Soooo much fuss about the new Apple iPhone. There’s just one problem. It may not even end up being called the iPhone in the first place.

Turns out that the iPhone name is already in use by Cisco for its VoIP phones. So we’re up for some heavy legal wrangling between these two tech giants.

Moral of the story? Apple should trademark anything and everything that can come with an i. Such as:

  • The iDrive (Apple’s iTunes-souped car dashboard… after a bitter legal battle with carmaker BMW, that is)
  • The iWear (possibly sunglasses that serve as Bluetooth display devices for iPods… after a bitter legal battle with accessories-maker ezGear, that is)
  • The iBelt (possibly a multi-purpose connector/accessory that powers all sorts of Pod products… after a bitter legal battle with the Korean Kwang il industrial belt, that is)

Hmmm. Not as easy as it seems. Turns out that you can name practically any tech-related word in the English language, and chances are that somebody’s already trademarked that word with an i attached to it.

!podLet’s face it, the i prefix is already way too overused. So good luck to Apple (who have also incidentally just changed their name from Apple Computers to just Apple in preparation for their flooding the market with even more consumer-oriented products) because it’s going to be extremely hard for them to think of new, catchy names now that practically everything already comes with an i prefix attached.

My advice? Hey Apple, you’re a trendsetter. And there are still some 20-something letters in the alphabet that you can still avail of (keeping in mind that e is already tired and k is already too commercialized). Isn’t it about time that you jumped ship on the tired i and moved on to something else? Choose a letter that would be the next big thing, and then swamp the market with trademarks for everything that you’d want to prefix with it!

For instance…

  • Apple takes over the letter M! From now on, Apple’s iPod shall be known as the mPod. Coming soon: the mUlator, the mPhasizer, and the mPostor!
  • Apple takes over the letter G! From now on, Apple’s iPod shall be known as the gPod. Coming soon: the gDrive, the gWiz, and the gSpot!
  • Apple takes over the !! From now on, Apple’s iPod shall be known as the !Pod. Coming soon: the !Phone, the !Book, and the !! (note: the ! is pronounced with a loud, clucking sound).

Don’t say I didn’t warn you, Apple, but you’re gonna have a heckuva hard time rolling out more consumer products with a seamless branding strategy if you stick with your i regime. Me? I actually prefer the !