A Tokyo based company Emonster kk has sued Apple Inc. after it claimed that the tech giant had stolen of their feature animoji and has incorporated the feature in its upcoming iPhone X phone. The lawsuit was filed late Wednesday in a U.S court with Emonster kk claiming that Apple had infringed on their trademark.
The animoji is a feature found in iPhone X that allows the users to change and animate the facial expressions of the emojis found on the phone. This feature was one of the features that were discussed in-depth during the launching event of the phone back in September. iPhone X is set to be released by next month.
According to Apple’s chief marketing officer, Phil Schiller, the feature is a phenomenal addition. According to the lawsuit, Emonster kk’s CEO, Enrique Bonansea launched animoji as a texting app three years ago, with the name being a registered trademark ever since. The lawsuit further stated that Apple Inc. cannot deny knowledge of this as the app is can be downloaded on their App store. “Apple decided to take the name and pretend to the world that ‘Animoji’ was original to Apple,” Emonster said in the complaint. Damages will have to be paid for the trademark infringement even though Emonster havent specified how much they will settle for.
The price of the new iPhone X ($999) is a chance for the company to present something valuable to the smartphone market after falling behind over the past few years. Other smartphones, notably Android devices have been unveiling new features in their devices and this has left Apple with a huge gap to cover. They have made steps to cover for it with the new iPhone X set to feature wireless charging, an infrared camera, and hardware for facial recognition, and the now controversial animoji.
The outcome of the case is going to be very interesting because if the facts that Emonster kk are true, then Apple Inc. will face a penalty. Emonster kk had suggested that Apple should be suspended from using the feature pending the decision of the court.