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Why Amazon could not register its virtual assistant Alex in Chile

Alexa, the famous voice assistant of Amazons and one of Jeff Bezos's most popular devices, has problems with coming to Chile after the Supreme Court refused to register his name in the country to match the registered trademark for the other company.

In January 2016, Amazon started the process of registering Alexa in Chile but in the first case the registration of the brand could not have been made because the German audiovisual company Arnold & Richter Cine Technik had already registered the name "Alexa".

Although the company is dedicated to the production of cameras, and in other countries, both brands live without problems, in Chile, according to Esteban Figuero, National Director of Industrial Property (Inapi) for La Tercera, can not be registered in the same way. "Alexa" is the time of Amazons and "Alexa" Arnold and Richter because it would create a risk of confusion for consumers who might believe that products or services come from the same company or affiliated company.

"Brand brand analysis is carried out case-by-case, taking into account not only the similarity of brands, but also the products or services that distinguish the previously registered brand," he explains. "Similarly, it can not be compared to the analysis conducted by other countries, since the law in Chile and practice differ from country to country and consequently only affect what it is trying to register within the national territory."


In Chile, the National Institute for Industrial Property is a public body that carries out the functions of registering, managing and implementing industrial property policy. That is, where companies need to register their commercial brands.

According to Inap, the procedure Registering a stamp in Chile basically consists of three phases: entry and formal examination of the application, processing of the statement in the Official Gazette and examination of the merits of the application.

The first step is the presentation of the appropriate application, which must require the protection of products, services, commercial objects, industrial objects or propaganda phrases. A formal exam is made from this application check whether the legal and regulatory requirements are met. Once the formal examination has been approved, the application must be published in the Official Gazette, so that third parties may object to the claim if they consider that they have a better right. Whether it was opposition or not, Inapi conducts a substantive examination to make sure that the trademark application does not violate any legal grounds for non-registration. Once the application approves this substantive test, National Director Inapi assigns an administrative resolution that assigns the label and subsequent registration of the label. If a trademark application is rejected, there is a possibility of appeal to that decision before the Industrial Property Court.

And this is exactly what Amazon did.

However, before this instance He also denied his request to use the name Alex. Faced with this, Bezos complained to the Supreme Court, where your request is rejected again. Faced with this, meAn American company filed an appeal in December, even using a letter from Arnold and Richter where it gave its consent, explaining that on both international markets, both companies have co-existed with the name "Alexa". Despite this, the Supreme Court has not ruled in favor of Bezos, which leaves Amazon to be unable to use Alexa's registration technology in Chile. An alternative would be to change the name of the voice assistant, but it would not change anything like "Alecsa", since it also takes into account that they represent a graphic or phonetic similarity to the trademark or the previously requested.

Currently, large business companies such as Google and Apple have their own voice assistants with voice commands to call them ("Ok Google" and "Hey Siri"). In the case of Amazon, calling from "Alexa" allows you to consult on time, buy, ask about traffic conditions, create routines, send video calls, and dictate and send text messages, among many other features.

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