Big News: Apple-Cisco iPhone Soap Opera Gets Extension


Business most often is not as interesting as a soap opera, but the seemingly indefatigable fascination with any product from Apple with the letter "i" in front of it is driving tabloid-like attention to Cisco's trademark suit over the name "iPhone."


The big news today -- so big that it's ranking at the top of Google News' Sci-Tech channel at the time of this posting -- is that the two firms have agreed to an extension for Apple to respond to Cisco's complaint over "iPhone," which Cisco came to own via an acquisition.


Really -- an extension for a first reply in a corporate lawsuit?


While the blogosphere is humming with speculation about what the agreement might portend -- aside from attorneys just needing a little more time to type -- sensible observers like Ars Technica note that the development probably isn't much of a development.


We'll go out on a limb and predict that Apple will in fact launch a mobile media/phone device called an iPhone (which, by the way, will do stuff that devices that have been on the market for months already do), and that Cisco will benefit from the use of that name in some fashion.


Ted Samson at InfoWorld notes that interoperability between Cisco gear -- think Wi-Fi, for starters -- and Apple consumer gadgets is the real issue at stake. Another example of how consumer tech is driving the industry.

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