Posted September 3, 2009 9:05 am by with 5 comments

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One of the secrets to Google’s massive success is not the immense size of its search index, but the sparse design of it’s homepage. A design that is now officially patented!

From now on, if you launch a search engine, it had better not use a homepage design that contains the bolded elements below:

It might have taken Google 5 years to get the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to issue the patent, but issued it is. Of course, even Google doesn’t sit on a winning homepage design. In the five years it’s taken the USPTO to grant the trademark, the search giant has tweaked the design some.

Now all we need is some brave soul to test how far Google will go to enforce the trademark. It’s going to be hard for Google to enforce a patented search interface, when even it’s current homepage looks different.

Any legal eagles wish to way in on this?


  • I understand getting a patent for the underlying technology, but the interface? Maybe this is naivete speaking (it certainly could be) but isn’t this similar to a book publisher trying to patent the structure of a paperback?

  • So is Google going to invent a time machine so that it can go back into the past and take on the simple search interfaces that preceded it?

    The USPTO needs to update its research tools.

  • Pingback: Google Patents Simple Search | Search engine optimization live today()

  • I Wouldn’t of thought it would be possible to grant a patent like that>

  • I don’t think google will enforce their patent legally unless one of their major competitors infringe on it. It will extremely hard and a waste of resources to go after all of the small guys.