Apple has been granted a design patent of the iPad, which is a rectangle with round corners. What has been patented is not the screen or anything else but the edges which is the ornamental design of the iPad. You might have asked yourself, what the heck? Yes, it is unbelievable but true. The design for a rectangular device with round corners is now Apple’s property. In 2010, the fruit company has filed a patent D670, 286, which has been issued by USPTO on November 6th describing the ornamental design of a portable device.
Now it seems like most of the tablet makers can potentially be sued by Apple for making device that look like iPad. But, is that really possible? Probably, not. Many devices may have a look similar to iPad but the patent is only about the outer edge of the iPad. Presently the patent is not specific enough to be used against the similar look of tablets. It is only likely to be against tablets that have a 4:3 screen ratio. This might not be of much use to Apple as most of the Android tabs sport wider screens with 16:9 or 16:10 ratio.
It is a big ridiculous patent, which might cause head scratching for everybody, Apple and other companies. A simple shape patent seems to be odd and one can only wonder if Apple uses this against its competitors. But keeping the track record of apple in mind, it might use the patent in anger. Apple can use the granted patent only for the exact design of iPad, so that no other company can make the same shaped tablet and sell it in the market.
American public are fed up of the patent wars going on recently and how much more can they take? Samsung recently accused Apple for its attempt to claim the rectangle ownership and Apple has taken one step ahead and won the patent for the shape.
One can only wait and see what fire this patent can light in the tech world in the future.