Taiwanese brand Asus has run into legal trademark complications in India this week, forcing them to stop selling products that are branded as either Zen or Zenfone, as highlighted in this Bar and Bench report.
The order has been passed by the Delhi High Court on Tuesday, after a suit for infringement and passing off filed by Telecare Network India Pvt Ltd against Asus.
Telecare Network has claimed that it has registered for use of the Zen and Zenmobile branding under the Trade Marks Act, 1999 and has been using them for its feature phone, smartphone and tablets since 2008.
Voicing its concern about Asus using the branding Zen and selling its devices under the Zenfone brand, apparently has caused confusion for buyers, as claimed by the plaintiff, which is Telecare Network in this case.
Telecare Network has also said that both Asus and its branded phones are sold in the same price category, which in someways has hurt its own business, the order cited.
Responding to these allegations, Asus said that the use of brand Zen was spearheaded by Jonney Shih, who was a staunch believer of the ancient Zen Philosophy and that the mark ZENFONE was a reflection of the same.
Hearing the case from both the parties, the Delhi HC restrained Asus from selling or marketing devices with mention of Zen or Zenfone. This order came into effect from 28 May onwards.
Asus sells most of its devices in the country which use the word Zen in their branding. Be it laptops or smartphones, all products come under the purview of this order.
However, easing concern of its existing users, Asus officially shared this statement, telling them supply of all its products and other support will continue.
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 India Statement to The Quint
The matter will be next heard on 10 July, when both the parties will stake claim for their case of using the brand Zen for their respective products.