People have long accused competitive notebook manufacturers for copying Apple
's MacBook Air design in some way or another, oftentimes shamelessly so. HP's Envy line looks entirely too much like a MacBook Pro, for example. And with the swarm of Ultrabooks taking over, well, let's just say there's some design influence going on there, arguably. Now, a newly granted patent could put Apple back into the legal spotlight, as if its ongoing fights with Motorola and Samsung aren't galvanizing enough.
Just this week, the US Patent and Trademark Office granted a superbly broad design patent to Apple, and the topic looks to be the MacBook Air's "wedge shape" form factor.
Apple has received patents before on the MacBook Air, but this one is so broad that it's making waves. In fact, it's so broad that it's hard to pinpoint what exactly it covers, and how Apple would prove that other Ultrabook makers infringed if it chose to do so. The company clearly isn't afraid of taking companies to court, even companies it partners with (like Samsung), but only time will tell if it'll use this as more ammunition.