Apple can’t stop watchmaker Swatch from attempting to trademark Steve Jobs’ icon “One more thing” phrase, UK’s Judge Ian Purvis has ruled, according to AppleInsider.
He added that a previous court decision that “Swatch’s intentions had stepped over the line between the appropriate and inappropriate use of a trade mark” was wrong.
The “One more thing” phrase probably originated with fictional TV detective Columbo (pictured), and not Jobs, Purvis noted.
In 2019 Apple tried to stop Swatch from using the phrase, arguing it was synonymous with the late CEO. The tech argued at an Australian Trade Marks Office hearing that Swatch should not be allowed to use its trademark over the phrase, and in turn applied for its own Australian trademark over the term.
However, hearing officer Adrian Richards ruled against Apple and ordered it to pay Swatch’s legal costs. Jobs would often use the term in his keynote speeches to announce new Apple products, saving the best for last as he prepared to introduce “one more thing.”
This isn’t the first legal battle between Apple and Watch over a famous phrase. In 2017, Apple sued Swatch for its “Tick different” ad campaign, which the Cupertino, California-based company said was a rip-off of its former “Think different” campaign. But a Swiss court has backed the watchmaker.
Australia’s Federal Administrative Court agreed, saying Apple hadn’t produced documents that sufficiently backed up its case, reported Reuters. Responding to Apple’s accusations two years ago, Swatch CEO Nick Hayek said any similarity between the two campaigns is coincidental. Hayek asserts “Tick different” has its roots in a Swatch campaign from the ’80s that carried the phrase “Always different, always new.”
Speaking of detective Columbo, he was played primarily by actor Peter Falk from 1968-2003. The character was created by Richard Levinson and William Link, who said that Columbo was partially inspired by the “Crime and Punishment” character Porfiry Petrovich as well as G. K. Chesterton’s humble cleric-detective Father Brown.