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Apple granted patent for iPhone display shock absorber

post #1 of 36
Thread Starter 
Apple this week was awarded a patent for a shock-absorbing rubber coating that helps protect fragile components like the glass display of the iPhone.

U.S. Patent No. 8,248,777, entitled "Viscoelastic Material for Shock Protection in an Electronic Device," was officially awarded to Apple by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on Tuesday. The filing, discovered by AppleInsider, describes a "boundary element" that can deform in response to impacts to a device.

The invention, credited to Christopher Prest, was first filed with the USPTO in September of 2008. It describes placing elastic materials around components to absorb at least part of an impact if the object is dropped or hit in some way.

"An electronic device may be surrounded on all sides by material operative to absorb a shock to the electronic device component," the invention reads.

Materials selected for their viscoelastic properties could be selected to reduce shocks on the component. In the case of the iPhone, a thin rubber bezel rests between the Gorilla Glass display and the exterior bezel of the device.

Patent


For the purposes of the patent, the ideal material would have dominant elastic properties in a "large impact scenario," such as an iPhone being dropped from a great distance, while the material's viscous properties would be dominant in the "small impact scenario," such as smaller drops that occur more frequently.

The rubber screen gasket and seal found inside the iPhone is actually part of the frame assembly of the device. The tiny layer provides a tight seal and flush appearance to the front of Apple's iOS devices.
post #2 of 36

We're going to see 'shopped pictures of iPhones with undercarriage lighting, spinning Home Buttons, and 300w subwoofers, aren't we?

 

And NOW Apple is patenting a rectangle, so finally all those lies are truth.

Originally posted by Relic

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Originally posted by Relic

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post #3 of 36

Apple patenting more ingenius rectangles...

Long FB, AMZN
Schlong AAPL

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Long FB, AMZN
Schlong AAPL

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post #4 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

We're going to see 'shopped pictures of iPhones with undercarriage lighting, spinning Home Buttons, and 300w subwoofers, aren't we?

 

And NOW Apple is patenting a rectangle, so finally all those lies are truth.


Amazing how you're almost always first to comment.

Social Capitalist, dreamer and wise enough to know I'm never going to grow up anyway... so not trying anymore.

 

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Social Capitalist, dreamer and wise enough to know I'm never going to grow up anyway... so not trying anymore.

 

http://m.ign.com/articles/2014/07/16/7-high-school-girls-are-kickstarting-their-awa...

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post #5 of 36

"An electronic device may be surrounded on all sides by material operative to absorb a shock to the electronic device component,"

 

Not sure where the invention is here... hardware has been designed like this for years.  Mil spec stuff, even good case construction meets this because a case is designed to absorb a shock when dropped.
 

post #6 of 36

You guys it's not just rectangles, it's concentric rectangles. Big difference.

post #7 of 36
Samsung lawyers will show the next jury picturez of padded crash helmets as "prior art."

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"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

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post #8 of 36

Why don't you read the patent before making a fool of yourself. The patent involves a parallel system of dampers, one that is elastic, and one that is viscous. While people talk trash here, Apple continues to innovate and patent, which is what every tech company should be doing.

 
post #9 of 36

A picture worth a thousand words if I ever saw one.

post #10 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

We're going to see 'shopped pictures of iPhones with undercarriage lighting, spinning Home Buttons, and 300w subwoofers, aren't we?
I was thinking more like mud flaps, skid plates, grill guards, and roll bars with lighting packages...With new shocks you're gonna want to go off-roadin'...or at least muddin'.

We've always been at war with Eastasia...

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We've always been at war with Eastasia...

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post #11 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by dbeats View Post

Why don't you read the patent before making a fool of yourself. The patent involves a parallel system of dampers, one that is elastic, and one that is viscous. While people talk trash here, Apple continues to innovate and patent, which is what every tech company should be doing.
 

Exactly. You'd think that people would learn to read a patent before commenting on it. Using the very simplistic summary provided by AI is silly.

That said, this is a VERY narrow patent. Clearly, the prior art is immense and they have to work around the question of obviousness.
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"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
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post #12 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post
Exactly. You'd think that people would learn to read a patent before commenting on it. 

For a change I totally agree with you.

melior diabolus quem scies
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melior diabolus quem scies
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post #13 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by dbeats View Post

Why don't you read the patent before making a fool of yourself. The patent involves a parallel system of dampers, one that is elastic, and one that is viscous. While people talk trash here, Apple continues to innovate and patent, which is what every tech company should be doing.

 

 

This patent will be invalidated if it is used to stop others or collect money.  This method has been used, in almost every possible form, to protect sensitive items. There have been many items that have been protected by two or even three differing layers of materials with different properties including elastic and viscous. Take a look at items such as early portable barcode scanning systems with LCD displays and other rugged portable electronics.  I am an Apple owner and shareholder. 

post #14 of 36

 Can't wait to see Amazon's patent for this.

 

 I hear Bezos wants mini airbags for his idea.

post #15 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

We're going to see 'shopped pictures of iPhones with undercarriage lighting, spinning Home Buttons, and 300w subwoofers, aren't we?

 

And NOW Apple is patenting a rectangle, so finally all those lies are truth.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by lightknight View Post


Amazing how you're almost always first to comment.

i would not be surprised if "Tallest Skil, Global moderator" and "Kasper's Automated Slave, Adminstrator" desks are beside/in front each other at "appleinsider" offices...

 

or they are the same person. there is one other moderator.... for two in total.

post #16 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by BeltsBear View Post

This patent will be invalidated if it is used to stop others or collect money.  This method has been used, in almost every possible form, to protect sensitive items. There have been many items that have been protected by two or even three differing layers of materials with different properties including elastic and viscous. Take a look at items such as early portable barcode scanning systems with LCD displays and other rugged portable electronics.  I am an Apple owner and shareholder. 

As I said earlier, this is a very narrow patent and even within the scope of its narrow claims, may have 'obviousness' problem.

However, that doesn't mean that Apple shouldn't have applied for it. One common use for patent applications is simply to create a paper trail and prior art to prevent others from applying for it. It is quite common for execs to say "this patent won't be defensible and we would never sue someone over it, but we're concerned that someone else might try to sue us, so we'll get a patent first." Under that scenario, a weak patent is nearly as good as a strong one.

Interestingly, if you look at strategy, the latter logic really only makes sense if you're seriously considering commercializing the technology. If you don't plan to commercialize it, filing for a weak patent has far less value. OTOH, for a strong patent, there's value even if you don't plan to commercialize it - since you could always license it.
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"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
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post #17 of 36
Originally Posted by haar View Post
i would not be surprised if "Tallest Skil, Global moderator" and "Kasper's Automated Slave, Adminstrator" desks are beside/in front each other at "appleinsider" offices...

 

or they are the same person. there is one other moderator.... for two in total.

 

I'd edit posts before posting them if I was the AI bot. lol.gif

 

We have four active moderators and an active administrator.

Originally posted by Relic

...those little naked weirdos are going to get me investigated.
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Originally posted by Relic

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post #18 of 36

Maybe this has something to do with the rumor that Apple's next phone will 'screw over' case manufacturers? Or maybe its because Apple is developing a new case. 

post #19 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by lightknight View Post


Amazing how you're almost always first to comment.

I can't find the previous thread at the moment, but I believe TS adequately explained how / why he's often THE, or one of the first to post...

post #20 of 36

anyone else thinking... Flubber?

post #21 of 36

This should work well.  I used to manufacture extreme environment industrial touch screen computers through out the 90's.  I used this type of system to mount the hard drives.  I had to use a gel between two thin Mylar layers to move the heat away from the drives and neoprene gaskets and silicone rubber to provide additional cushioning around the edges for shock and vibration.  I use another system with Multiple layers of RTV Silicone and Neoprene to actually mount the Touchscreen in the Aluminum Bezel.  The multiple layers were necessary to handle the difference in thermal expansion between the glass and the aluminum frame.  Otherwise the resistive Mylar touch screen would delaminate...

 

I am not sure this could be called a NEW technology.  I guess the patent is in applying the technology to smart phones...???

post #22 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by BeltsBear View Post

 

This patent will be invalidated if it is used to stop others or collect money.  This method has been used, in almost every possible form, to protect sensitive items. There have been many items that have been protected by two or even three differing layers of materials with different properties including elastic and viscous. Take a look at items such as early portable barcode scanning systems with LCD displays and other rugged portable electronics.  I am an Apple owner and shareholder. 

 

It's been used since forever... but not in a smartphone. Context is everything.

Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

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Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

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post #23 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by ClementineOrange View Post

Apple patenting more ingenius rectangles...

Yeah, for once I'm totally in awe that this was granted.  This is a very strange patent to be granted.  I guess it's worth trying to patent anything these days, you'll probably be granted it.

post #24 of 36
They can patent this "invention" without actually having a physical invention or a description of what it's made of? (didn't read the patent so correct me if I'm wrong)

Is that legit?
post #25 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by lightknight View Post


Amazing how you're almost always first to comment.

 

Global Moderators tend to allow that.

post #26 of 36
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post
Global Moderators tend to allow that.

 

I also tend to* allow straight up insults toward me, too. lol.gif So if anyone feels like breaking the rules and insulting another user, take it out on me instead. I'll be the Curly to your Moe.

 

*tend to… *smaller laughing emoticon*

Originally posted by Relic

...those little naked weirdos are going to get me investigated.
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Originally posted by Relic

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post #27 of 36

The new iPhone subwoofer.  Made up of great dane placenta stem cells.  It grows on you.  It's like your iPhone is a virtual pet, literally.  The new Feline model is expected next year.

An Apple man since 1977
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An Apple man since 1977
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post #28 of 36
Originally Posted by tylerk36 View Post
It grows on you.

 

Literally. And that's downright terrifying.

 

😱

Originally posted by Relic

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Originally posted by Relic

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post #29 of 36

And in ten minutes, "Samsung vs. Apple"

 

Samsung's opening Statements:

Our devices are pointless and already do this since they have fake screens that are actually rubber! Apple violated our patent for devices that no one cares if they are dropped. 

 

 


Tim Cook using Galaxy Tabs as frisbees

 

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Tim Cook using Galaxy Tabs as frisbees

 

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post #30 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by AbsoluteDesignz View Post

They can patent this "invention" without actually having a physical invention or a description of what it's made of? (didn't read the patent so correct me if I'm wrong)

Hint:
Read a patent before commenting on it.

They described it in enough detail to satisfy the patent office. Whether that would hold up if challenged is an open question.
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post #31 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by tarfungo View Post

I can't find the previous thread at the moment, but I believe TS adequately explained how / why he's often THE, or one of the first to post...

I'm guessing it's that he has nothing better to do and his life is this forum?

Not knocking him- any forum needs super-active posters. I just wonder if on his death bed he'll look back and be happy about the 10s of thousands of hours he spent typing on this thing and think that's fulfilling.

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2012 27" iMac i7, 2010 27" iMac i7, 2011 Mac Mini i5
iPad Air, iPad Mini Retina, (2) iPhone 5S, iPod Touch 5
Time Capsule 5, (3) AirPort Express 2, (2) Apple TV 3

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post #32 of 36
Originally Posted by Andysol View Post
I just wonder if on his death bed he'll look back and be happy about the 10s of thousands of hours he spent typing on this thing and think that's fulfilling.

 

Don't worry, I'm looking back. Can't remember anything, anyway.

Originally posted by Relic

...those little naked weirdos are going to get me investigated.
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Originally posted by Relic

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post #33 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

Hint:
Read a patent before commenting on it.
They described it in enough detail to satisfy the patent office. Whether that would hold up if challenged is an open question.

if you're going to respond to me, why not answer me?
post #34 of 36
Which of these:
Quote:
1. A method for reducing shocks received by an electronic device component, comprising: providing the electronic device component within an electronic device housing; and defining a shell surrounding the electronic device component, the shell being fully contained within the electronic device housing, the shell comprising: a first layer enclosing at least in part the electronic device component, the first layer located adjacent to the electronic device component and constructed from a visco-elastic material that provides shock protection of a first characteristic for the component, the first characteristic including both viscous and elastic responses; and a second layer completely enclosing the first layer, the second layer directly interfaces with the first layer and constructed from an elastic material that provides shock protection of a second characteristic for the component, the second characteristic including an elastic response; wherein the combination of the first and second layers reduces the effects of shock events of varying magnitudes to the component.

2. The method of claim 1, wherein the electronic device component is operative to move in at least one direction within the shell.

3. The method of claim 1, further comprising: determining the impact for which protection of the component is to be optimized; and selecting a viscoelastic material for which strain rate is less than a maximum value for the stress associated with the determined impact.

4. The method of claim 3, wherein the viscoelastic material is operative to deform in response to a force being applied to the electronic device.

5. An electronic device with shock protection for components, comprising: a housing; at least one component placed within the housing, the at least one component operative to deflect in response to a force being applied to the housing; and a boundary component placed around at least a portion of the at least one component, the boundary component comprising: a first layer enclosing at least in part the at least one component, the first layer located adjacent to the electronic device component and constructed from a visco-elastic material that provides shock protection of a first characteristic for the component, the first characteristic including both viscous and elastic responses; and a second layer completely enclosing the first layer, the second layer directly interfaces with the first layer and constructed from an elastic material that provides shock protection of a second characteristic for the component, the second characteristic including an elastic response; wherein the combination of the first and second layers reduces the effects of shock events of varying magnitudes to the component.

6. The electronic device of claim 5, wherein the boundary component is positioned adjacent to the at least one component.

7. The electronic device of claim 6, wherein the boundary component is positioned such that the at least one component is operative to deflect into the boundary component in response to the force being applied to the housing.

8. The electronic device of claim 5, wherein the boundary component is at least one of an amorphous polymer, a semicrystalline polymer, a biopolymer, and bitumen material.

9. The electronic device of claim 5, wherein the relationship between stress and strain rate of the boundary component is optimized for at least two different levels of forces applied to the housing.

10. The electronic device of claim 9, wherein the relationship between stress and strain rate of the boundary component is non-linear.

is an invention?
post #35 of 36
How ingenious!! In the window business, we called it "Spline"
post #36 of 36
Originally Posted by Zomp View Post
How ingenious!! In the window business, we called it "Spline"

 

Do you reticulate them?

Originally posted by Relic

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Originally posted by Relic

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