back to article Apple drops 'thermonuclear' patent bombshell

Apple has launched a new patent assault on its competitors, one that appears to unleash the nukes that Steve Jobs reportedly told his biographer Walter Isaacson he was going to drop on Google's Android. "I'm going to destroy Android, because it's a stolen product," the late Apple cofounder told the author of the überpopular …


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  1. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge

    Well, Huey Lewis is stuffed.

    And so too are 19 American states.

    Will they stop at nothing?!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      APRIL FOOL APRIL FOOL.........

      El Reg you B*****ds!!!!!

      1. Yamal Dodgy Data

        Re: APRIL FOOL

        still you can't be too sure when patent law is involved.

        1. Steve Evans

          Re: APRIL FOOL

          Too true, best we go check that patent number, I wouldn't put anything past the US patent issuing morons!

        2. Primus Secundus Tertius Silver badge

          Re: APRIL FOOL

          The Onion reported some years ago, but not on 1st April, that Microsoft had patented 0s and 1s.

      2. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge

        Re: APRIL FOOL

        Yes, hence the joke alert icon.

        This happens every year on 1/4. Do we really need some bore to announce to the world that they know what the date is every damn time?

      3. Ignazio

        Re: APRIL FOOL

        They had me at bisecting diagonals.

    2. Bob Vistakin

      Re: Well, Huey Lewis is stuffed.

      This is pretty funny, but don't forget the real joke here - teasing the fanbois about an iPhone5, then releasing a mere software update in the same case and calling it a new phone, then doing exactly the same with the iPad. How long before the users are blamed for holding that wrong each time they burn themselves? Anyway, this is surely the real secret to Apples wealth - by targeting those with lower IQ's, their isheep literally will buy anything they're told to.

      Hats off El Reg, nice one. Could have posted a report on the stellar WP7 figures along with Nokias employee satisfaction rating being the highest in the tech business, too. But only today, natch.

      1. Yamal Dodgy Data

        Re: Well, Huey Lewis is stuffed.

        Ouch ! .. look at those down votes

        the fanboi's really don't like it when a comment cuts close to the bone

        1. Matt Bryant Silver badge

          Re: Re: Well, Huey Lewis is stuffed.

          A sense of humour? Unfortunately, there is no Apple app for that.

      2. Walt French

        Re: Well, Huey Lewis is stuffed.

        Way to totally miss the spirit of the post, by spewing retreaded, same old blather in a pompous, self-important, preachy, superior tone. Oh, at least you included some totally made-up, likely false facts; too bad they ALSO were condescending at best, the very opposite of funny.

      3. JDX Gold badge

        Re: Well, Huey Lewis is stuffed.

        speaking of sheep, what about the herd mentality to jump on the "Apple users are stupid" bandwagon?

        1. Miek

          Re: Well, Huey Lewis is stuffed.

          I guess it's far too easy a stereotype to fall into.

        2. N13L5

          jump on the "Apple users are stupid" bandwagon?

          What do you need explained about:

          Reduced functionality to avoid overtaxing the user?

    3. Arctic fox

      Well, April Fool joke or not is there not something familiar in the attitude here?


      "It's still a rectangle," he sniffed. "And we own the rectangle."

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      the real April Fool...

      Is telling us that we would get the Ice Cream Sandwich update in the first quarter of this year!

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Well, Huey Lewis is stuffed.

      Tomorrow, I am going to get a patent on using letters and numbers on an electronic display. I am going to be rich! Yeaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

    6. Euripides Pants Silver badge

      Re: 19 American States stuffed

      Nope, just Colorado and Wyoming - they're the Rectangle States

  2. This post has been deleted by its author

  3. Jim_aka_Jim

    Had me till the description of the patient: look at the date people.

    1. Thomas 4


      ...but I'm sure I wasn't the only that had to stop and wonder for a moment.

      1. Blain Hamon

        The date is correct, and the patent is real...

        If you search the USPTO, there IS a patent number US001042012, dated Oct 22, 1912. Only it's for an air valve for radiators. Ah, the good old days when patents were actually about real things,

  4. beast666

    Nice try...

    Not as good as The Guardian's attempt tho... Shaun Ryder as adviser for the govt... oh how we all laughed.

    1. Andrew Moore Silver badge

      Re: Nice try...

      No, that one's true.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not fair

    It's still March in California, you scumbags ;-)

    1. David Gosnell

      Re: Not fair

      Makes up for Google's (rather cute) Quest Maps launching early?

  6. stuartnz

    Thoroughly duped - well played! I shall now slink off and try to double my neuron count by growing another one.

  7. 0_Flybert_0


    almost tricked me into installing quick time !

  8. William Boyle
    Thumb Up

    Happy April 1!

    Har de har de har... :-)

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I'm pretty sure there is prior art for this joke...

    Such as in your very own comment columns every time this has come up for discussion...

  10. Drefsab


    the daft thing is this story is totally believable, I could see apple doing just this if they thought for a second they could get away with it.

    1. Spikehead
      Thumb Up

      Re: meh

      The even dafter thing is, I can see the US Patent Office granting this patent!

  11. gujiguju

    Apple commented to...

    You almost had me...until you mentioned that Apple commented to you and answered your queries.

    That ain't gonna happen for a while longer, me thinks. ;)

    1. BorkedAgain
      Thumb Up

      Re: Apple commented to...

      Yup. That was the only part of the whole article I couldn't believe...

  12. Colin Brett

    Publish and be damned

    I suggest we let this story go viral and see how many others pick it up and run with it.

    Links on FB, Twitter, Linked In ...

    Spawn of Satan because it's Apple, right?


    1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. quartzie

      Re: Publish and be damned

      publish it on any other day and you'll surely find enough people believing it - especially with Cupertino's track record.

  13. Jeroen Braamhaar
    Thumb Up

    I call April Fools. Ingeniously worded though!

  14. eSeM


  15. Anonymous Coward


    Well done El Reg!

    You nearly had me until you said Sewell responded to you!

  16. volsano

    Merely a smoke screen

    This jokesuit is merely a toe in the water by Apple whose real atomic patent is the one that controls the use of the letter i ("whether lowercase, capitalized, iconificated, or otherwise embellished" to quote the patent) to start the name of a product or company or "other assemblage of humans".

    Intel, ICI; Ice cream, Instant whip; Ireland, Iran: just a few of the well-known brands at risk from this patent.

    Worse, it makes a general claim to the whole art of beginning a word with a letter at all. Some say this will drive all latinate alphabet users to adopt Chinese, at least in commercial writing and advertising.

  17. Number6

    Ah yes...

    I'd forgotten it was that day. Entirely plausible until it got to the bit about the rectangle, at which point I woke up a bit more and realised the date.

  18. Edward Hull

    You got me.


    The register posts so little at the weekends, I presumed it was a Friday entry...

    Then I believed it because it sounds so typical of the apple v the world cases...

    Then I read the date.

    Icon, because I do.

  19. VWDan
    Thumb Up


    But I miss the days when this joke would be completely obvious, rather than one you have to check out/ Let's face it, they really would do it if they could.

  20. JOKM

    So Square

    THe scary thing is, how close to the truth this is. Patent law was meant to protect the individual inventor and instead its used as a stick to beat him with.

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Well played

    9 paras in before the oddities reached a threshold and I checked the date.

    All too believable, though, isn't it?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Well played

      Only if you don't understand patent law

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: Well played

        The evidence appears to indicate that no one, least of all the USPTO, understand patent law.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Margaret Thatcher is dead

    imagine my disappointment

  23. ChrisM

    Spoiled a bit by the linked story at the bottom.... but as said above, the game was up when you mentioned Apple responding


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