Samsung took to the courts recently, setting their sights on Apple. Operating under the claim that patents for the iPad should have been denied based on existing designs. What tablets looked like the iPad? The ones from 2001: A Space Odyssey, of course.
Samsung’s lawyer filed the case with a federal court in San Jose, near Apple’s headquarters, and had this to say on the matter:
“In a clip from that film lasting about one minute, two astronauts are eating and at the same time using personal tablet computers. [….] The tablet disclosed in the clip has an overall rectangular shape with a dominant display screen, narrow borders, a predominately flat front surface, a flat back surface (which is evident because the tablets are lying flat on the table’s surface), and a thin form factor.”
Simply put, that is an absurd claim. Samsung, your recent products bear a striking resemblance to existing Apple products, yet Steve Jobs lets you have your (arguably) lesser technology. Because an item has roughly the same shape doesn’t mean it infringes upon the concept or existence of a product. With at least half a dozen current tablet computers bearing the same design (smaller than a dictionary’s cover, rectangular, black border to frame the screen, touch-based OS, etc.), Samsung could be the victim of a very similar series of lawsuits.
In addition to 2001, they are invoking the name of British show The Tomorrow People, claiming it, too, has a tablet computer with a prominent rectangular display framed by four corners, all evenly shaped and rounded off. So it looks like most other tablets, because who would ever make something with four unequal sharpened corners if it is meant to be held? Way to be completely misguided and jejune, Samsung.