There are a number of different application market names spread across all of the platforms around, but one of the longest-running storefronts may soon have to change its name. On January 10th, Microsoft filed an opposition asking the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to deny Apple the trademark for the term "App Store," claiming that it's too generic and has forced competitors to rethink references to their own stores. The company used Steve Jobs' own words from 2008 against him, when Jobs was quoted as saying "Amazon, Verizon and Vodafone have all announced that they are creating their own app stores for Android" when Apple originally applied for the App Store trademark. The full statement from Microsoft on the situation is as follows:
"'App store' is a generic name that Apple should not be permitted to usurp for its exclusive use. Competitors should be free to use 'app store' to identify their own stores and the services offered in conjunction with those stores."
I kind of agree with Microsoft in this situation, because "app" and "store" are both pretty generic terms, and they seem to become even more generic when combined. Then again, there are a number of other storefronts that use the same terms or ones that are similar to others: App World, App Catalog, Android Market, Windows Marketplace, Ovi Store. It's tough to guess how the USPTO will respond, but you can expect that Apple is going to do all they can to keep the term "App Store" in their camp.