How can anyone in Apple, Samsung or any other tech...
How can anyone in Apple, Samsung or any other tech company claim to have originated any of this stuff? Touch screen tablet devices? Touch screen phones (in reality little more than shrunken touch screen tablets with phone capability)?
The concepts that these devices lean upon existed long before anyone had the technology necessary to put an actual device together. That's kind of the thing about science fiction, you know? PADDs, Tricorders, and so on and so forth. The concepts embodied in the fictional devices ultimately lead to real devices once the technology is there to support it.
As for obviousness, if you have a roughly pad sized touch screen device, and you're using a GUI related to a WIMP interface, then a grid of icons that you select by tapping is a completely obvious solution. So's that rectangular shape. I mean really none of this should be patentable at all, all this BS with software patents has gone too far, there are so many applications that the USPTO can't properly evaluate them, and then corporates choose to use these horribly weak, but granted, patents in legal action against their competition. Pretty bloody sad that they can;t compete with products and choose instead to compete with dubious patents in and attempt to bully competitors.
Pathetic. USPTO should be ashamed, US legislature should be ashamed, US courts should be ashamed, Apple should be ashamed. It's time that this nonsense stopped, patents are becoming meaningless.