Chinese iPhone cloner claims Apple stole its design

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Does this look like the iPhone 6 to you? Photo: 100+
Does this look like the iPhone 6 to you? Photo: 100+

Apple is no stranger to filing lawsuits against iPhone cloners, but in a twisted turn of events, an Chinese Android manufacturer with a handset that looks suspiciously similar to the iPhone 6 is claiming that Apple ripped off its designs.

Little known Chinese smartphone maker DigiOne published a letter today that the company’s lawyers sent to Apple in September. The letter contests that “the design of Apple’s mobile device with the brand name “iPhone 6”, may infringe on one of Baili’s Chinese patents” filed in January of 2014.

Digione’s cheap handset, which is being sold by subsidiary brand 100+, was granted the patent in July. The patent in question does look similar to an iPhone, in that it features a device that is thin and rectangular shaped, with a flat back, rounded edges, and glass screen.

Check out their weird ad for the V6 see for yourself:

100+ V6 vs. iPhone 6. Who's the copycat? Photo: Buster Hein/Cult of Mac
100+ V6 vs. iPhone 6. Who’s the copycat? Photo: Buster Hein/Cult of Mac

From the front, the iPhone 6 and 100+ V6 look kind of similar. But after spending a whole three minutes cruising 100+’s website, I noticed a few big differences:

  • The speaker is in the back.
  • It doesn’t have a Touch ID-like button.
  • The flash is below camera lens (iPhone’s has always been on the right).
  • The power button and volume rocker are on the right side.
  • No Antenna lines on the back.
  • The camera lens doesn’t protrude.
  • It runs a crap ass Baidu-version of Android.

Also, why did they make their bezel the exact same width as the iPhone’s? If anything, their phone looks like it was stolen inspired by the original iPhone, and the iPhone 6 revisits the iconic smartphone form factor Apple popularized.  I’m sure Apple’s lawyer got a good laugh when they decided to Google just who the hell 100+ is and saw their marketing is a total ripoff of the iPhone’s.

The V6 has been on sale since May of 2014 and features a 5.5-inch display, 2GB of RAM, 13MP camera, and up to 32GB of storage. Like the iPhone, it also comes in white, black, silver, and gold colors.

The full letter Digione’s lawyers sent Apple can be read below:

letter

 

Via: Macworld

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  • alencooper42

    If I could show y

  • CelestialTerrestrial

    Well, I’m sure the iPhone 6 case leaks that were going on might have given them plenty of time to copy it and release theirs before Apple to make it APPEAR like they were first. The leaked Apple cases did come out long before these so-called original phone designs. So it’s VERY possible that they were copying Apple’s prototypes and just spit theirs out before the predetermined Apple launch date. Apple really has to clamp down on their own internal leakage problems that’s probably taking place at one of their outsource companies. Maybe things like this is what leads some of the Foxconn workers to commit suicide since they might be the culprits about to get sussed out. At least that’s a possible scenario. I know that’s harsh, but you can’t rule it out.

    • PMB01

      Even if that were true, those case designs would’ve been already patented by Apple by then.

      China has no respect for trademark and patent laws so Apple would do good just to throw that letter away. They probably did, which is why DigiOne is publishing the letter to begin with.

  • Tero

    Well.. It just happens that it really doesn’t matter on who was first or last. The main thing which matters is that if there is a court case here it will be held in China and not in Apples backyard US. So this time it might be still that daddy is not going to save Apple (big target, easy to cash some money out). So in the reality it does not matter who patented what and when.. main thing is that now there is Chinese patent vs Apple.

  • legzzzz

    Well, strange: when Apple sued Samsung, running Android or lack of Home button was not the case :)

  • TcinAtl

    Chinese and Intellectual Property have nothing to do with each other.

  • Chris

    This is hilarious because it looks like DigiOne stole apples iPhone 3G design.

  • aardman

    This is from the same school of brazen shamelessness as those people who walked up to Amway’s branch offices in China years ago with sacks of empty cleaning product containers and with a straight face demanded their satisfaction-guaranteed refund because they weren’t satisfied with the product.

    There’s something about being raised in a communist regime and being shameless, amoral, and money-grubbing. Here’s another one: http://rt.com/news/russia-consulate-medicaid-fraud-783/

  • PlsGetReal

    Apple started the whole litigious ball rolling with Samsung…

    “Closely comparing Apple’s patented design with Samsung’s products
    reinforces the conclusion of substantial similarity. Samsung copied
    every major element of Apple’s patented design:
    a flat, clear, black-colored, rectangular front surface with four evenly rounded corners;
    an inset rectangular display screen centered on the front surface that
    leaves very narrow borders on either side of the display screen and
    substantial borders above and below the display screen;

    and a rounded, horizontal speaker slot centered on the front surface above
    the display screen,
    where the rectangular front surface is otherwise substantially free of ornamentation outside of an optional button area centrally located below the display.”

    Rounded corners….?????

    • DarthDisney

      Samsung is one of the most corrupt corporations you deal with, and you think they are somehow innocent? Please.

      • … … …

        How does that proof-less accusation influence that Apple pretty much won thing about alikeness of design over… ROUNDED CORNERS?

    • Tallest Skil

      You’re completely and utterly psychotic. Take your delusions preferably to a mental institution, but at least somewhere else.

    • sigzero

      The fact that you say “rounded corners” means you have no clue.

  • DarthDisney

    In July? That just means they saw it leaked.

  • tralalalalalala50

    It’s like when a thief gets injured on your property and sues you.

    Ohh China…

  • Marucins

    I wonder where were these experts and Finder smallest differences when Apple to the applause of the whole reserve complained about the outrageous Samsung Galaxy S2 resemblance to the iPhone 4? Where was this bunch of hypocrites? iPhone 6 is not at all similar to the 100 + V6, but it was a brazen SGS2 copy 4S, right? Then we all saw a perfect likeness, and now caught up with their night blindness? Then, the presence or absence of Android Home button was not any argument, and now they are? And you can quote again the above list of differences, eh?

  • Aannddyy

    The case will depend completely on which part of the Chinese government places pressure on the judge deciding the case. Place your bribes wisely.

  • Jcole

    How to sell a junky phone:
    1. Watch for iPhone leaks
    2. Release the phone before Apple
    3. Try to sue Apple
    4. All the bloggers announce it
    5. Everyone googles you and shares the bloggers posts
    6. Get popular
    7. $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

  • Tommy Peters

    When Rockefeller whispered to Chou En-Lai that it was China’s turn to be the ‘new West’ he did not have this in mind. Seriously folks, give Baili its due. The 6 does feel ‘unApple’ to begin with!

  • Nick

    I don’t know where the asians-have-small-genitals stereotype comes. They clearly have huge balls to try and pull s**t like this.