Microsoft Rebrands SkyDrive Over Trademark Dispute With BSkyB

by T+B Blog Team on February 3, 2014

SkyDrive, the cloud-based file hosting service by Microsoft, has been renamed OneDrive after the software company lost a trademark dispute with British telecommunications group BSkyB.

Microsoft announced the change in a blog post on the site for the new service without explaining the reason behind the rebranding, but provided a link to a story on Computer Weekly that tells about the settlement between the two companies.

In the blog post, Ryan Gavin, General Manager of Consumer Apps & Services for Microsoft, wrote it “wasn’t easy” to rename a product as “loved” SkyDrive, but said he believes that the new trademark communicates the value the company can provide to users, and speaks for its vision for the future. The rebranding will not result in changes to the service itself and all users’ content will still be available on OneDrive, he said.

The preview page of OneDrive, which says “OneDrive is everything you love about SkyDrive and more,” suggests some new features could be in the pipeline.

SkyDrive went viral in 2007, but the name prompted a dispute between Microsoft and BSkyB, with the latter claiming it infringed on its trademark, and insisting that the software company change the name. The British company submitted its complaint to the European Union and the case was brought before a U.K. court in June 2013, which ruled that SkyDrive should be rebranded. Microsoft initially said it would appeal the court’s decision, but a month later the two companies announced they had reached a settlement on the issue that gave Microsoft “a reasonable period of time” to rename the service. The agreement also included financial terms that were not disclosed by the parties, Computer Weekly said.

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