Apple finally patents "Rectangles"

Discussion in 'User Submitted News' started by Foxi4, Nov 14, 2012.

  1. Foxi4
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    Foxi4 On the hunt...

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    What you're seeing above is one of the many picture included in Apple's latest patent - US Patent D670,286 (auxiliary link), accepted and awarded to Apple by the United States Patent and Trademark Office - it refers to the iPad's "ornamental design" for a "Portable Display Device". Apple marked its "unique identifying features" with dashed lines. As stated in the patent description, "broken lines in the Figures show portions of the portable display device which form no part of the claimed design.". With that in mind, it appears that for the most part, the patent concerns a rectangle with rounded edges. The only unbroken line in all the figures is the outline of the flat, rounded rectangular front face of the device - other features, such as the speaker grille, round home button, display size, Dock connector, or the iPad's curved back, are not covered by this design patent, as they are featured in others, for example D627,777.

    Apple originally used their design patent D504,889 against Samsung during the lawsuits concerning devices of the Galaxy line - the Galaxy S and Galaxy Tab. That patent was filed in 2004 and awarded in 2005 and was based on the iPad's prototype, and despite the original prelimenary injunction, the jury voted againts Apple's claims connected with the forementioned patent. This one appears to be an attempt at "correcting" this mistake by being much more specific as to remove any vagueness.

    According to Lea Shaver, Associate Professor at Indiana University's McKinnet School of Law, "This design patent gives Apple no new advantage, because no one is out there trying to market an iPad lookalike" and it is uncertain whether the company will use it in court cases, however given their latest history of agressively defending their patented "technology", regardless of whether the patents were logical or asinine, it's likely that they will. "Sigh, sigh, sigh," tweets @twoSeats, "This is just absurd" seconds @caitlindavey - the patent causes much head scratching already. Gizmodo calls it "ridiculously broad", stating that "a world in which it's possible to patent a simple shape seems an odd one indeed." and it's hard not to agree considering the circumstances.

    :arrow:Gizmodo
    :arrow:ArsTechnica
    :arrow:now.MSN
    :arrow:The Verge

    We'll see how this situation develops and what will be the reaction of other players in the tablet market. In the meantime, what do You think about this patent? Is it time to start worring about the future of tablets and other smart devices? Do patents like this stall progress of the industry? Discuss!
     


  2. Bladexdsl

    Bladexdsl ZOMG my posts...it's over 9000!!!

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    I'm gonna go patent the sphere than every company that's made a ball owes me royalties!
     
  3. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    I am not so sure that would work- a perfect sphere is indeed something unattainable

    [​IMG]
    It is a truncated icosahedron after all.

    Anyway normally I would try my hand at shooting down a patent when they get posted in this section (or are otherwise offered up for discussion) but for this I do not think I can even be bothered to try.
     
  4. chris888222

    chris888222 GBAtemp's Flygon Fan

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    Oh god. This is going to turn into another hate thread.
     
  5. Bladexdsl

    Bladexdsl ZOMG my posts...it's over 9000!!!

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    no not soccer balls them round bouncy balls you see in the toy stores they're a perfect sphere most of the time..imagine how many of them there are in the world I want my royalties! :creep:
     
  6. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    Most of the time they would have inflation holes, injection/clamp moulding marks or if we are going further the effects of gravity and/or air pressure would surely serve to flatten the ball a small amount thus preventing them from being perfect spheres. Furthermore if the weight distribution is off then part of it will be different (even internally) which I would also argue is not a perfect sphere.
     
  7. Foxi4
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    Foxi4 On the hunt...

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    Well, it won't be my fault, will it? :P
     
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  8. Bladexdsl

    Bladexdsl ZOMG my posts...it's over 9000!!!

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    ok....you obviously can't tell I'm joking :lol:
     
  9. Arras

    Arras GBAtemp Guru

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    That, or replying to jokes seriously is his way of joking. I do that sometimes.
     
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  10. chartube12

    chartube12 GBAtemp Psycho!

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    Time for the patent office to get sued. Whatever asshole(s) allowed this patent to pass should be fired and laughed at while cleaning out his/her/their desk.
     
  11. Veho

    Veho The man who cried "Ni".

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    I thought things like this could only get copyrighted, not patented.

    But Apple's patent probably includes tolerances otherwise you'd be able to adjust the corner curve by a fraction of a milimeter and claim you have a different design.
     
  12. Qtis

    Qtis Grey Knight Inquisitor

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    While it is an absurd patent, do note that it's a design patent, not an utility patent. This means the functionality of the device is not covered with this alone and that breaking it would require quite a bit of effort. I mean a huge effort. There are tons of design patents and most are just as odd as this one. The end of the Ars article sums it pretty well: http://arstechnica.com/apple/2012/11/apple-awarded-design-patent-for-actual-rounded-rectangle/

    ps. @Foxi4: Your links to the sources aren't working for me at least.
     
  13. Foxi4
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    Foxi4 On the hunt...

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    How odd - perhaps the editing broke them... I'll put them back in as soon as I can - I'm on mobile now so it wouldn't be feasable for me.
     
  14. Bladexdsl

    Bladexdsl ZOMG my posts...it's over 9000!!!

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    what are they gonna patent next the glass screen, the battery or how about the power button to turn the piece of shit on? apple is getting more and more laughable each and every day
     
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  15. DinohScene

    DinohScene Capture the Dino

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    Patenting rectangles...
    Patenting a geometric shape?

    You've got to be fucking kidding me!
     
  16. porkiewpyne

    porkiewpyne Report-er

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    Sorry couldn't resist the temptation :P
     
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  17. BORTZ

    BORTZ Don't pretend you aren't impressed

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    Good god this will never end.
     
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  18. ferofax

    ferofax End of the World

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    The scary thing is now that it's patented, ridiculous does not matter ONE BIT -- it's going to cost money, serious money, if developers go anywhere near the design on this thing.

    Better make slightly oval-ish tablets.
     
  19. porkiewpyne

    porkiewpyne Report-er

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    Nah triangle is the way to go, man :P
     
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  20. naved.islam14

    naved.islam14 Gbatemp's Official Dark Knight™

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    Don't forget, it's 2012!