Apple's no stranger to being ripped off, with a history of experiencing the "sincerest form of flattery" starting with the Windows operating system, moving on through iPod clones and lightweight laptops. And they've been on both sides of lawsuits before, mostly dealing with their products' underpinnings. But now they're hitting back on the design front, filing a lawsuit against Samsung that covers "trade dress," the physical design of their products.
"It's no coincidence that Samsung's latest products look a lot like the iPhone and iPad, from the shape of the hardware to the user interface and even the packaging," an Apple representative told Mobilized. "This kind of blatant copying is wrong, and we need to protect Apple's intellectual property when companies steal our ideas."
...In addition to the patent and trademark claims, Apple also alleges infringement of the "trade dress" of the iPhone and iPad, a legal term meaning they sure look a whole lot alike. Apple charges that everything from the icons on the Galaxy screen to the way the phone is packaged infringe on Apple's designs."Samsung's Galaxy Tab computer tablet also slavishly copies a combination of several elements of the Apple Product Configuration Trade Dress," Apple says in its suit, noting that Samsung's tablet, like Apple's, uses a similar rectangular design with rounded corners, similar black border and array of icons....and our lawyers.
Samsung is thus far unrepentant and has vowed to "respond actively," whatever that means.
For those who are fans of mobile device litigation trails rendered into infographics, refer to this spate of flowcharts from last year.