Dyson and Hoover meet in court

Two home appliances giants are fighting it out in court this week, with Dyson Appliances accusing vacuum cleaner rival Hoover of an alleged infringement of a patented design (DW 9 July 1999).

Dyson claims that one of the 1995 patents for its classic Dual Cyclone technology has been infringed by Hoover’s Triple Vortex design.

Dyson’s Dual Cyclone system replaced more traditional product designs with a bagless suction mechanism.

“Dyson has taken this action to protect its inventions from being copied,” says a Dyson Appliances spokeswoman.

“Dyson, as a technology company, must enforce its intellectual property rights… Dyson has spent 20 years developing its unique technology,” she adds.

A Hoover spokesman says, “We do not accept the allegations and we are vigorously defending the court case.”

“Throughout the development of the Vortex cleaner, Hoover was cognisant of patents for cyclonic vacuum cleaners, including those registered by Dyson,” says a Hoover spokeswoman.

The court case follows last week’s call by the Advertising Standards Authority for Hoover to drop claims that its Vortex model was “the most advanced vacuum cleaner on the market”, in addition to claims of certain savings against other bagless vacuum cleaners.

Dyson’s action is being brought against Candy, which owns the Hoover brand in Europe, and not against the company’s US brand owner Maytag.

The London High Court case is not expected to last for more than a week.

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