Swatch Group and Apple Inc. are set to clash in court again, this time over the phrasing of a marketing slogan.
A case was lodged by Apple last week with the Swiss Federal Administrative Court claiming that Swatch’s use of the term “Tick Different” on some of its watches could be confused with the “Think Different” message used by the tech giant during the 1990s.
Swatch Group CEO Nick Hayek is quoted by Swiss business news site Watson that any similarity between the two messages is a coincidence. He adds that the term “Tick Different dates back to an even earlier Swatch campaign from the 1980s that used the phrase “Always different, always new”.
Swatch has so far used the words Tick Different only on its Bellamy range of watches that have built-in NFC communication for Visa payments.
The latest legal dispute follows a legal victory for Swatch Group last year when it prevented Apple from claiming ownership of the name iWatch.
The case heard by a UK court in September 2016 upheld Swatch’s opposition to Apple’s ‘iWatch’ trade mark application for products that Apple wanted to protect.
Swatch filed the opposition in March 2014 after Apple applied to protect the name ‘iWatch’ as a trade mark. The opposition was based on Swatch’s concern that the ‘iWatch’ name was too similar to its own ‘iSwatch’ trade mark, which is used on a Swatch watch.
Apple said at the time that it would appeal the decision because the preface of ‘i’ is widely understood as a naming convention of Apple products.