Apple lands a patent for a rectangle with rounded corners

Oh my, our broken patent system is at it again. Yesterday Apple was awarded patent D670,286, which is a design patent pertaining to the iPad’s “ornamental” design. In a sense it’s a patent for a rectangle with rounded edges covering a “portable display device.” Before everyone screams foul, it remains to be seen if it will be worth anything to Apple.

Apple already has a design patent D504,889, and they successfully convinced Judge Lucy Koh that the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 should be banned based on it. Of course, in August, a jury didn’t find the Tab 10.1 infringed on that patent. Back then Samsung was quoted as saying it was “unfortunate that patent law can be manipulated to give one company a monopoly over rectangles with rounded corners.” Interestingly enough Apple now has the patent with this new ’286.

The issue is that this ’286 patent is what Apple and Samsung claimed the ’889 was. Furthermore, “This design patent gives Apple no new advantage, because no one is out there trying to market an iPad lookalike,” Lea Shaver, Associate Professor at Indiana University’s McKinney School of Law told Wired.

Also worth mentioning is the ’286 patent included numerous examples of prior art like an early HP tablet PC, the Knight Ridder concept tablet, and others. These were all used by Samsung as prior art references to the ’889 patent, but still the USPTO examiner let it pass with flying colors.

source: arstechnica


About the Author: Robert Nazarian

Robert lives in upstate New York where he was born and raised. Technology was always his passion. His first computer was a Radio Shack TRS80 Color that used a cassette tape to save programs, and his first laptop was a Toshiba T1200FB that sported a CGA greyscale screen and two 720kb floppy drives (no hardrive). From the early 90’s through late 2011, he only owned Motorola phones starting with the MircroTAC all the way through to the Droid X. He broke that streak when he bought the Galaxy Nexus. Now he's sporting a Galaxy Note 4, and absolutely loves it. He has a wonderful wife and a 6 year old son. In his free time he enjoys sports, movies, TV, working out, and trying to keep up with the rapid fast world of technology.


  • Robert Sydbrink

    How can Apple get all this patents of things that already have been made and idees of others.
    There just have to be some corruption involved.

    • http://MyShocker.com Nudo

      Just a terrible system.