Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 18th Apr 2011 21:29 UTC
Legal Well. Raise your hands if you didn't see this one coming. Nobody is safe from Apple's and Microsoft's legal crusade against Android, not even Samsung, which supplies a lot of chips to Apple. Apple has sued Samsung for copying Cupertino's look and feel in various Samsung devices. This is about as surprising as the tides rolling in. Update: And Samsung's going to strike back. Hit 'm hard, Samsung. I don't like you anymore than any of these other patent trolls, but maybe we'll finally see it all crash and burn.
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Member since:

If I create a new car, Mercedes shouldn't be able to sue me, but if I create a new car that looks like their SLK, then I think they do have the right to protect that (even if it doesn't drive like one).

I don't know if it is illegal or not here, but I do certainly think it shouldn't be: as long as you don't actually try to sell it as a Mercedes SLK or use their logos you should be allowed to make it downright 100% identical excluding the logos and any possible extra branding.

After all, there are only so many ways of making something and if we allow companies to sue people for creating something even remotely similar we'll sooner or later be in a situation where even creating a simple box is illegal. Besides I just do not support the idea of limiting what one can create as long as they don't try to pose it off as someone else's work.

Reply Parent Score: 5

dragos.pop Member since:

Not really:

1) The design is influence by technical decisions, some of them possibly covered by patents. I'm talking about stuff that influence air flow, cooling... If there was a research, it can be transformed into a patent.

For example if they used the touch wheel from a classic iPod there would be (rightly) a patent infringement.

2) This is intellectual property after all (kind of) and is protected by copyright (just like software or photographs). So you are not allowed to copy it, but you can use it as an inspiration. If the differences are below a certain percent is considered intellectual property theft.

3) Some design elements can be registered as trade mark (for example the front grid from a BMW can be registered like that).

But both touch wiz and Galaxy S case design differ more than the minimum required from apple products.
The influence is clear, but there is no copy and I don't think branding materials wore used.

Sure both iPhone 3G and Galaxy S have round edges and silver frame, big touchscreen and a button in the middle. But all modern TV-s have a glossy black frame and LCD screen. And I don't want to get into mouse, video cameras...

The apps on both phones have icons on a grid, on multiple screens. But the grid is arranged just like palm and symbian and nokia S40 and... and old Ericsson phones with monochrome display. But Xerox original GUI had icons, so xerox original design was copied by all modern devices from computers to TV interfaces.

Reply Parent Score: 1

unoengborg Member since:

Everty company should try to make products that stand out in its own right. Regardless, if Samsung Galaxy differs enough from iPhone for Apple to have a case, I would it is a bad idea to be to close to sombody elses design. Even though the differences actually are quite big at a closer look, I still think of an iPhone when I see the Galaxy.

If I was head of Samsung I would like the consumers to buy Galaxy because it is a Samsung and a good phone not because they have mistaken it for a product of one of my competitors.

Reply Parent Score: 2