Do you use an ASUS smartphone? Is your smartphone a part of the ‘ZenFone’ series of ASUS? If yes, then there is some bad news for all the ZenFone users, that is, Delhi High Court has banned all such smartphone models in India.
The company, ASUS, which has been operating in India since 2014, is known for producing smartphones which match with its competitors Xiaomi and Samsung. It is also known for its particularly affordable ZenFone series of smartphones (the smartphones which is used to compete with the Xiaomi products).
But sadly this series of smartphones has been banned by the Delhi High Court. Why? This is a result of a major case of trademark infringement.
Telecare Network is a local smartphone-maker, which had registered trademarks for ZEN and ZEN MOBILE back in 1999. It has been selling feature phones, smartphones, and tablets under the brand since 2008, the year when ASUS even started its operations in India.
Telecare Network has accused ASUS of use of the term ‘ZenFone’ as an infringement on its trademarks – ‘ZEN’ and ‘ZEN MOBILE’. They filed a lawsuit in the Delhi HC, claiming that the use of the same name has been hurting their brand.
ASUS in response claimed that the word ‘ZEN’ is pretty generic in Buddhist philosophy, but the court rejected that remark, noting that it is not generic enough to be associated with smartphones, tablets – especially in India.
The High Court found the Telecare’s claims reasonable and issued an interim order banning ASUS from selling ZenFone – branded phones, tablets or accessories starting July 25.
Though the ban is a part of an interim order, if ASUS fails to defend the use of the word ‘ZenFone’, the company might be permanently banned from using it.
All of ASUS’s India operations will be greatly affected and could also disrupt the sale of Zen-branded smartphones, tablets, and even laptops, aka ZenBooks.
All the impact made by ASUS in the Indian tech market will be lost after this ban. The brand had been a notable competitor for Xiaomi, Samsung and all top smartphone brands.