US businessman sues Apple for $10 bn on copying designs

Apple iPhone user
A Florida-based businessman has filed a $10 billion lawsuit against Apple alleging that the technology giant stole his designs from a utility patent he filed in 1992 to make iPhone, iPad and iPod devices.

Thomas S. Ross claimed in his lawsuit that Apple’s devices are derivatives of his technical drawings’ first sketch he submitted with the US Copyright Office as part of his patent application for an “Electronic Reading Device”(ERD) 24 years ago, tech website Quartz reported.

“The application evidenced that Ross was the first to file a device so designed and aggregated as to have created a novel combination of media and communication tools that Ross called ERD, and whose identity was, since then, hijacked and exploited by Apple’s iPhones, iPods, iPads and, others,” the lawsuit read.

Ross’s concept, which never went further than the design stage, would allow a user to read news articles and view images and videos on a flat touchscreen surface, the Guardian reported.

Ross’s patent application was abandoned in 1995 by USPTO after the businessman failed to pay the fees. In 2014, Ross also filed to copyright his technical drawings with the US Copyright Office.

Besides $10 billion compensation, Ross is seeking 1.5 percent royalty on all future iOS device sales and a jury trial.