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How did Motorola get away with calling their phone the "Droid"?

Discussion in 'Android Lounge' started by MisterB, Jan 7, 2010.

  1. MisterB

    MisterB Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    We all know the word "Droid" is short for Android, which is the software our phones run on this forum, whether they are made by Motorola, HTC, etc. Why is it that Motorola was able to take this name, and call their latest Android phone by that name?

    I think it is a little confusing, because sometimes when people see my phone and ask what it is, I'll tell them it is a Droid phone, but then they get a puzzled look and tell me they thought the Droid was more heavy and clunky with a slide out keyboard. Yeah, I can say "it is an Android phone", and I do that sometimes- but it is sort of annoying that Motorola took a nickname that already existed on other Android phones before its time, and called it their own.

    What's done is done, I suppose- but I'm just curious how Motorola was able to get around trademark and copyright issues, and why Google would allow this in the first place?

  2. Eaglesfan9106

    Eaglesfan9106 Android Enthusiast

    idk im still pissed off that it got 2.0 a month after the hero came came out eff the droid
  3. milrtime83

    milrtime83 Android Enthusiast

    Droid is actually copyrighted by Lucasfilm (Star Wars) and Motorola paid them to use the term.
  4. MisterB

    MisterB Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    That may be, but the definition of the word Android, is "a robot resembling a human being". The word "Droid", is simply short for that. It is like saying Mike instead of Michael. Same diff.
  5. samster

    samster Member

    Im thinking Verizon paid LucasFilm, not Moto, because all of VZW android phones bear the 'DROID' name (Droid, Droid Eris, Droid Devour, etc)
  6. milrtime83

    milrtime83 Android Enthusiast

    Yeah, I thought of that a while after I posted.
  7. MisterB

    MisterB Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    Good point. It's stupid. I don't think Google should have allowed this. We all have Droids. NOT JUST VERIZON USERS.
  8. Tuxas

    Tuxas Newbie

    Google doesn't own the term Droid so there is nothing for them to allow. It was Lucasfilm Ltd. that allowed this.

    From Verizonwireless.com

    DROID is a trademark of Lucasfilm Ltd. and its related companies. Used under license.
  9. sooper_droid12

    sooper_droid12 Android Expert

    No my friend, you have a HERO running the Android OS. When people see me in a coffee shop or something and ask me, "What kind of laptop do you have there?" I don't say, "It's an XP." Or, "It's a Vista." Or, "It's an X." I say, "It's a Dell," "It's a MacBook," etc. If I'm bold enough, I may say, "It's a MacBook Pro!" Or, "It's a Dell Inspiron."

    No wonder people are confused and perplexed by your answer. These devices have names.
  10. detroid

    detroid Member

    Unless you have a Motorola Droid then you shouldn't be saying you have a "Droid". You should be saying "I have an HTC Hero". You're just confusing people.
  11. sensesfail99

    sensesfail99 Android Enthusiast

    wow... cry me a river... are you really that stuck on "name brands"?
  12. Josh0187

    Josh0187 Member

    This post makes me giggle.


    Oh and BTW, I have a Droid =P bwahahaha

    Sorry, I just find it amazingly entertaining to hear bitching about a freaking name.

    Yeesh people, don't act like apple hippies and claim the name makes the device, damn.
  13. thecrazing

    thecrazing Member

    Yeah, this took me a while to parse. Are you saying that for a while now, you've been saying you have a 'Droid', but now that Verizon has started using using 'Droid' for their phones, people are confused?

    As others have mentioned, Verizon got away with it by paying LucasArts. That they had to do that at all is proof enough that it wasn't really a nickname that all the other phones had. I can imagine it was cool to say before the Droid line was announced, but, in truth, you were the one creating the confusion, not the other companies.
  14. mrthundercleese

    mrthundercleese Well-Known Member

    "Droid" is the "brand name" of android powered handsets for Verizons network. The first phone (Moto Droid) just doesn't have a surname. All Verizon devices are "Droids". At least, thats how it's supposed to work :).
  15. ekyle

    ekyle Android Expert

    Oh yea! I remember reading that in the fine print on the email I received when the Droid was first announced by VZW.
  16. n0gik

    n0gik Member

    Motorola just buys/aquires what they need to do business. Just like all business' has the ability to do. Some just have the 'moxy' (money) to get away with it. Push-To-Talk became a registered trademark (Nextel/Sprint), oddly, after existing for decades on pretty much ANYTHING two-way. Go figure. :)
  17. Eugene

    Eugene Android Expert

    Verizon licensed the Droid name not Motorola. The Motorola name is A855.
  18. FoFa

    FoFa Newbie

    I have a droid, too bad it is obsolete now it is 2 months old..... :rolleyes:
  19. mrthundercleese

    mrthundercleese Well-Known Member

    You should probably give up technology if you care about being "obsolete". This is the truth of technology my friend.
  20. MisterB

    MisterB Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    That's BS. Sorry. Verizon refers to the HTC Eris in advertising (which is almost identical to the Sprint HTC Hero), as a "Droid".
  21. MisterB

    MisterB Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    Oh, stop. The only bitching I see on here are folks bitching about bitching.:rolleyes:
  22. carlz28

    carlz28 Well-Known Member

    By stating that Verizon "got away" with the Droid name is a poor statement. As mentioned previously, they licensed it from LucasFilm. So there was no 'getting away' with anything. They paid, and paid a lot, I'd imagine for the right to use it.
    The really appaling thing to me is that Lucasfilm was able to copyright a word like Droid to begin with.
    I think I'm gonna copyright the newly created word "Ima-Dope" and anyone who EVER tries to use it without my permission will be heavily fined.:rolleyes:
  23. kutsushita

    kutsushita Member

    I decided not to read much of this thread for the obvious reasons but I would like to share one thing... hero... SPRINT hero... fml.
  24. Verio

    Verio Newbie

    I wont try and show too much of my Star Wars-esque geekiness, but in Star Wars, there are no "Androids". There is only Droids. The term "Droid" has been exclusively used by Star Wars since the movies released. LucasFilms was able to copyright that term, because they exclusively used it, before anyone else.

    Data from Star Trek isn't a "Droid", he's an "Android". Just because we live in a world where everything must be fast-food fed and shortened, doesn't mean "Droid" is now available. It's just like the word "Coke". Coca-Cola has that branded also.
  25. graymulligan

    graymulligan Newbie

    No...no you don't. You also don't have a Tivo, if it's a TIme Warner DVR. It's not Kleenex if the box says Puffs on it. The issue here is that you're confusing terminology that it appears that everyone else in this thread understands.

    Verizon licensed the term to use in its marketing of the Eris, the Motorola 855, etc. It's not really that confusing. An HTC Hero isn't a droid. Because HTC doesn't use the term to market it. Pretty simple really.

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