Sam Shead from ZDNet writes that the USPTO has granted Apple a trademark to its stores in order to cut down on copycats.
Mr. Shead states,
The approval was granted more than two years after the company first filed the application to trademark its stores in May 2010.
Apple has requested that no store be allowed to replicate various features, including “a clear glass storefront surrounded by a panelled facade” or an “oblong table with stools… set below video screens flush mounted on the back wall”.
Apple’s motivation for the trademark comes in part from a fake Apple store in China that made widespread news coverage in 2011 for selling Apple products under the familiar white Apple logo, in a building designed to look just like Apple’s many retail stores.
Of course, since the trademark is only filed with the United States Government, this filing cannot be exercised against persons in foreign countries misusing the trademark.