iPhones, iPads and… iBags?
Apple has just filed a patent for its new paper bags. Should the patent be granted?
Apple is well known for their eye capturing, innovative and intuitive products. Apple’s work has reinvigorated and shifted many markets such as the mobile technology industry with the iPhone and iPad, and the music industry with iTunes.
Apple have a history of patenting many innovative ideas, such as a patent to disable iPhone cameras at live performances to protect copyright owned by the performer. Recently, patents have been surfacing that appear to be linked to new products being worked on behind closed doors, such as an Apple Car. However, Apple’s latest patent application has surprised many about their next move – a paper bag.
Filed back in March of this year, the patent details a conventional paper bag with handles, formed of “white paper with at least 60% post-consumer content”. The patent for Apple’s new product, simply called “Bag”, has raised a few legal concerns as to whether they have the capacity and potential to patent something so commonly used and widespread.
What are Apple trying to patent?
The bag, at first glance, purports to be a typical bag made of solid bleached sulfate white paper with handles. However when reading further into the application, the scope is narrowed down to specific adhesives, materials and constructions that Apple seeks to patent.
What would this patent achieve for Apple?
The main reason why Apple would want to patent their new paper bag would be to protect their idea so it cannot be stolen by competing companies. A patent is a right granted by the government to an inventor allowing them exclusive rights over said idea and protection from all others who seek to copy or exploit said invention. It would be favourable for Apple, who seem to have invested many resources in creating ‘Bag,’ to protect their work. Important to note, the designers behind the bag have also worked on other Apple products such as their magnetic charging system.
Do you have an idea worth protecting? With LawPath, you can apply for a patent and one of our qualified patent attorneys will contact you to discuss the finer details of your application. To learn more about patent law, check out if you are eligible for a standard or innovative patent here.
If Apple was to see this patent approved by the US Patent Office, it is doubtful it would have a drastic and lasting impact on the paper bag industry, due to its specific construction. Apple have approximately 10,000 patents according to US Patent 100, an annual ranking of the world’s biggest US patent portfolios, and is growing at a rapid rate. But considering they managed to patent a rectangle with round corners and are yet to enforce it, the bag may share a similar fate.
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Logan is a Paralegal working in our content team, which aims to provide free legal guides to facilitate public access to legal resources. With a passion for commercial and media law, his research explores how the law is adapting to emerging technologies and how this affects consumers and businesses alike.