Is Vizio Getting Into Kitchen Appliances and Home Electronics?
Vizio Inc. has filed trademark applications for washing machines, vacuum cleaners, dishwashers, LED light bulbs and other home and kitchen appliances. Could the TV maker become the next Haier?
Vizio, Inc., the big name in TVs, audio, and A/V components, may have major appliances and household electronics in its sights. The company filed trademark applications starting in 2013 for kitchen appliances such as dishwashers, refrigerators, rice cookers,and coffee makers, as well as other home appliances such vacuum cleaners, washing machines, LED light bulbs and “desk or car mounted units incorporating a loudspeaker to allow a telephone handset to be used hands-free.”
Having not utilized the trademark for household appliances in the allotted two years, Vizio was granted an extension in October 2015.
First: How did I find this? I don’t actually stalk Vizio on Trademarkia. I just happened to notice an interesting TM notation on Vizio’s latest press release for the P-Series™ Home Theater Display™ (kind of interesting, by the way).
I wondered: Can you really trademark the term “Home Theater Display”?
Well, the trademark office apparently refused Vizio’s TM application on Oct. 27, 2015, giving an estimated response deadline of April 27, 2016. So we’ll see.
Anyway, as long as I was looking at Vizio trademarks, I found the one for appliances. And here we are.
Vizio Home Appliances Would Make Sense
Of course, big companies file trademark applications on a million things that never transpire, and this could very well be an example of that.
But I’m telling you right here, right now: Vizio is getting into the home-appliance business. The category just makes too much sense for Vizio to ignore. Key TV competitors LG and Samsung already do it. And then there’s China’s giant home-electronics manufacturer Haier, a major supplier of low-cost displays (a la Vizio) and home appliances, especially in the Far East. In January, Haier announced it would acquire GE’s home-appliance business for $5.4 billion.
The kitchen appliance market is expected to generate $253 billion in sales by 2020, according to Applied Market Research.
Vizio started life as kind of a schlock TV brand in 2002, but in the past few years has become known as a value-priced, quality provider with wide brand recognition. The company sort of sealed its fate as a premium brand last year when it introduced a 120-inch, $130,000 4K display with HDR at CEDIA Expo, the show for home technology integrators.
Certainly the now-popular brand, with annual revenues of over $3 billion, would play well in the home-appliance market.
Heck, maybe Vizio will acquire Electrolux, which is smarting from its failed bid to acquire GE Appliances for $3.3 billion.
How about an over/under on Vizio’s home-appliance announcement?
I’ll start: October 2016, with the big reveal at CES 2017.
Vizio Inc. Trademark Application for Home Appliances
Initially filed Oct. 31, 2013; first extension granted Oct. 23, 2015.
Clothes washing machines; clothes washing machines combined with a clothes dryer; dish washing machines; dishwashers; electric can openers; electronic juicers; electric blenders for household purposes; electric food processors; electric fruit presses for household purposes; power-operated coffee grinders; garbage disposals; vacuum cleaners; electric generators; compressed air pumps
Mobile phones; smart phones; desk or car mounted units incorporating a loudspeaker to allow a telephone handset to be used hands-free; wireless communication devices, namely, smart phones, telephone handsets, and telephone headsets
LED light bulbs; LED luminaires; LED lighting fixtures; refrigerators; microwave ovens; air conditioners; electric air cleaners; air purifiers; furnace boilers; clothes dryers; humidifiers; dehumidifiers; electric dish dryers; electronic blankets not for medical purposes; electric coffee makers; electric cookers, namely, electric bread cookers, electric egg cookers, electric rice cookers, electric pressure cookers, and electric slow cookers; e...
Btw: The Vizio trademark application for electronic cigarettes and cartridges filed in 2012 is from Tropical Del Campo Inc., not Vizio, Inc. The trademark request was abandoned in 2013.
Btw 2: Vizio has also filed a trademark application for screen cleaners, cleaning cloths and "electronic consoles for playing games and for playing video and audio internet content on a television." A second extension for this one was granted in January 2016.
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Julie Jacobson is founding editor of CE Pro, the leading media brand for the home-technology channel. She has covered the smart-home industry since 1994, long before there was much of an Internet, let alone an Internet of things. Currently she studies, speaks, writes and rabble-rouses in the areas of home automation, security, networked A/V, wellness-related technology, biophilic design, and the business of home technology. Julie majored in Economics at the University of Michigan, spent a year abroad at Cambridge University, and earned an MBA from the University of Texas at Austin. She is a recipient of the annual CTA TechHome Leadership Award, and a CEDIA Fellows honoree. A washed-up Ultimate Frisbee player, Julie currently resides in San Antonio, Texas and sometimes St. Paul, Minn. Follow on Twitter: @juliejacobson Email Julie at firstname.lastname@example.org
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