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Why Microsoft renamed its cloud service SkyDrive to OneDrive
6 months after losing a court battle with the UK broadcaster BSkyB concerning the use of the name ‘SkyDrive’, Microsoft has decided to change the name of its cloud based storage service to OneDrive. In June 2013 the English Hight Court found that the name ‘SkyDrive’ was infringing on BSkyB’s Sky name. At first Microsoft said they would appeal the decision, but in the end they decided against it, instead asking for time to change the name to something different. And that something different is not OneDrive.
Ryan Gavin, the general manager of Consumer Apps & Services at Microsoft didn’t say much in regards to the court case and that being the main reason for the name change, he instead outlined other reasons for the new name in a blog post. It also ties in nicely with the Xbox One branding, which we just think is a nice coincidence.
“One place for all of your photos and videos. One place for all of your documents. One place that is seamlessly connected across all the devices you use. You want OneDrive for everything in your life.”
But Microsoft isn’t the first company to be targeted by BSkyB over the use of the word Sky in their branding. Just 2 months after Livescribe launched their Sky WiFi Smartpen, they were quickly forced to change the name in the UK because of BSkyB. Luckily Livescribe changed the name of the smartpen to just simply ‘Livescribe WiFi Smartpen’ in Europe. Our best guess is that Microsoft opted out of changing the name of SkyDrive in just Europe or the UK as its a global online service and could ultimately cause confusion in different markets.
The new OneDrive name will take effect shortly with SkyDrive and SkyDrive Pro becoming OneDrive and OneDrive Business. Take a look at the video below introducing the new OneDrive