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U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Issues the 700,000th Design Patent

March 26, 2014

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on March 26 celebrated the issuance of the 700,000th design patent, which covers the ornamental design for a “Hand-Held Learning Apparatus.” The design patent was awarded to Jason Avery of Berkeley, California, who assigned it to Leapfrog Enterprises, Inc.

In a press release commemorating this design patent’s issuance, Deputy Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and USPTO Deputy Director Michelle Lee focused on the importance of this milestone to American innovation. “Design patents play a critical role in ensuring that America’s intellectual property system continues to be a catalyst for American companies and entrepreneurs to innovate,” Lee said. “The design area has increased from twenty five and a half thousand applications in 2009 to just over thirty five thousand filings in 2013.”

“Protecting and promoting our idea-driven economy is essential to keeping America open for business,” said U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker. “The USPTO plays a major role in serving our nation’s innovators by granting them the intellectual property rights they need to secure investment capital, build companies and bring their products and services to the global marketplace.”

Mr. Avery’s celebrated innovation is embodied in Leapfrog’s LeapsterGS™, which has 40 different learning and play experiences for children ages four to nine, and features a hi-res finger-touch screen, and Flash and 3D. “For nearly 20 years, LeapFrog has been a leader in life-changing educational entertainment experiences through innovation-forward solutions such as LeapsterGS and we are honored to have our device issued the 700,000th design patent,” said John Barbour, LeapFrog chief executive officer.

A design patent is directed to the visual ornamental characteristics embodied in, or applied to, an article of manufacture. To learn more about design patents, please visit the USPTO’s resource page.


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