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Thread: Google VP Comments on Patent Wars: Google Didn't Think Rounded Corners Patentable

  1. Editor in Chief
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    Google VP Comments on Patent Wars: Google Didn't Think Rounded Corners Patentable

    David Lawee, Google’s (GOOG) vice president of corporate development, sat down for a video with Bloomberg recently, and during the interview weighed in on why Google was slow to protect itself during the heated patent wars that were mostly started by Apple. The bottom line is that Google used too much reason and logic. They didn't think that rounded corners were something that could earn a patent. Here are his comments,

    “We didn’t really believe rounded corners were patentable,” Lawee said. “We just didn’t buy into that notion of protecting your IP and it was a wake up call.”
    He further admitted that Google wasn't aggressive enough in patenting its intellectual property. Since their wake-up call, Google has done a much better job protecting itself and getting in the game, including of course the massive buyout of Motorola for their patent portfolio. The video wasn't something we could embed for security reasons, but you can find it at the source link below.

    I especially like his comment that the "...thermonuclear world is not the world we are going to live in." Enlightened view. It would be great if all the other tech companies held this same perspective.

    Source: BusinessInsider - Bloomberg TV
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  3. Droid Sensei
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    I don't think a lot of people thought you could patent it.
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    I only thought in a world like Fahrenheit 451 would such madness prevail.
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    I bet the Apple lawyers had an internal pool to see who could get the most ridiculous patent idea granted. "Rounded corners" I'm sure was a finalist.
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    Nor should you be able to patent rounded corners. I believe this shows the gaping holes in the US Patent office.
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  7. Master Droid
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    One thing that everyone is losing sight of......patents have a determinable life. Utility and plant patents are only good for 20 years from the date of filing, and design patents are only good for 14 years from the date of grant. For example, Apple's patent on pinch to zoom was filed in Dec 29, 2006 and issued on Oct 12, 2010. So that will patent will expire in Dec 2026. Apple's '889 rectangle with rounded corners patent is a design patent. That patent was filed March 17, 2004 and was issued May 10, 2005. So starting on May 10, 2019, everyone can start making rectangular devices with rounded corners to their hearts content and not worry about being sued.....that is unless Apple gets awarded a patent for a rectangle with slightly rounded corners.
    Last edited by jseah; 09-13-2012 at 06:26 AM.
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    Yes, because it makes sense that no one else should be able to use an industry standard and common sense application of styling until 2019 I'm fine with patents allowing for no one else to make exactly the same design as someone else, but what Apple is trying to pull is garbage. It's been said time and time again that it would be equivalent to Sony patenting the black rectangle that is the standard for flat panel televisions and forcing everyone else to pay to use it. Ridiculous, and utterly so.
    What is best in life? "To crush your enemies, to see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentations of their women."
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    That's like getting a patent for "A box shaped object that displays media".
    If you can't build it you shouldn't be using it.


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