Japanese Firm Claims to have Patented Animoji – Files a Lawsuit against Apple


Apple is facing a lawsuit for using a Japanese software company’s trademark term. Yes, the Tokyo-based company, Emonster has filed a case against Apple Inc. in the US federal court. Accordingly, Emonster has already registered the trademark name, ‘Animoji’ back in 2015. Contrarily, the recently launched Apple iPhone X also carries the same name for one of its feature.

What’s with this Animoji?

Emonster’s Animoji is a messaging app. It allows its users to send emojis in the form an animated-loop-like GIFs. To send the Animoji, users need to create a message in the form of code in Python or Javascript. The codes usually consist brackets and other parentheses to separate the emojis from the text. This iOS messaging app is available in the Apple store for the cost of $0.99.

Meanwhile, the Animoji in Apple iPhone X is a well-known feature that transforms facial expressions into emojis. This is done by the face recognition technology of the device complimented by its TrueDepth camera. It is capable of capturing 50 different facial muscle movements; and then animates the captured expression into the Animoji, such as panda, robot, and unicorn.

The Animoji feature in the iPhone X has received a great attention from the people, which is now stuck with this allegation. Well, the Emonster’s CEO, Enrique Bonansea says that Apple has decided to steal their trademark name with full knowledge; as they couldn’t be unaware of an app in the Apple Store.

Multiple Legal Proceedings

While the Emonster’s lawsuit against Apple Inc. has propagated shockwaves in the industry, there seems to be another legal proceeding initiated by Apple. Yes, Apple has forwarded a petition about a month ago, to take down the trademark of Emonster, on ‘Animoji’. They reasoned that Emonster has registered the trademark to a non-existent business.

Therefore, the trademark is also under review as of now. Moreover, it is also said that Apple previously offered to buy the trademark from Emonster, but it ended up in a no deal. Anyway, being such huge and reputed organization, Apple should have respected the law. What do you think? Let us know your views, through comments below.