed that Asus had subsequently adopted a near-identical trademark ZENFONE to sell identical goods within a similar price range. This, Telecare Network claimed, was likely to cause confusion among customers as it suggested that the two were somehow associated. It argued that Asus adopted the ZEN and ZENFONE trademarks to ride on its goodwill and reputation. The company claimed that the essential feature of its trademark was "ZEN" and the addition of the suffix "FONE" was immaterial. 'ZEN' is a genetic term, Asus argued Asus's counsel said that Jonney Shih, who headed the company, was a staunch believer of the Zen philosophy and that "ZENFONE" was a reflection of this. Asus also said that it had already filed an application for the cancellation of Telecare Network’s registered trademark before the Intellectual Property Appellate…
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