Apple's Argument re Validity of D'677 Patent

Apple argued that Samsung’s invalidity challenges would not likely succeed at trial (Court Order Denying Motion for Preliminary Injunction, 9). As mentioned in a previous post, Apple’s argument section on the validity of D’677 is rather sparse. However, we have outlined the main points here.

According to Apple, none of Samsung’s previously identified prior art posed a danger to the validity of the D’677s patent. Moreover, during the prosecution of the design patent, the PTO had granted the patent after considering a substantial volume of prior art references. Apple then proceeded to point to the ‘overwhelming public and media reaction to the revolutionary and distinctive look of the iPhone as support for its argument about the novelty of Apple’s D’667 patent (Apple’s Motion for a Preliminary Injunction, 17).

The cited New York Times review of the iPhone analogized Apple to Cinderella’s fairy godmother, stating that Apple had effected a “transformation of a homely and utilitarian object, like a pumpkin or a mouse, into something glamorous and amazing, like a carriage or fully accessorized coachman.” Per Apple’s view, this review and the general media and public reaction constituted secondary considerations that demonstrated the non-obviousness of its D’677 patent. Secondary considerations include things like: commercial success; long felt industry need; failure of others; skepticism in industry; praise of others; copying of invention by others.  Secondary considerations can prove that an invention was non-obvious, and Apple used the news review and general media/public reaction to do just that. 

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