Bad news for Microsoft and its SkyDrive brand name, as a new report revealed today indicated that Microsoft had lost a trademark case against British Sky Broadcasting Group. This Group goes by the name Sky and the group had filed a complaint against Microsoft alleging that the SkyDrive name was a trademark infringement against the Sky brand.
This ruling is from a British court and states that Microsoft's SkyDrive does in fact infringe on Sky's trademarks in both the United Kingdom and the European Union. According to the judge, Mrs Justice Asplin, Microsoft's use of SkyDrive was likely to cause confusion amongst consumers and that the use of SkyDrive was detrimental to the Sky name, which amounts to a trademark infringement.
The best case scenario is that Microsoft wins an appeal against Sky. The worst case scenario is Microsoft completely drops the SkyDrive name and re-brands the service or even pays Sky royalties to continue using the SkyDrive name. This isn't the first time Microsoft went all out with a brand name only to change it. Remember the Metro name? Microsoft had to cease using that name thanks to a lawsuit from a group called "Metro AG."
"Sky is pleased with the judgment handed down today by Mrs Justice Asplin. We regard any unauthorized use of the Sky name as a clear infringement of our well-established Sky brand. We remain vigilant in protecting the Sky brand and will continue to take appropriate action against those companies that seek to use our trademarks without consent," Sky stated in an official statement.
Microsoft's response to this? "This case is only about the SkyDrive name and has nothing to do with service availability or future innovation. The decision is one step in the legal process and Microsoft intends to appeal," Microsoft stated. Let's see how this turns out.