Earlier this week we brought you news that Apple was taking steps to seize the iPad3.com domain name. The site was owned by a cybersquatting company called Global Access and was home to a generic collection of ads and links to Apple-related products. Apple filed a request with the World Intellectual Property Organization to have control of the domain name given to them.
Apparently, though, Global Access didn't feel up to arguing its case before (it's lost similar cases to MasterCard, AOL, and others in the past). According to Fusible, ownership of the site was transferred to Apple's lawyers sometime in the last 24-48 hours. The WhoIs data for the site now shows that it belongs to Kilpatrick Townsend, a law firm that has represented Apple in the past.
This is the second time in recent memory that Apple has gone after a domain name related to a product that doesn't actually exist. Back in May they took similar steps to seize iPhone5.com Although the current generation iPad was widely expected to be called the iPad 3 (or iPad HD), Apple actually called it "the new iPad." Similarly, last year's iPhone should have been the iPhone 5, but was called the iPhone 4S. This year's iPhone, still often called the iPhone 5, will almost certainly be patterned after the new iPad and simply called "the new iPhone."
What Apple plans to do with the domain isn't clear. It's currently empty, as is the iPhone5.com domain seized in May. Odds are good they'll simply leave it blank, though they have the option of redirecting it to their official iPad page.