NEWS : Apple accused of ripping off Swiss Federal Railway service clock design

Well. We all know about the famous Swiss Federal Railway (SBB) clock and its more retail manifestation in Mondaine, but apparently Apple doesn’t. The new look of their iPad clock which came with iOS6 bears, as you can see, a suspiciously close similarity to the Swiss clock design, as first reported by Swiss newspaper Tages-Anzeiger. Needless to say the SBB, who own the 1944 designed trademark (and who have licensed it to Mondaine), are unimpressed, as Apple did not seek authorisation to use it. It is understood that a formal legal complaint is already being drafted to send to Apple.

It’s not as though the fruitphone makers aren’t in enough strife already – their mapping software on the new iphone have been nothing but a shambles, enough to generate its own meme and even a dedicated tumblr.

But have no fear; despite having spent countless millions of dollars and hours on its development, Apple are hearing your distress calls from the flattened Eiffel Tower and are responding. They are now hiring developers to work on iOS 6 Maps.

Perhaps they can get someone to check trademarks, as well.

UPDATE (13 October 2012) Apple has struck a deal to use Swiss railway operator SBB to use its trademark clock design on iPads and iPhones under a licence agreement. The cost of the licensing fee and further detail of the  agreement will remain confidential. Mondaine, who have held the exclusive licence since 1986 to make clocks and wristwatches for based on the design, said it was not involved in the SBB deal.

UPDATE (11 November 2012) The amount that Apple has paid to SBB? A 20 million CHF lump sum payment, according to media reports.

Categories: Clocks, Mondaine, News, Switzerland, watches

1 reply

  1. I’m not sure which is worse, the incompetence of shipping broken mapping software or this blatant theft (so ironic after the recent Apple/Samsung court cases). Both certainly illustrate Apples supreme arrogance as a company.


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