The Beatles company (Apple Corps) and Apple (Mac) Computers have had years and years of lawsuits and litigation since 1978 until the companies announced a final settlement February 5, 2007. The basis of this conflict was the trademark of the name Apple. Apple Corps (The Beatles) reached an initial agreement with Apple (Computers) allowing them to use the name as long as they did not get into the music business.
In 1986, when Apple (Computers) added MIDI and audio-recording capabilities to is Apple II computers systems Apple Corps. (The Beatles) sued. After a few more lawsuits and settlements between the two Apple’s an Apple (Computer) employee created a short sample of a xylophone that he named “Chimes”. In order to avoid another lawsuit Apple (Computer) lawyers asked the employee to change the name “Chimes” as it sounded too musical. He then asked to change it to “Let it Beep” a sly dig at The Beatles song “Let It Be”. After he was told that “Let it Beep” would not pass legal approval he said, “So Sue Me”. And thus the name of the sound was created “Sosumi”.
Finally, in 2007 Apple (Computer) reached a 500 million dollar agreement with Apple Corps. (The Beatles) who handed over all Apple trademarks to Apple (Computer) but still allows The Beatles to use the Apple name with permission. Steve Jobs who was a huge Beatles fan and named his company after them said,
“We love the Beatles, and it has been painful being at odds with them over these trademarks… we wish Apple Inc. every success and look forward to many years of peaceful cooperation with them.”
The in 2010, The Beatles music was finally available on itunes. Jobs said,
“We love The Beatles and are honored and thrilled to welcome them to iTunes,” he continued by quoting a Beatles song, “It has been a long and winding road to get here. Thanks to The Beatles and EMI, we are now realizing a dream we’ve had since we launched iTunes ten years ago.”