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Court tells AT&T's Aio to put down the magenta in T-Mobile trademark case


Any interior decorator will tell you, there's a fine line between blush and bashful. Unfortunately for Aio Wireless, the same can't be said of plum and magenta -- at least not in a court of law. T-Mobile announced today that a Federal Court in Texas has ordered the AT&T subsidiary to stop using a "plum color as a central part of its trade dress," as it is "confusingly similar" to its own trademark magenta.

According to court documents, T-Mobile claims the Plum in question, Pantone 676C, is so similar to its own Pantone Process Magenta that it "dilutes its strength and likely causes confusion among consumers." The court's preliminary injunction will prevent Aio from using large swaths of the offending plum color and "confusingly similar shades" in advertising, marketing and store design.

T-Mobile brought the suit against the pre-paid carrier, which is owned by its competitor AT&T, last summer, just months after its initial launch. While the difference between plum and magenta may be evident to most, court documents show that AT&T's branding company raised concerns about the shade during a vetting process that included focuses groups and extensive consideration of other carriers' color schemes.

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