@Piro - style over substance
That's sort of the point. Apple wants to figure out how to do things that don't compromise the design of their products. Most other CE companies design products that are functional and generally have little regard for style. They'd just tack some magnets onto the back of a tablet and call it good.
You may feel that style has no place in the products you buy, and don't understand why someone will pay more for a product on that basis - let alone items that are purely style like in the fashion world. However, just because you feel that way doesn't mean that others are wrong in feeling differently. Have a bigger world view than your own narrow minded biases.
That said, nothing in here appears to be original enough to deserve a patent, but if The Reg would pick and choose the latest patents from Microsoft, Nokia, Motorola, Samsung et al I'm sure they can find similarly silly patents they apply for. Apple may have more "style over substance" type patents than others, but that's not surprising since they're one of the few companies that considers style as important as functionality. Sony always did in the past, though less so these days, while other companies care in some of their products but not others. Then you have companies like Microsoft that seem to agree with your world view that style actually detracts from a product, or at least that's the only conclusion I can draw from looking at their previous attempts at a tablet before they just crossed an iPad and Galaxy Tab to create the Surface.