Judge Koh allows Samsung to present Fidler tablet concept as iPad prior art

Posted:
in iPad edited January 2014
Over Apple's objections, Samsung was granted the right to present pictures of a tablet newspaper concept from 1994 as evidence of prior art refuting the originality of its iPad design patents.

According to a report by Bloomberg, U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh rejected Apple's objections, stating the "issue should go to the jury.?

The Fidler Tablet

Samsung sought to present photos and a video deposition of an electronic newspaper concept developed by Roger Fidler at Knight Ridder, evidence that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington had earlier determined to be significantly different from Apple's patented iPad design.

The so called "Fidler tablet," like other electronic reader products and concept art, was only similar to the iPad in having a rectangular shape, rounded corners and a flat back, the court ruled. Apple hoped to leverage that decision in blocking its presentation in the Samsung trial.

"It?s strange to me that we?re just hearing this now," Koh told Apple's attorneys in overruling their objection. "If you thought the law was so clear cut, I would?ve appreciated that this was brought up sooner." She said Apple could bring up its issues with the evidence in cross examination in front of the jury.

Judge Koh found Apple's patented iPad design sufficiently original to order a preliminary injunction on sales of Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1 in the US. At the same time, she also noted that Samsung had raised substantial claims of invalidity of the patents.

Pictures, but it didn't happen

In Samsung's video deposition of Fidler, he describes his mockup concept, saying he ultimately wanted to create a stylus-free touchscreen that would be thin and have a touchscreen flush with its edges just like the iPad. However, Knight Ridder, his employer at the time, was uninterested in building such a product.

Apple challenged Samsung to produce an actual prototype of the concept, which apparently does not exist. Instead, all that remains is a conceptual video that portrays what appears to be a Pantech e-reader displaying simulated images from a CRT, as the technology to deliver such a device didn't exist in 1994.





Apple itself commercially launched its Newton MessagePad in 1993, but that device was both thicker and smaller, with a profile of a paperback book and reliant upon a stylus due to the constraints of available screen sensor technology. At over $1000, the device remained unaffordably out of reach for most consumers throughout the 1990s.

Apple's Newton did, however, result in the development of ARM's efficient mobile chips that Apple subsequently used in the iPod, and which power virtually every mobile device today.

While the Fidler electronic newspaper conceptually pioneered the potential uses of mobile technology, pictures of it would not be confused for an Apple product today, as Samsung's Galaxy Tab has by consumers. Apple's iPad design patents seek to protect the product's readily identifiable design, not all of its potential uses in general terms.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 72
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 25,996member


    Apple needs to enter into the record their own Knowledge Navigator to counter this insane Samsung argument.

  • Reply 2 of 72
    bryanlbryanl Posts: 67member


    The truth won't come out. Too much money is at stake. What we are seeing here is a one set of high paid lawyers vs another set. 

  • Reply 3 of 72
    quadra 610quadra 610 Posts: 6,679member
    Concept art. Like the "tablet" from 2001: A Space Odyssey.

    All baloney that never existed. Rough, broad ideas that where never implemented. Prior Art my ass. All this Fidler vaporware from yesteryear is barely a step above napkin scribbles.
  • Reply 4 of 72
    ilogicilogic Posts: 298member


    Newton

     

  • Reply 5 of 72


    Or how about "Star Trek" as 'prior art'?


     


    Please…..

  • Reply 6 of 72
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 41,165member


    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

    Apple needs to enter into the record their own Knowledge Navigator to counter this insane Samsung argument.


     


    Computer software that can converse with you? Are you smoking crack?

  • Reply 7 of 72


    this whole thing is 1 million facepalms and still doesnt illustrator the ridiculousness of it all

  • Reply 8 of 72
    povilaspovilas Posts: 473member


    And she dares to be angered by Apple lawyers? Goes nuts on her own.

  • Reply 9 of 72
    hill60hill60 Posts: 6,985member


    1, This isn't a rectangle, there is a large groove running up the right hand side.


     


    2 The border at the top is thinner than the border at the bottom.


     


    It is not like Apple's design patent.


     


    So how many extra hours will Samsung be allowed to present this thing?


     


    How many extra hours will Apple be allowed to refute it?


     


    Why is the Judge suddenly changing the rules?

  • Reply 10 of 72
    jragostajragosta Posts: 10,473member
    povilas wrote: »
    And she dares to be angered by Apple lawyers? Goes nuts on her own.

    Yep. The Fidler tablet is absolutely nothing like the iPad. Hopefully, the jury will see that.

    The really odd thing, though, is that she banned the 2001 'tablet', but allowed this one in. That doesn't make sense.
  • Reply 11 of 72
    don108don108 Posts: 79member


    Am I the only one to notice that the fonts on the Fidler tablet, as well as the appearance, are all Apple Mac? Apple didn't make this, so it's clearly a fraud that is using Apple tech without authorization.

  • Reply 12 of 72
    povilaspovilas Posts: 473member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jragosta View Post





    Yep. The Fidler tablet is absolutely nothing like the iPad. Hopefully, the jury will see that.

    The really odd thing, though, is that she banned the 2001 'tablet', but allowed this one in. That doesn't make sense.


    This can only mean two things, that she’s very smart or that she’s a dumb ass. This could actually be a very good help for Apple defense, but i think i’m digging too deep/watching too many movies.

  • Reply 13 of 72
    malaxmalax Posts: 1,598member


    From the funny video:  "It might be difficult to conceptualize the idea of digital paper, but that's what's going to happen"


     


    Yeah, real hard to conceptionalize.  What a visionary he must have been to imagine that.


     


    It's interesting that in some ways this video from 17 years ago is spot on.  It just missed the Web site as the intermediate step between "physical newspaper" to "tablet news." 


     


    I like the demo around the 5:50 mark where he hands her his tablet and she hands him her lunch (which he then starts eating with the silverware she had been using).

  • Reply 14 of 72
    kerrybkerryb Posts: 270member


    I would not doubt looking through Leonardo Di Vinci's drawings one could find prior art for a iPad device. 


     
  • Reply 15 of 72
    auxioauxio Posts: 1,694member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jragosta View Post



    The really odd thing, though, is that she banned the 2001 'tablet', but allowed this one in. That doesn't make sense.


     


    Exactly.  I highly doubt there ever was a functioning prototype of the Fidler tablet.  It looks like they filmed someone holding an unhinged laptop screen and then later edited the video to add the screen images over top.  How is that any different from the technology props in a movie?


     


    Do the legwork to actually create a functioning prototype or GTFO!  This is where the patent system has become a farce.  People can dream up whatever they want, patent it, then sit back and wait for a payday thanks to the people who put in the hard work to actually create things.

  • Reply 16 of 72
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 4,614member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jragosta View Post





    Yep. The Fidler tablet is absolutely nothing like the iPad. Hopefully, the jury will see that.

    The really odd thing, though, is that she banned the 2001 'tablet', but allowed this one in. That doesn't make sense.


    That's why the appeals process will take years, maybe a decade, no matter who "wins." By that time we'll be using completely new technology and devices.

  • Reply 17 of 72
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 41,165member


    Originally Posted by kerryb View Post

    I would not doubt looking through Leonardo Di Vinci's drawings one could find prior art for a iPad device. 

     



     


    Da Vinci invented the bicycle. Jobs said a computer is like a bicycle for the mind. The iPad is a computer.


     


    "Your honor, Apple owes trillions (interest) to the estate of Leonardo Da Vinci!"

  • Reply 18 of 72
    pendergastpendergast Posts: 1,358member
    I'd almost rather all of these supposed "prior art" devices be allowed into evidence so that we can finally stop hearing all the Samsung apologists crying the "if only's".
  • Reply 19 of 72
    charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,084member
    jragosta wrote: »
    Yep. The Fidler tablet is absolutely nothing like the iPad. Hopefully, the jury will see that.
    The really odd thing, though, is that she banned the 2001 'tablet', but allowed this one in. That doesn't make sense.

    So Apple objects in front of the jury using the appeals court as grounds. Even if she says no, then the jury heard it. Or they bring up the issue in cross.
  • Reply 20 of 72
    neo42neo42 Posts: 287member


    No comment on whether this should be considered prior art.  However considering this was 18 years ago, they did an awesome job predicting the future.  If you think there is no commonality with iPad and other modern tablets, you're clearly fooling yourself. 

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