Yesterday the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals their in-store retail display systems that are connected to each of their product tables that hold iDevices in place. Considering that this particular patent filing was made this past January, with some elements filed in 2014, it is unknown which new components Apple may have added to their display systems. For retail industry buffs, there's a lot to explore in this meaty patent filing.
Apple Invention Title: Display Systems & Methods
Apple states that a retailer may have a display model product that is representative of products that are available for purchase by a purchaser. In order to entice such a purchase, the retailer may make the display model available for use by the potential purchaser. To promote such use, a retailer may further desire to present the product in a consistent and aesthetically-pleasing way, thereby further enticing the potential purchaser to handle and test the item, and to minimize the interference of elements of a display stand with the potential purchaser's viewing and use of the product. The retailer, however, may desire to limit the ability of the potential purchaser to remove the display model from a display area (e.g., to prevent theft or other unauthorized use). To accomplish this, the retailer may use a display system or elements as described in this patent filing.
In some embodiments, a display system for displaying a product includes a retainer for retaining the product, the retainer including a retainer body, wherein at least a portion of the retainer body defines a hemispherical shape, and a bracket attached to the retainer body, the bracket including at least two bracket arms configured to extend around opposing sides of the product, and a display stem defining a recess at a proximal end thereof, the recess shaped to receive the hemispherical portion of the retainer body.
In some embodiments, a display system for displaying a product includes a retainer for retaining the product, the retainer including a retainer body having a plurality of first charging contacts on its outer surface, where at least a portion of the retainer body is hemispherical. The system may also include a display stem defining a recess shaped to receive the hemispherical retainer body, where the recess includes a plurality of second charging contacts. The first charging contacts and the second charging contacts may be in electrical communication when the retainer body is in the recess.
In some embodiments, a display system for displaying a product includes a retainer for retaining the product, the retainer including a retainer body having at least one first magnet coupled thereto, and a bracket attached to the retainer body, the bracket including at least two bracket arms configured to extend around opposing sides of the product, and a display stem defining a recess at a proximal end thereof, the recess defining an opening and least one second magnet disposed adjacent to the opening, wherein the at least one first magnet is configured to cause rotation of the retainer body to a predefined orientation when at least a portion of the retainer body is disposed within the recess of the display stem, if the retainer body is not in the predefined orientation, and wherein the at least one first magnet is configured to cause the rotation by magnetic attraction to the at least one second magnet.
Apple's patent FIG. 1 shows a display system holding a product; FIG. 4 shows a first perspective view of a retainer; and FIG. 7 shows an exploded view of a display system.
Apple's patent filing is detail rich for those wanting to further explore Apple's retail display system titled "Display Systems and Methods" in-depth. The filing has a total of 26 patent figures breaking down every major component associated with this system.
Apple credits Sheng Yang, Charles Schwalbach, Russel Heirakuji and Carly Marasco as the inventors of patent application 20150208826 which was originally filed in Q1 2015. Considering that this is a patent application, the timing of such a product to market is unknown at this time.
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