How Steve Jobs Got The Domain and Trademark For Free

By on August 26, 2011

I’m sure you’ve all heard about Steve Jobs resigning as CEO of Apple. Today, I read a post that stood out among the sea of farewells and Apple nostalgia. I really didn’t think I would be writing a post about Steve Jobs myself, but this is a great look at the impact domains, especially generic brands, can have on business.

The Next Web shared the interesting story of how CEO Marc Benioff, gave a very special gift to Steve Jobs as thanks for his influence and sage advice.

In 2003, Benioff brought a few members of his executive team to visit Steve Jobs. The words of wisdom he would receive turned out to have profound implications for both Salesforce and Apple.

“You have a fantastic enterprise application here, but you’ve got to build an ecosystem.”

The team took the advice to heart and developed a new technology called “App Store”, where users could buy enterprise applications and run them within Salesforce.

The project ended up launching under a different name, “App Exchange.” But, Benioff liked the App Store name so much that he purchased the domain name and corresponding trademark.

Years later, in 2008, Benioff was in the audience when Steve Jobs announced his own App Store. After the announcement, Benioff went up to Steve Jobs and offered the domain and the trademark rights as a gift, in appreciation of his help in 2003.

Apple now defends the trademark in court and uses the powerful generic brand to reign-supreme over other application platforms. Now that is a domain that is truly priceless.

About Mark Fulton

Mark is the Founder of DotSauce Magazine and a full time web developer, domain investor, SEO and online marketing professional residing in North Carolina, USA. Visit for information on freelance website development, SEO and consultation services.
  • Troy

    Thanks Mark. Good story!

  • 94 Media

    Great story thank you Mark.

  • Jay

    Thanks for sharing this great story! :)

  • Jay

    Thanks for sharing this great story! :)

  • Successclick

    Hi Mark,

    I know this story, good of you to write it on your blog. We seriously thought about contacting MS when we found out they were suing Apple about using “”.

    We were going to tell Microsoft “Hey, stop wasting attorney fees on that hopeless cause, and just buy to get the top generic domain for the category.”

    We didn’t though, because we’re Apple fans, and users. If MS wants the domain, they know how to contact us. If not, we’re paying 15% to anyone who can connect us with the right person at MS, and the sale is made. Right now, I think the domain is up for sale on the Future Trend Domain Auction™ for $50,000 reserve. Yipes!

  • LeadTrader

    I thought AppStore was ruled to be trademark free with the Amazon decision recently?

  • Corporate photographer

    Very sad to hear about Steve Jobs having to retire. He has brought great vision to our society and made Apple a great company.

  • File Finder Mac

    I think in the court of common sense, no one should own the term ‘app’ or ‘app store’. Perhaps I’m either in the minority, or I just wouldn’t hold up in court.

  • Russell Davison

    Interesting. I wonder how the corporate tax man valued such “gifts” as ‘App Store’ and ‘’, with so much intrinsic values,  between the two companies?

  • Hidlight_Accessories_HID

    I think in the court of common sense, no one should own the term ‘app’
    or ‘app store’. Perhaps I’m either in the minority, or I just wouldn’t
    hold up in court.

  • Complete_HID_Kits

    I heard he is really sick and could die anytime :(

  • beavers bend cabins

    This is amazing to know about steve jobs, i dint know about him. After getting the domain they have made a lot of progress.

  • Cm

    Nice story!!!

    Have you checked out steve jobs app in app store??? With quotes and trivia!
    It’s nice :)

  • BMW_Accessories

    I think in the court of common sense, no one should own the term ‘app’
    or ‘app store’. Perhaps I’m either in the minority, or I just wouldn’t
    hold up in court..

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    good site. I would recommend it to friends.

  • SEO Services

    What a great story Mark, thanks for sharing.

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    Took me time to read all the comments, but I really enjoyed the article. It proved to be Very helpful to me and I am sure to all the commenters here! It’s always nice when you can not only be informed, but also entertained! I’m sure you had fun writing this article.

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    Thank you so much for this post.I found lots of
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  • Chris Red26

    nice story,thanks for sharing with us!


    This is a great blog you have here Mark. I guess this is my first visit here and I always love it. I am going to be a frequent visitor here. Love your writing style. Thanks for this wonderful tips.

  • scholarship essay

    Good story about one of the greatest managers in the world and his way of management. Good luck to apple in their court battles.

  • Carol

    That was genius guy. Thank for telling more about him.
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  • jack

    very informatif, nice story about steve jobs, i just read all biography

  • virginia bed and breakfast

    It was Steve Jobs’s big decision to quit as a CEO. Well, he
    already had said that when he was not capable enough to lead the company he
    would resign as CEO. So he did so! 

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    Steve Jobs was a remarkable innovator, I liked his story and thanks for sharing

  • writing career

    He`s the best who I know in now time.

  • research papers

    Steve Jobs is very clever man! Video is good!


    Thanks….This is really a nice post….!!!!1
    Thank you….

  • cheap phones for sale

    I guess Steve Jobs had a great slice of luck in business as well as being good at what he did. Thanks for the post Mark

  • Real Estate IDX

    Very Cool Story thanks for the heads up

  • Bethn

    Your post got some great ideas to share and discuss. Hope you still have more informative and interesting to share with us.. thanks

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    Great post.

  • Casti de copiat

    Steve Jobs was a genius guy.Nice video and nice story.

  • chi flat iron

    The psychology of Domaining is continuing for everyday life.

  • Sisteme de copiat

    Thank you for sharing this story.It’s very sad to hear about Steve Jobs,on my opinion he was the hurt of the Apple.

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    Great article shared here. I got the great knowledge. It is really necessary to know. I am highly obliged to be here by getting it.

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    This is a great story, many thanks

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    thanks alot  very much

  • adult chat

    Steve Jobs was a great person! Thanks for the post!

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    Steve jobs my best personality and his work has a difference with others makes him so success as well as this selection.

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  • Agus H

    Nice story from steve jobs.. thanks for share mark

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    Amazing post! i am so thankful to you! quite informative and interesting as well… appreciate your efforts!

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    great story he realy was a special man

  • Suryamalam

    Good story! . Thanks for sharing

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    This is a very significant blog.  Thanks for sharing your thoughts. Keep up the good job in posting very good topics. 

  • wholesale hookah supplies

    Good story. Steve was a really hard working and a lucky man and we all love him.

  • Sve i Svasta

    RIP Steve Jobs.
    He was a great man…