The USPTO refused registration of the mark ALL IN ONE, finding it to be merely descriptive of “electric wall-mounted hand dryers.” Applicant Excel argued that because its products perform only one function they can’t be all-in-one units, and therefore it would take “significant imagination and thought for a relevant consumer to reach a conclusion as to the nature of the associated goods.” How do you think this appeal came out? In re Excel Dryer, Inc., Serial No. 86754756 (March 2, 2018) [not precedential] (Opinion by Judge Thomas Shaw).
The evidence submitted by Examining Attorney Joanna M. Shanoski showed that wall-mounted hand dryers frequently combine a number of functions or features into one unit: for example, the ability to dry both hands and hair. “In addition, the dryers may include automatic sensors, be ADA compliant, vandal resistant and able to handle multiple voltages, incorporate antimicrobial technology, or have paper towel dispensers as well.”
Since applicant’s identification of goods is broadly worded and without limitation as to function or feature, it must be interpreted to include functions or features common to such hand dryers.
Accordingly, we find that consumers will readily understand from the term ALL IN ONE that Applicant’s hand dryers will combine two or more functions or features in a single unit. Indeed, two of the foregoing hand dryer product descriptions, the “VERDIdri all-in-one hand dryer” and the American Specialties “all-in-one unit,” use the term “all-in-one” to describe similar competing products with multiple such functions or features. ALL IN ONE must remain available for competitors to use in describing their hand dryers with multiple functions or features.”
And so the Board affirmed the refusal.