Brazilian regulators have ruled that Apple doesn’t have exclusive rights to use the “iPhone” trademark in the country. The decision is the result of a local company, Gradiente Eletronica, registering the name in 2000, seven years before the US firm.

A spokesman for Apple declined to comment. However, the Institute of Industrial Property told the “BBC” (http://tinyurl.com/aowv3tq) that it understood Apple was pursuing an appeal.

Gradiente, a Brazilian electronics company, had first requested to trademark “iPhone” as their brand back in 2000 before Appleā€™s smartphone was unveiled. Last week the Brazilian Institute for Industrial Property (INPI) gave Gradiente that exclusivity in 2008 for their G-Gradiente iPhone, which runs the Android operating system.