Apple's iPad mini has failed to receive its US trademark after it was deemed a "merely descriptive" name for the device. 

Apple has until July to try to persuade the patent office otherwise. The issue is that the "mini" part of the new iPad's name doesn't match differences the device brings from its bigger brother. 

No trademark means, in theory, that other devices with the same name could appear in the US. None of the elements of the product's name, according to the patent office "create a unique, incongruous, or non-descriptive meaning in relation to the goods being small handheld mobile devices comprising tablet computers capable of providing internet access".

Read: Apple iPad mini review

It is possible the lack of trademark could cause issues for Apple, but given how iconic a product its iPad and iPad mini are, not many consumers will confuse them with something else. It does make counterfeiting an issue, but Apple owns multiple patents on the shape, design and internals of the iPad and iPad mini.

The iPad mini was one of our favourite small form factor tablets of last year, getting Pocket-lint's five-star rating. At £269 it's slightly more costly than the competition, but then Apple products come at a premium.