Polaroid accuses GoPro of copying its Cube camera design

GoPro Hero 4 session hands on lens top angle
Bill Roberson/Digital Trends
Anyone familiar with Polaroid’s Cube camera (below) and GoPro’s more recently released Hero4 Session shooter (above) won’t have failed to notice the similarity between the two devices. Indeed, DT’s own Les Shu was quick to comment on how the Session looked “surprisingly similar” to Polaroid’s device in his review of GoPro’s camera published shortly after its launch in the summer, more than a year after Polaroid released the Cube.

Indeed, so similar are the two action cameras that Polaroid has decided to take the matter to court, claiming in a lawsuit that GoPro’s Session infringes on a design patent granted to Polaroid back in May.

Polaroid Cube corner angle full

Although GoPro’s Session is slightly larger than Polaroid’s Cube, the two devices are identical in shape, sport a minimalist design with curved edges, incorporate a lens on one side (yes, important if you’re building a camera), and include a button on the top enabling various functions.

The patent lawsuit was filed Tuesday in the U.S. District Court in Newark, N.J, by C&A Marketing Inc., now the sole maker of Polaroid-branded devices.

Lawyers acting for the company are aiming to secure a sales ban of GoPro’s diminutive box-shaped camera as well as financial damages that include profits from sales of the device, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Responding to C&A’s claim, California-based GoPro said that a number of  its own E.U. and U.S. patents related to its Session device demonstrate that it was working on the Hero4 Session “well before” its rival applied for its Cube patent and therefore long before Polaroid’s device landed in stores.

Now it’s up to a jury to examine the evidence and make a call, though as the Journal points out, siding with Polaroid could have real implications for other makers of similarly shaped cameras released over the last year, as it could embolden the company to go after them, too.

As for GoPro, the legal battle is a headache it can well do without; it’s not as if the Session is even a big hit for the company. Recently published financials revealed weak demand for the camera, a situation that caused the company to slash its price by $100, taking it to $299. Polaroid’s Cube is available for $100.

Product Review

The 2019 Porsche Macan S is a luxurious and quick SUV, but it's no road tripper

The roster of models challenging the Porsche Macan grows annually. The German firm updated its smallest, most affordable SUV with a new engine, more tech features, and subtle design tweaks to keep it looking fresh.
Computing

Apple MacBook Air vs. Microsoft Surface Pro 6

The MacBook Air was updated with more contemporary components and a more modern design, but is that enough to compete with standouts like Microsoft's Surface Pro 6 detachable tablet?
Mobile

The OnePlus 6T McLaren Edition comes with 10GB of RAM, and supercar style

OnePlus has partnered with McLaren F1, creating the OnePlus 6T McLaren Edition. With 10GB of RAM and all the usual top-level hardware, this new flagship killer comes with some new design touches.
Business

Chinese court upholds Qualcomm's complaint that Apple infringed on two patents

Apple is following the FTC's lead and has sued Qualcomm for a massive $1 billion in the U.S., $145 million in China, and also in the U.K., claiming the company charged onerous royalties for its patented tech.
Photography

The best mirrorless cameras pack all the power of a DSLR, minus the bulk

Mirrorless cameras offer a lot of photography firepower, inside a compact body. Explore the best mirrorless cameras, from the pro-level to the beginner-friendly shooters, in this guide.
Photography

Photography News: Startup redesigns tripod heads ‘inside out’ for more flexibility

Well, this doesn't look like the ball heads that we've seen before. Instead of designing a tripod ball head with a small cutout, the Colorado Tripod Company created one with most of the ball exposed, allowing for more possible angles.
Photography

MIT science photographer isn’t an artist, but her work could fill galleries

Felice Frankel is an award-winning photographer, but she doesn't consider herself an artist. As a science photographer, she has been helping researchers better communicate their ideas for nearly three decades with eye-catching imagery.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Folding canoes and ultra-fast water filters

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Photography

Leica targets street photographers with a pricey camera bundle

Described by the camera company as "your perfect companion in the city," Leica's Street Kit comprises a Leica CL camera body, a 23mm (35mm full-frame equivalent) F2 lens, batteries, a handgrip, and a black leather carrying strap.
Product Review

Meet Z6, the breakout star in Nikon's new mirrorless lineup

The Nikon Z6 is the sibling to the new mirrorless Z7 -- but for some photographers, the cheaper Z6 may be the better option. Read where the $2,000 camera beats the $3,400 one (and where it doesn’t) in our Nikon Z6 review.
Social Media

Snapchat facial recognition could soon power a new portrait mode, code suggests

Digging into Snapchat's code suggests a handful of upcoming camera features, including a portrait mode. The feature appears to use facial recognition A.I. to blur the background. The code also suggests an updated camera interface.
Social Media

#ThrowbackThursday is only the start: Instagram hashtags for every day of the week

Not getting your hashtag fill with #ThrowbackThursday or #ManCrushMonday? Here's a list of some of the more popular Instagram hashtags, so you can outfit your next post with the proper tag, regardless of what day it is.
Photography

From DSLRs to mirrorless, these are the best cameras you can buy right now

From entry-level models to full-frame flagships, many cameras take great photos and video. The best digital cameras, however, push the industry forward with innovative sensors and improved usability, among other things. Here are our…
Photography

Photographers can now customize the layout of Lightroom Classic controls

Tired of scrolling past Lightroom tools that you don't use? Adobe Lightroom Classic now allows users to reorganize the Develop panel. The update comes along with new sharing options in Lightroom CC, and updates to the mobile Lightroom app.