Apple's iPad design patent may be declared invalid

in iPad edited January 2014


One major story line that was unreported in the aftermath of the preliminary injunction hearing was Koh’s statement regarding the validity of the iPad design patent. In short, and without parsing words, Koh stated that she thinks that the iPad design patent is invalid. When Samsung’s counsel was raising a prior art reference, specifically the ‘‘1994 Knight-Ridder’’ tablet prototype, Koh interjected, ‘‘I think that invalidates the ’889 . . .’’


In 1994, the publisher Knight-Ridder produced and distributed a video that showed such a device with many of the elements embodied in Apple’s later D’889 patent application, including an overall rectangular shape with four evenly rounded corners, a flat clear surface on the front of the device, a rim surrounding the front surface, a substantially flat back panel that rounds up near the edges to form the rim around the front surface, and a thin form factor. Apple failed to disclose this device to the PTO during the D’889 patent’s prosecution, even though Apple

knew of its existence directly from Dr. Fidler, with whom Apple worked.

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