August 24, 2011
The battle between Samsung and Apple over iDevice designs has taken a particularly interesting turn. In an opposition brief to Apple’s motion for a preliminary injunction in the United States, Samsung is using the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey as evidence that there was “prior art” for a certain iPad-related design patent, according to Foss Patents. In June, Apple filed paperwork against Samsung, which demanded some of its handset and tablet devices be withdrawn from market because they resembled the designs of both the iPhone and iPad. In particular, the Cupertino, California-based company went after Samsung’s Infuse 4G, Galaxy S 4G, Droid Charge, and Galaxy Tab 10.1. Now, Samsung is claiming that Apple didn’t actually invent the iPad's design. The company is pointing to the 1968 Stanley Kubrick film as evidence. According to the brief:
Attached hereto as Exhibit D is a true and correct copy of a still image taken from Stanley Kubrick's 1968 film "2001: A Space Odyssey." In a clip from that film lasting about one minute, two astronauts are eating and at the same time using personal tablet computers. The clip can be downloaded online at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JQ8pQVDyaLo. As with the design claimed by the D’889 Patent, 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.Who knows if this type of “evidence” will be enough to end Apple’s claim that Samsung is copying its two main iDevices. Our best bet is that it won’t be enough to end the lawsuit, but you never know. We’ll keep you updated.