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Apple wins patent on design of first-generation iPhone

updated 01:13 pm EST, Tue December 18, 2012

Jobs, Ive among credited names for design work

On top of two other wins today, the USPTO has also granted Apple a patent on the design of the first-generation iPhone. The filing is simply labeled Electronic Device, but is credited to 14 different inventors, including Apple co-founder Steve Jobs and lead designer Jonathan Ive. The iPhone was revealed in January 2007, and shipped in June.

Although some minor similarities remain, the design of the iPhone has changed dramatically over the years. Initially for instance the phone had a mostly rounded aluminum shell, with skinny plastic control buttons, and a 3.5-inch display. The iPhone 3G and 3GS switched to plastic shells; the 4 and 4S were equipped with flat glass backs, and also made the switch to metal buttons. The 5 is again using an aluminum body, but with a 4-inch screen, and design traits that are otherwise more closely linked to the 4S.

by MacNN Staff




  1. apostle

    Junior Member

    Joined: 04-16-08

    There are so many stories of companies being granted a patent, only to have it invalidated later on. An article on the patent process would be very interesting (costs, paperwork, review boards, searches for similar patents, why a patent is invalidated after it's been granted, etc...).

  1. Zanziboy

    Forum Regular

    Joined: 08-27-08

    There really needs to be patent reform in the US. There are too many vague patents making it difficult to patent specific implementations without someone claiming that it in some way is invalid. In fact, I find it amazing that the original iPhone patent may now become invalid although it's pretty obvious there was nothing ever invented that came close to the original iPhone even as described in the "949" patent.

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