The audience, half filled with media were taken aback by the announcement knowing that Cisco held the rights to the trademark and was using it for one of its Linksys VoIP phone products. Many of us left the hall after the announcement wondering if some secret deal had been reached between Apple and Cisco.
In fact, it turns that discussions were being held between the two companies about Apple's use of the name but no agreement had been reached when Jobs made his announcement on January 9. Cisco subsequently filed a lawsuit on January 10.
Not many believe that Cisco really wants to sue a company which is both a large customer and whose board contains Eric Schmidt, the CEO of an even larger customer. The Linksys iPhone is simply not that big a deal for Cisco.
However, many believe that what Cisco really wants is a compatibility deal between the two companies concerning Apple's iPhone. If so, then Apple is obviously reluctant. Cisco, which originally gave Apple until February 1 to respond to its lawsuit, that was stretched out by a couple of weeks and now has been extended until February 21.
Apple is obviously playing hardball on this issue because it believes it can, while Cisco, whcih really wants Apple as a partner rather than an adversary appears to have painted itself into a corner.