Apple counter Samsung claims, reveals 2005 ‘Purple’ iPhone prototype design

“When we last checked in on the Apple vs Samsung trial, filings revealed Samsung’s aggressive plans to beat Apple, but also suggested a glimpse at Apple’s Sony-inspired design process,” Nate Ralph reports for The Verge.

“Apple claims otherwise: the latest documents have revealed prototype ‘Purple,’ a concept device that bears all of the hallmarks of the iPhone while predating the ‘Jony’ concept that suggested Sony’s ethos had heavy influence in Apple’s internal brainstorming sessions,” Oliver reports. “‘Purple’ dates back to August 2005 — months before the Jony prototype was originally designed.”

Oliver reports, “According to the documents, Shin Nishibori’s Sony-style touches were simply “an ‘enjoyable’ side project,” embellishments on a concept Apple had already designed. The documents contend that Purple remained free of the alleged Sony inspirations, ultimately giving birth to the iPhone in 2006 (and looking decidedly like the iPhone 4)… Judge Lucy Koh has now issued an order that Samsung will not be permitted to present evidence during the trial on the Sony-inspired designs for the iPhone.”

Apple iPhone prototype codenamed Purple

Read more in the full article here.


      1. What good is the beautiful design work if it’s dropped and the screen or case cracks?

        I’ve seen a number of cracked, “naked” iPhone 4 or 4S, and believe me they look a lot uglier than any case–it’s a constant, visible reminder that every iPhone fragile.

          1. I only have one case, black translucent. Yeah it hides the shiny a bit, but there’s plenty of naked iPhones around that people can look admiringly at.

            It adds 1mm thickness to all sides but reduces the chances of it slipping from my hands in the first place (they are often oily and sweat too much).

            It also means it’ll be in pristine condition during the only time that its beauty matters to anyone else: if/when I sell it.

        1. My fist gen iPhone flew out of a case that was attached to my belt, face planted and the screen cracked. I was running at the time.

          That was the first, the last, and the only time I have dropped an iPhone. I didn’t drop it my case did.

          My new belt holder has Velcro.

          1. You probably had a hard plastic shell case. Mine is form-fitting silicone (not rubber, which hardens and/or loses its form faster), an iSkin solo. IIRC of all the iPhone case materials, silicone is also second only to leather in absorbing fall impacts.

            It’s never going to fall out of my case (an iSkin solo) by accident–I have a hard enough time removing it manually.

      2. Steve Jobs didn’t use a case…. and I to this day still refuse to use one. I have dropped mine a couple times and its fine. I don’t like wrapping it up in ugly and they always add bulk to the phone which defeats the purpose of having it. Therefore, I would like a different option like a dark candy red apple color. Im sure others would like some form of other color but that is my favorite…

        1. Steve Jobs would never need to pay for a replacement phone, if it ever broke during a fall.

          I don’t know about you, but me, I have better things to spend $200 on (or $500+ if the carrier doesn’t have an accidental damage replacement option).

      3. My first iPhone, the one I stood in line for 8 hours on day 1 back in 2007, did not have a case and I didn’t think I needed one. Then I took a flight and somehow dropped the iPhone at my feet on the plane. During take-off, the iphone slid back on the floor and landed at the feet of a person who decided that they were given a present and kept my precious, new iPhone and I was out $652.38. Lesson? get a case with some friction so the phone can’t run away from you.

        1. This has to be a joke, montex…

          You could have asked a flight attendant to make an announcement. If that did not work, you should have asked someone nearby to call your number and then chased down the ring. If your phone was turned off, and nothing else worked, then you should have stood up, turned around, and made a public announcement that you had dropped your phone, it slid towards the back of the plane, and you would greatly appreciate its return. If that did not work, then report it as a theft and use the app to find it.

  1. Aren’t you just waiting for the first real hammer blow to Samsung’s forehead. I guess they know they’ll eventually get fined but the sad thing is the fine is just the cost of doing business for them.

  2. I would love to see samsung get slammed with a huge fine and a stop in production of their products. Along with the other copiers out there. On the other hand its kind of hard to sue people that they copied your phone design… imagine ford suing everyone for copying them with a metal container with 4 wheels that takes you places. At some point you can’t sue for crap.

    1. I remember the Apple Event where Steve introduced the iPhone. He made it clear that there were lots of new innovations in the design and Apple had gone to great lengths to secure patents to protect their intellectual property. Patent law is usually pretty simple – show you thought of it first and anyone else who uses it owes you their profits.

      BTW – Ford did not invent the automobile, the German’s did. Henry Ford invented the assembly line for mass producing Automobiles.

          1. So true…and showing the world it could be done. Great innovators take bold steps…everyone else is essentially a lemming, waiting for others to jump off the cliff.

    2. “…At some point you can’t sue for crap.”
      If you are in “…design…” you might want to study laws and previous litigation on trade dress.

    3. Gawd luvva duck…just quit already with the strawman meme.
      Firstly, it’s not about rounded corners, Apple patenting the rectangle or using a touch screen. It’s about copying Apple’s concept. If Toyota released a car that to all intents and purposes, but for a badge on the bonnet and a name plate on the rear, was indistinguishable from a Mustang, then yes, they could, should and would sue for trade dress infringement. Same deal for Apple’s iPhone. If along the way Apple can prove that Samsung ‘knowingly’ copied the iPhone, then maybe triple damages cou
      D be awarded to Apple.
      Secondly, the ‘crap’ can be expunged here:
      Doesn’t anyone ‘Search’ for ‘facts’ anymore?

  3. Lets go right to common sense then… I’ve seen many places ripping off shoe designs that clearly look like an exact copy of another minus the logo. Can someone sue for that? Vans and many other companies would make a killing if they could sue other companies making duplicate shoes and putting a different logo on it.. Its basically what samsung did for their iphone killer. But my question is… at what point will the government or courts say.. ok this is insane suing someone for having round corner app icons, or a rectangular shaped phone. I’d love to see Apple beat everyone down and win on the cases but im pretty sure someone is going to start attacking the patent laws which I think google has done to make Apple seem uncompetitive and a monopoly, they they all do the same thing.. actually.. they all steal from apple then try claiming they aren’t giving others a chance.

    I’ve seen so many cars these days that are sometimes hard to tell who they are from until you see their brand. Almost every SUV looks identical in design especially the small rav 4 types.

    Does someone hold a patent for bicycle design? Other than a few frame alterations… every mountain bike, bmw, or street look almost exactly the same. But someone out there made it first.

    1. I know this will sound racist, but the look-a-likes in the automobile industry are almost all from…wait for it…Korea.

      BMW, Mercedes, Audi, Mini–all have distinct designs across their entire lines. Even Ford, GM, and Chrysler are easy to spot from a mile away.

      Now look at the models from Kia and Hyundai from the past few years. Almost direct copies of models if Audi, Mercedes, etc. there are few, if any, unifying features (grills, headlamp/taillight arrangements, hood shapes, etc) across either Korean company’s line.

      What is it about original design that Korean companies just don’t get?

      1. Very true. In a way its relates to the samsung case a lot. People are being fooled into getting some crappier version of a great product. But you indeed get what you pay for. Sure that kia may look like a jaguar or audi.. but its still a kia.

  4. A question to all people here. What if Apple stop innovating and stop developing new product? Will Google or even Samsung will take the lead in future innovation? Maybe there will be 13″ screen Galaxy S13 in year 2023?

      1. Exactly. But Samsung think they are “Innovating” by twisting the screen size, to fit more core processors, faster connection and larger battery.

        However, they are not innovating anything, they just keep copy what Apple created, and try hard to fit everything left over in their factory, scramble all parts together and release them once every 6 months.

  5. If Apple were to stop designing the smartphone and computer industry would stop moving forward and you would see stagnation just like there was before Apple got back in the game. There would be a few iterations of the current design and then things would go to ugly designs and poor user experience again. These companies live by continually producing new versions of product. They have to because their current versions become boring and useless very quickly!

    Apple is now the design center for the entire industry…. look at MSoft.. they tried not to knock off Apple and the best they could do was Metro! A design that is getting poor reviews before it is even released!

  6. I Love the way Apple thinks.
    1) Who is the most stylish tech company: SONY
    2) IF Sony were to build a phone, what might it look like ?

    Similar thinking took place when apple visityed Xerox Parc.
    Xerox had the best style for a desktop system, but werent aiming at the Personal computre user.
    Apple look at it and said, since there is no product focused on the home user, lets go ahead and build it.
    What would Xerox build if they focused on the Home user.
    There came Mac OS.
    Who has the most stylish TV Design: SAMSUNG, SONY
    What would they build if the were at the top of their game and focused on the internet, and ultimate usability ?
    Apple TV (46 inch)

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