Why is Apple removing the ‘I’ letter from its devices?

Since the release of the first iMac in 1990, the letter ‘I’ has been representing Apple until today. From iPhone to iPad, ‘i’ has been added. With the success of iMac, the company has named 30 products with its various hardware and software following the letter ‘i’.

But as you may have noticed, Apple’s latest products have come without the letter ‘I’. Like; The company did not bring iWatch as a smartwatch, ITV as a TV or iVision Pro as a VR headset.

But ‘I’ is only one letter. However, the way it is connected with Apple, people are also calling Apple Watch as ‘iWatch’.

The latest example of the company putting the letter ‘i’ as a prefix (joined before the name) in each of its products is iCloud and IAD, released in 2011. Similarly, in terms of hardware devices, Apple has not used ‘i’ as a prefix since it introduced the iPad in 2010.

When did Apple start removing the ‘I’?

It could be just a coincidence. However, iPad is the last product released by Steve Jobs. Steve Jobs was very fond of the letter ‘I’. He was the one who thought that Apple should start the name of its products with the letter ‘I’. However, after his death in 2011, the company did not name the new product with the letter ‘I’.

Speaking to Wired, Ken Segal, the company’s head of marketing, said that people are interested in Apple products because of the iMac and the letter ‘i’ attached to it. He is of the opinion that it has been carrying on the legacy of Apple for decades.

“Now we have to get rid of ‘I’,” he said, “now it has no meaning.” According to him, in the beginning, only Apple has been using the letter ‘i’, but recently many companies have been using it.

However, the meaning of the letter ‘I’ in iMac is becoming irrelevant over time. When the iMac was first released, internet connectivity was its most important feature.

The role of iMac is important in bringing revolution in the field of Internet. However, recently the Internet has become a common topic. Internet connectivity has started to be available in more common devices than usual. Therefore, he argues that the meaning that iMac’s ‘I’ carried is not relevant now.

According to Segal, it is not possible to get the trademark of ‘I’ now. Since there is no trademark, it cannot be protected. That is why Apple is gradually removing this letter, he said.

The first time this product was removed was Apple’s ‘i’.

In 2006, Apple announced the television set-top box. At that time it was called ITV. However, this name did not last long. Before launching the product, Apple changed the name ‘Apple TV’ by removing the letter I and launched the product. At that time, a company called ITV had been operating in Britain for five decades. The company changed the name after naming the TV set-top box ITV would lead to legal trouble.

Apple doesn’t really care if someone has already used the name they want. However, the company had to struggle to integrate the letter ‘I’ into the name of the iPad. For this, Apple had to fight a legal battle for the trademark for almost seven years. In the beginning, the company bought this name from a company called Fujitsu.

However, a complaint has also been filed for Apple’s Vision Pro. The company has to settle this matter before it goes public in China.

The future of ‘I’

However, if a name carries the legacy of the company, it is not so easy to remove the name quickly. That too for the biggest brand in history. “However, the company cannot maintain it for a long time,” Segal said, “Companies related to topics such as the Internet and innovation are using the letter ‘I’ in their own way.”

According to Segal, more caution should be taken when naming products than before. Because Apple had to face a big risk in 2006 when it replaced the ‘PowerBook’ with the MacBook. Therefore, Apple is careful not to repeat such incidents.

But Apple’s iPhone is one of the most successful products in history. Apple can also change its name, but it needs a good reason. He said that he could not remove this letter from the Apple iPhone because the “I” is not more important than before.

Even now, Apple continues to provide iPhone, iPad, iMac, iCloud and iMessage. However, the company has removed iPod, iSight, iBook (Apple’s laptop).

The company has named iBook as Apple Book. It has also replaced iTools, iDisk, iWeb, iChat and iSync. In addition, Apple is in the race to replace iTunes. Now the company is giving priority to its streaming service Apple Music. The service previously called iPhotos is now only Photos.

In this way, the company is slowly displacing the letter ‘i’, Segal said.

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