It has accused the US computer giant of breaching an agreement by using the apple logo and Apple name to promote music products. When Apple Computers was founded, Steve Jobs is said to have chosen the name in part as a tribute to the Beatles. Their agreement in 1991 dealt with the future use of the name “Apple” and of the well-known logos used by both companies.
Apple Corps is a London-based company owned by Sir Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr and the widows of John Lennon and George Harrison.
It has begun legal proceedings in the High Court and is seeking damages and an injunction to enforce the terms of an agreement made in 1991.
Apple Computers admitted the two firms had “differing interpretations” of the agreement.
The recently-launched iTunes enables computer users to download music from the internet.
It currently has about 200,000 songs available after striking deals with various record labels and was welcomed by record companies because users pay to download a song.
The company has sold 10 million downloads since it launched in April.