US20140069825A1 - Protective case and methods of making - Google Patents

Protective case and methods of making Download PDF

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Publication number
US20140069825A1
US20140069825A1 US14/022,207 US201314022207A US2014069825A1 US 20140069825 A1 US20140069825 A1 US 20140069825A1 US 201314022207 A US201314022207 A US 201314022207A US 2014069825 A1 US2014069825 A1 US 2014069825A1
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United States
Prior art keywords
protective case
cover
case
impact regions
thickness
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Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Abandoned
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US14/022,207
Inventor
Maria E. Macrina
Richard L. Garrard
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G-Form LLC
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G-Form, LLC
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Priority to US201261698563P priority Critical
Application filed by G-Form, LLC filed Critical G-Form, LLC
Priority to US14/022,207 priority patent/US20140069825A1/en
Publication of US20140069825A1 publication Critical patent/US20140069825A1/en
Assigned to G-Form, LLC reassignment G-Form, LLC ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST (SEE DOCUMENT FOR DETAILS). Assignors: GARRARD, RICHARD L., MACRINA, MARIA E.
Application status is Abandoned legal-status Critical

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    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65DCONTAINERS FOR STORAGE OR TRANSPORT OF ARTICLES OR MATERIALS, e.g. BAGS, BARRELS, BOTTLES, BOXES, CANS, CARTONS, CRATES, DRUMS, JARS, TANKS, HOPPERS, FORWARDING CONTAINERS; ACCESSORIES, CLOSURES, OR FITTINGS THEREFOR; PACKAGING ELEMENTS; PACKAGES
    • B65D81/00Containers, packaging elements, or packages, for contents presenting particular transport or storage problems, or adapted to be used for non-packaging purposes after removal of contents
    • B65D81/02Containers, packaging elements, or packages, for contents presenting particular transport or storage problems, or adapted to be used for non-packaging purposes after removal of contents specially adapted to protect contents from mechanical damage
    • B65D81/022Containers made of shock-absorbing material
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A45HAND OR TRAVELLING ARTICLES
    • A45CPURSES; LUGGAGE; HAND CARRIED BAGS
    • A45C11/00Receptacles for purposes not provided for in groups A45C1/00 - A45C9/00
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A45HAND OR TRAVELLING ARTICLES
    • A45CPURSES; LUGGAGE; HAND CARRIED BAGS
    • A45C11/00Receptacles for purposes not provided for in groups A45C1/00 - A45C9/00
    • A45C2011/002Receptacles for purposes not provided for in groups A45C1/00 - A45C9/00 for portable handheld communication devices, e.g. mobile phone, pager, beeper, PDA, smart phone
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A45HAND OR TRAVELLING ARTICLES
    • A45CPURSES; LUGGAGE; HAND CARRIED BAGS
    • A45C11/00Receptacles for purposes not provided for in groups A45C1/00 - A45C9/00
    • A45C2011/003Receptacles for purposes not provided for in groups A45C1/00 - A45C9/00 for portable computing devices, e.g. laptop, tablet, netbook, game boy, navigation system, calculator

Abstract

Disclosed is a protective case for an electronic device. The protective case has three layers: an elastomeric liner that surrounds a portion of the electronic device, a cover and a cushion insert disposed between the liner and cover. The cushion insert includes raised impact portions that extend through the cover, and that are capable of absorbing shocks from impacts.

Description

    CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS
  • The present application claims foreign priority under 35 U.S.C. §119(e) to commonly owned and co-pending U.S. Provisional Application No. 61/698,563, which was filed on Sep. 7, 2012, the subject matter of which is incorporated herein by reference in its entirety.
  • TECHNICAL FIELD
  • The present invention relates generally to cases designed to protect sensitive items from damage and/or to provide an exterior surface that is comfortable to touch.
  • BACKGROUND
  • Numerous different types of electronic devices currently exist for communication, entertainment and other purposes. These include cell phones, MP3 players, video players, smartphones, communication devices, such as walkie-talkies, navigation devices, such as GPS devices, and other types of electronic devices, such as various types of computers, including laptop computers, hand-held computers, ultra-mobile computers and tablet computers. These devices often include touch screens, interactive panels including, but not limited to, capacitive coupled interfaces, keyboards, scroll wheels, tilt switches, push button switches, and other interactive controls. Due to the sensitive nature of these electronic devices, it is desirable to provide protection for these devices.
  • SUMMARY
  • Disclosed herein, in one embodiment, is a protective case. The protective case comprises a cover having a back portion and a sidewall connected to the back portion. The cover includes interconnected support members defined by a plurality of receiving apertures disposed in predetermined areas, and has a predetermined thickness. The case also includes a liner having a back portion and a sidewall connected to the back portion. The cover and liner each have a predetermined thickness. The case also includes a cushion insert with raised impact regions disposed adjacent to first recessed impact regions. The raised impact regions are disposed in predetermined areas corresponding to the plurality of receiving apertures, and have a predetermined thickness greater than the thickness of the cover. The cushion insert is disposed between the cover and the liner, such that the plurality of interconnected support members engage with the first recessed impact regions, and the raised impact regions engage with the plurality of receiving apertures, such that the raised impact regions extend above the outer surface of the cover.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • Referring now to the Figures, the features and advantages of the present disclosure will be apparent from the following more particular description of exemplary embodiments, as illustrated in the accompanying drawings, in which like reference characters refer to the same parts throughout the different views. The drawings are not necessarily to scale, emphasis instead being placed upon illustrating the principles of the disclosure.
  • FIG. 1 is a perspective front view of an exemplary protective case according to the present disclosure, in an assembled configuration;
  • FIG. 2 is perspective back view of the cover of the protective case shown in FIG. 1;
  • FIG. 3 is a side view of the protective case shown in FIG. 1;
  • FIG. 4 is an exploded perspective view of the protective case shown in FIG. 1;
  • FIG. 5 is a partial perspective cross-sectional view of the protective case shown in FIG. 1, through line 5-5;
  • FIG. 6 is an exploded view of the cross-section shown in FIG. 5;
  • FIG. 7A is a cross-section of one embodiment of the cushion insert shown in FIG. 4, which is not drawn to scale;
  • FIG. 7B is a cross-section of another embodiment of the cushion insert shown in FIG. 4, which is not drawn to scale;
  • FIG. 8 is a perspective front view of another exemplary protective case according to the present disclosure, in an assembled configuration and mounted on a cell phone;
  • FIG. 9 is a perspective back view of the protective case shown in FIG. 8;
  • FIG. 10 is an exploded perspective view of the protective case shown in FIG. 8;
  • FIG. 11 is an exploded cross-sectional view of the protective case shown in FIG. 8;
  • FIG. 12 is an exploded perspective view of one section of the protective case shown in FIG. 8;
  • FIG. 13 is an exploded perspective view of one section of the protective case shown in FIG. 8;
  • FIG. 14 is an exploded perspective view of the two sections of shown in shown in FIGS. 12 and 13, each in an assembled configuration;
  • FIG. 15 is a cross-section of screen protector and liner of the protective case shown in FIG. 8, mounted on a cell phone;
  • FIG. 16 is a cross-section of the cover and liner of the protective case shown in FIG. 8, in an assembled configuration;
  • FIG. 17 is a cross-section of the protective case shown in FIG. 8;
  • FIG. 18 is a front view of another embodiment of a protective case according to the present disclosure;
  • FIG. 19 is an interior view of the protective case shown in FIG. 18;
  • FIG. 20 is a side view of the protective case shown in FIG. 8; and
  • FIG. 21 is a cross-sectional view of the protective case shown in FIG. 18.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION
  • The present disclosure is directed to protective impact absorbing and cushioning structures designed to protect sensitive items from damage. The present structures can conform to the contours of the items to be protected, and provide an exterior surface that is comfortable to touch. The present structures include, in some embodiments, both raised and recessed impact regions of various shapes, sizes, configurations and thicknesses. Various materials can be used for the raised impact regions, as will be described below.
  • The improved cases of the present disclosure comprise interconnected but separable case sections that substantially conform to the outer surface of the item to be protected. The case can be designed to have specific functional characteristics such as, for example, targeted impact protection on case edges and corners. By combining specific shapes, sizes, configurations, contours and orientations of raised and recessed impact regions, the case can be adapted for any type of product that requires protection, in addition to those mentioned above.
  • For example, the present cases can be adapted into sleeves or cases that correspond to the shape and size of an electronic device, such as a laptop computer or a tablet device, such that they conform to the exterior of the case. As such, the case can be formed in shapes that would conform at least in part to the outer surface of the encased product. The cases described herein also may be adapted for luggage, athletic protective gear, and the like.
  • The protective cases can provide lightweight and flexible impact-resistant protection, and can be aesthetically pleasing, more durable and lower in cost than other cases. For ease of discussion, the term “flexible,” as used herein, means the ability of the pad to move by bending, twisting, flexing and/or stretching, and the like. The construction of the present cases is rugged, durable, and able to withstand the temperatures, detergents and mechanical action used in industrial and/or commercial laundering, unlike other cases, which may degrade under such harsh conditions.
  • FIGS. 1-7, when taken together, show one exemplary embodiment of the present disclosure, which is directed to a protective case 10 for an electronic device (not illustrated), such as a media device or cell phone. Although described herein with reference to a protective case for an electronic device, as noted above, the protective case may be adapted to any product that requires protection or that is designed to provide protection. For ease of reference, in all of the embodiments disclosed herein, the electronic device will be referred to hereinafter as a cell phone.
  • Case 10 is shown in an assembled configuration in FIG. 1, and in an exploded view in FIG. 4. As shown, case 10 comprises a cover 12, a cushion insert 30, and a liner 40, which may be interconnected when assembled, as shown in FIG. 1, but are otherwise separable from one another, as shown in FIG. 4. In the present embodiment, cover 12, cushion insert 30 and liner 40 are each single, unitary parts, but if desired, each may be formed as two or more separable but interlocking parts that can be assembled together and/or onto the surfaces of the cell phone.
  • Cover 12 may be constructed to conform to the exterior surface of at least a portion of the cushion insert 30. Cover 12 comprises a back section 14 and a sidewall 16 extending upwardly from the back section 14. Each of the back section 14 and sidewall 16 comprise opposing inner surfaces 14 a, 16 a and outer surfaces 14 b, 16 b respectively.
  • One or both of the back section 14 and sidewall 16 comprises a plurality of receiving apertures 22 extending from the inner surfaces 14 a, 16 a to the outer surface 14 b, 16 b, to define a plurality of interconnected support members 24 disposed between the receiving apertures 22.
  • The cover 12 may be formed of a substantially rigid, semi-rigid and/or flexible material, and has a size and configuration corresponding to the cell phone. When rigid or semi-rigid, it may be desirable for the cover 12 to comprise two or more separable but interlocking parts that can be assembled onto the front and rear surfaces of the cell phone. The cover 12 can be made from a material that is capable of stretching sufficiently to allow the electronic device to slide into the front opening 20 of the cover 12 while maintaining the form-fitting shape of the cover 12. Suitable materials include, but are not limited to, a variety of thermoset materials, such as synthetic rubber, silicon, urethane and other materials. The density and elasticity of the cover 12, as well as the pre-forming of the cover 12 to fit the shape of electronic device, allows the material of the cover 12 to both stretch and recover so that the cushion cover fits tightly on the electronic device. In the present embodiment, cover 12 is a unitary pre-formed elastomeric material that is flexible and capable of stretching sufficiently to allow the electronic device to slide easily into and be removed from case 10. The cover 12 has sufficient elasticity to stretch over the electronic device, and to recover so that the cover fits snugly over the cushion insert and on the electronic device, such that the case 10 conforms to the electronic device. The cover 12 can be formed using a variety of techniques and processes suitable for processing the foregoing materials, which are known in the art.
  • In the present embodiment, cover 12 has a predetermined thickness T1 that is selected to be less than the thickest section of the cushion insert T2, as will be described below. In the present embodiment, the thickness T1 ranges from about 0.050″ to about 0.090″, more particularly about 0.060″ to about 0.080″, more particularly still about 0.075″.
  • The liner 40 may be constructed to conform to the interior surface of at least a portion of cover 12 and cushion insert 30. The liner comprises a back section 44, a sidewall 46 extending upwardly from the back section 44, and a bezel 48 extending outwardly from the sidewall 46 to define the front opening 20.
  • The liner 40 may be formed of a substantially flexible material, and has a size and configuration corresponding to the cell phone. The liner 40 can be made from any of the materials described above with reference to the cover 12, provided the material is capable of stretching sufficiently to allow the electronic device to slide into the front opening 20 of the liner 40 while maintaining the form-fitting shape of the liner 40. In the present embodiment, liner 40 is unitary, and can comprise an elastomeric material as described above with reference to the cover 12, which is flexible and capable of stretching sufficiently to allow the electronic device to slide easily into and be removed from liner 40. The liner 40 has sufficient elasticity to stretch over the electronic device, and to recover so that the cover fits snugly over the cushion insert and on the electronic device, such that the liner 40 and therefore the case 10 conforms to the electronic device. The density and elasticity of the liner 40, as well as the pre-forming of the liner 40 to fit the shape of electronic device, allows the material of the liner 40 to both stretch and recover so that the cushion cover fits tightly on the electronic device. The liner 40 can be formed using a variety of techniques and processes suitable for processing the foregoing materials, which are known in the art.
  • The cushion insert 30 may be constructed to conform to at least a portion of the outer surface of the liner. The cushion insert 30 may be formed from a variety of materials, such that it has a size and configuration corresponding to a portion of the inner surface of the cover and a portion of the outer surface of the liner, and a thickness that allows it to fit between the inner surface of the cover and the outer surface of the liner 40.
  • FIG. 7 shows an exemplary embodiment of cushion insert 30, which comprises spaced apart top and bottom surfaces 30 a,b and a plurality of raised impact regions 32 disposed adjacent to first recessed impact regions 34. The raised impact regions 32 are defined in and extend upwardly from the top surface 30 a, and are disposed in predetermined areas corresponding to the plurality of receiving apertures 22 and having a width W1, which may vary as desired, and a predetermined thickness T2 that is selected to be greater than the thickness T1 of the cover 12. In the present embodiment, the width W1 of the raised impact regions 32 is about 0.200″ to about 0.400″, more particularly about 0.250″ to about 0.350″, and more particularly still about 0.305″; and the thickness T2 ranges from about 0.150″ to about 0.350″, more particularly about 0.200″ to about 0.300″, more particularly still about 0.240″.
  • Raised impact regions 32 are spaced apart from one another by first recessed impact regions 34. First recessed impact regions 34 have a width W2, which may vary as desired, and a predetermined thickness T3, which is selected to be less than the thickness T2 of the raised impact regions 32. In the present embodiment, the width W2 of the first recessed regions 34 is about 0.100″ to about 0.200″, more particularly about 0.130″ to about 0.170″, and more particularly still about 0.150″; and the thickness T3 ranges from about 0.025″ to about 0.045″, more particularly about 0.030″ to about 0.040″, and more particularly still about 0.035″.
  • The cushion insert 30 also may comprise one or more second recessed impact regions (not illustrated) that correspond to the contours, edges and/or corners of the cell phone, to facilitate bending and/or flexing of the cushion insert 30 into the contours, edges and/or corners of cover 12. When present, the second recessed impact regions 36 have a width W3, which may vary as desired, and a predetermined thickness T4, which is selected to be less than the thickness T3 of the first recessed impact regions 36. In the present embodiment, the width W3 of the second recessed regions 36 is about 0.080″ to about 0.200″, more particularly about 0.100″ to about 0.170″, and more particularly still about 0.132″; and the thickness T3 ranges from about 0.010″ to about 0.030″, more particularly about 0.015″ to about 0.025″, and more particularly still about 0.020″. When assembled, the raised impact regions 32 protrude or extend above the outer surface of cushion insert 30 by a distance D1, as shown in FIG. 5.
  • All of the foregoing thicknesses, widths, distances and spacings may vary, as desired.
  • In the present embodiment, the raised impact regions 32 comprise an upper surface 32 a and sidewalls 32 b extending downwardly therefrom. The raised impact regions 32 may have any thickness sufficient to provide a protective or comfortable effect, by protruding above the exterior surface of the cover 12. Thus, for certain functional advantages, the thickness of the raised impact regions 32 may be designed to protrude above the outer surface of the case, when in an assembled configuration. For example, in the present exemplary cell phone device case 10, when assembled, the raised impact regions 32 may protrude or extend above the outer surface 12 a of the cover 12 by about 1/16 inch to about ½ inch. If desired or needed, and as shown in the present embodiment, the cushion insert 30 also can comprise raised impact regions 32 designed to protrude through the sidewall or the bezel to protect the edges and/or screen from an impact.
  • The raised impact regions 32 may have any shape or configuration as is desired to achieve the functional advantage of impact protection, or the aesthetic design intended to appeal to a consumer. The size, shape, quantity, configuration and location of the raised impact regions may be varied as desired in order to achieve the foregoing objectives. For aesthetic purposes, the color of the cover and cushion insert may be the same or different, and also may include text and/or graphics.
  • Each of the cover 12, liner 40 and insert 30 may comprises one or more raised keys 28 that correspond in shape, size and location to the size, shape and location of smaller functional keys or ports (also not illustrated herein) to which access may be limited due to the thickness of the case, to allow the user to maintain functional access without removing the case from the electronic device. Examples of such smaller functional keys include, but are not limited to, power and volume keys. Raised keys 28 should not be confused with the raised impact regions 32, which are intended to absorb impacts.
  • Similarly, each of the cover 12, liner 40 and insert 30 may comprise one or more functional apertures 26 or holes that correspond in shape, size and location to the size, shape and location of various functional keys, ports, devices or other items that may be included on the electronic device (none of which are illustrated herein), to keep such items free of obstruction. Examples of such functional keys include, but are not limited to, charging ports, speakers, auxiliary ports, power keys, camera lenses, and the like.
  • The cushion insert 30 also optionally may comprise one or more perforations (not illustrated) formed in the second recessed impact regions, or elsewhere as desired, to facilitate ease and conformance of the cushion insert 30 between the cover 12 and liner 40.
  • To assemble the case, the cushion insert 30 may be inserted into cover 12 such that the raised impact regions 32 are aligned with the receiving apertures 22 such that the raised impact regions 32 are received into and extend at least partially therethrough the corresponding receiving apertures 22, and a portion of the raised impact regions 32 extends above the upper surface 12 a of the cover 12.
  • When assembled, the raised impact regions 32 protrude from the corresponding receiving apertures 22 on the cover 12, and the first recessed impact regions 34 between the raised impact regions 32 are disposed underneath the support members 24, between the raised impact regions 32. The protruding raised impact regions 32 function at least to protect the cover and electronic device from impact, and the first and second recessed impact regions 34 disposed underneath the cover 12 also absorb energy through the material disposed between the device and the cover. Thus, the case 10 provides impact resistance and energy absorption, as a result of the externally exposed raised impact regions 32 and portions of the cushion insert 30 that are disposed underneath the cover 12, adjacent to the electronic device. Although illustrated herein with receiving apertures 22 adapted to receive raised impact regions 32 therein, cover 12 also can be formed to comprise recessed regions 38, rather than apertures, to receive the raised impact regions 32 therein.
  • FIGS. 8-17, when taken together, show another exemplary embodiment of a protective case 100 according to the present disclosure. As in the previous embodiment, although described herein with reference to a protective case for an electronic device, the protective case may be adapted to any product that requires protection or that is designed to provide protection. For ease of reference, the electronic device will be referred to hereinafter as a cell phone.
  • As shown, case 100 comprises a cover 12′, a cushion insert 30, and a liner 40′, which may be interconnected when assembled, but are otherwise separable from one another. In the present embodiment, cover 12′, cushion insert 30, and liner 40′, are each single, unitary parts, but if desired, each may be formed as two or more separable but interlocking parts that can be assembled together and/or onto the surfaces of the cell phone.
  • Cushion insert 30 has the same construction as in the previous embodiments.
  • Liner 40′ may be constructed to conform to the interior surface of at least a portion of cover 12′ and cushion insert 30. The liner 40′ comprises a back section 44, a sidewall 46 extending upwardly from the back section 44, and a bezel 48 extending outwardly from the sidewall 46 to define the front opening 20.
  • Cover 12′ comprises a back section 14, sidewalls 16 extending upwardly from the back section 14, and one or more retaining arms 70 extending inwardly from one or more of the sidewalls 16. Each of the back section 14 and sidewall 16 comprise opposing inner surfaces 14 a, 16 a and outer surfaces 14 b, 16 b respectively.
  • When assembled, the retaining arms 70 assist in retaining the bezel 48 and liner against the cell phone when the cell phone is disposed in the protective case.
  • FIGS. 18-21, when taken together, show another exemplary embodiment of a protective case 200 according to the present disclosure.
  • As shown, case 200 comprises a cover 12 and a cushion insert 30, and an optional liner 40 (not illustrated). In the present embodiment, cover 12, cushion insert 30 and optional liner 40 are each single, unitary parts, but if desired, each may be formed as two or more separable but interlocking parts that can be assembled together and/or onto the surfaces of the cell phone. Cushion insert includes receiving apertures 22 in which raised impact regions 32 have been disposed, to provide improved protection on the front or screen side of the cell phone. The raised impact regions can comprise part of a cushion insert 30 that conforms to the interior of the cover, as in previous embodiments, or they can be individual regions that are disposed in the receiving apertures.
  • Optionally, in any of the foregoing embodiments, two or more of the cover, liner and inserts may be co-molded, welded, bonded or adhered together using a variety of techniques.
  • The thickness of cushion insert 30 may be varied as desired, but it is desirable for the thickness to be sufficient to protect the device from impact, while remaining thin enough to minimize the total weight of the case
  • Various other materials and layers may be used to form the cushioning inserts, as described in commonly-owned and co-pending U.S. application Ser. No. 13/447,093, which was filed on Apr. 13, 2012, and is incorporated herein by reference in its entirety. Other materials for and methods of making materials that are useful for the cushion inserts are disclosed in commonly owned and co-pending U.S. patent application Ser. No. 13/208,229, filed on Aug. 11, 2011; and Ser. No. 13/271,594, filed on Oct. 12, 2011, each of which is incorporated herein by reference in its entirety. One desirable construction for the cushion inserts 30 includes a cushioning layer disposed between opposing upper and lower layers, and optional fabric layer, as described in the foregoing applications.
  • In addition to the foregoing, suitable materials for the foregoing layers and the adhesive (if used) are disclosed in the afore-mentioned patent applications, and in U.S. Publication Nos. US 2008/0034614 and US 2009/0255625, which also disclose techniques for manufacturing the present cushion inserts; each of the foregoing publications is incorporated herein by reference in its entirety. The molds for the present pads are designed to allow layers to be compressed together under conditions sufficient to minimize or eliminate the foam in the recessed impact regions, for certain embodiments, while allowing the layers to bond together.
  • Advantages of the present improved cases include, but are not limited to, improved impact protection, particularly on case edges and corners, lighter weight, improved aesthetics, lower manufacturing costs, and less abrasion to the encased article. The improved cases of the present disclosure comprise separable inner and outer interconnected parts that substantially conform to the outer surface of an article to be protected. The protective cases can be adapted for any type of product that requires protection, in addition to those mentioned above.
  • Compounds are described using standard nomenclature. For example, any position not substituted by an indicated group is understood to have its valency filled by a bond as indicated, or a hydrogen atom A dash (“—”) that is not between two letters or symbols is used to indicate a point of attachment for a substituent. For example, —CHO is attached through carbon of the carbonyl group. Unless defined otherwise herein, all percentages herein mean weight percent (“wt. %”). Furthermore, all ranges disclosed herein are inclusive and combinable (e.g., ranges of “up to about 25 weight percent (wt. %), with about 5 wt. % to about 20 wt. % desired, and about 10 wt. % to about 15 wt. % more desired,” are inclusive of the endpoints and all intermediate values of the ranges, e.g., “about 5 wt. % to about 25 wt. %, about 5 wt. % to about 15 wt. %”, etc.). The notation “+/−10% means that the indicated measurement may be from an amount that is minus 10% to an amount that is plus 10% of the stated value.
  • Finally, unless defined otherwise, technical and scientific terms used herein have the same meaning as is commonly understood by one of skill in the art to which this disclosure belongs.
  • While the disclosure has been described with reference to an exemplary embodiment, it will be understood by those skilled in the art that various changes may be made and equivalents may be substituted for elements thereof without departing from the scope of the disclosure. In addition, many modifications may be made to adapt a particular situation or material to the teachings of the disclosure without departing from the essential scope thereof. Therefore, it is intended that the disclosure not be limited to the particular embodiment disclosed as the best mode contemplated for carrying out this disclosure, but that the disclosure will include all embodiments falling within the scope of any appended claims.

Claims (30)

What is claimed is:
1. A protective case, comprising:
a cover having a back portion and a sidewall connected to the back portion, the cover comprising interconnected support members defined by a plurality of receiving apertures disposed in predetermined areas, the cover comprising a predetermined thickness;
a liner having a back portion and a sidewall connected to the back portion, the liner comprising a predetermined thickness; and
a cushion insert comprising raised impact regions disposed adjacent to first recessed impact regions, the raised impact regions disposed in predetermined areas corresponding to the plurality of receiving apertures and having a predetermined thickness greater than the thickness of the cover;
wherein the cushion is disposed between the cover and the liner, such that the plurality of interconnected support members engage with the first recessed impact regions, and the raised impact regions engage with the plurality of receiving apertures, such that the raised impact regions extend above the outer surface of the cover.
2. The protective case of claim 1, further comprising one or more second recessed impact regions, wherein the thickness of the second recessed impact regions is less than the thickness of the first recessed impact regions.
3. The protective case of claim 2, wherein the raised impact regions comprise grooves in an upper surface thereof, such that the thickness of the grooves is less than the thickness of the raised impact regions, and greater than the thickness of the first recessed impact regions.
4. The protective case of claim 1, wherein the cushion insert comprises an impact absorbing material.
5. The protective case of claim 1, wherein the cushion insert comprises a multi-layer laminated material.
6. The protective case of claim 4, wherein the impact absorbing material is disposed between opposing upper and lower layers of a thermoplastic elastomeric (TPE) material.
7. The protective case of claim 5, wherein the laminated material further comprises a reinforcing layer disposed between the impact absorbing material and the lower layer of TPE material.
8. The protective case of claim 7, wherein the laminated material further comprises a fabric layer disposed adjacent to the lower layer of TPE material, opposite the impact absorbing material.
9. The protective case of claim 4, wherein the cushion insert is a rate dependent material.
10. The protective case of claim 9, wherein the rate dependent material is a polyurethane foam.
11. The protective case of claim 1, wherein the predetermined thickness of the raised impact regions is sufficient to absorb impacts and/or prevent shocks from the impacts from being transferred to the electronic device.
12. The protective case of claim 1, wherein the case comprises an elastomeric material with a durometer of about 80 Shore A to about 100 Shore A.
13. The protective case of claim 1, wherein the case comprises an elastomeric material with a durometer of about 95 Shore A.
14. The protective case of claim 12, wherein the elastomeric material comprises a thermoplastic polyurethane.
15. The protective case of claim 1, wherein the thickness of the cover ranges from about 0.055″ to about 0.095″.
16. The protective case of claim 1, wherein the thickness of the first recessed impact regions ranges from about 0.025″ to about 0.045″.
17. The protective case of claim 2, wherein the thickness of the second recessed impact regions ranges from about 0.010″ to about 0.030″.
18. The protective case of claim 1, wherein the impact absorbing regions extend above the outer surface of the cover, when the case is in an assembled configuration.
19. The protective case of claim 7, wherein the reinforcing layer is porous.
20. The protective case of claim 7, wherein the reinforcing layer is a nonwoven fabric.
21. The protective case of claim 7, wherein the reinforcing layer is a hydro-entangled nonwoven fabric.
22. The protective case of claim 1, wherein the cover is unitary.
23. The protective case of claim 1, wherein the cushion insert is unitary.
24. The protective case of claim 1, wherein the cover is co-molded with the cushion insert.
25. The protective case of claim 1, wherein the cover and the cushion insert are adhesively connected.
26. The protective case of claim 6, wherein the TPE layers are continuously bonded to the impact absorbing material.
27. The protective case of claim 5, wherein the cushion insert comprises a cushioning material disposed between and continuously bonded to opposing adjacent layers.
28. The protective case of claim 2, wherein, when the case is assembled, the raised impact regions are aligned with the receiving apertures.
29. The protective case of claim 28, wherein, when the case is assembled, the raised impact regions are received into and at least partially through the receiving apertures and a portion of the raised impact regions extend above the upper surface of the cover.
30. The protective case of claim 1, wherein the case comprises an elastomeric material with a durometer ranging from about 80 Shore A to about 100 Shore A, and the case insert comprises a rate dependent polyurethane foam with a density ranging from about 5 to about 35 pounds per cubic foot.
US14/022,207 2012-09-07 2013-09-09 Protective case and methods of making Abandoned US20140069825A1 (en)

Priority Applications (2)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
US201261698563P true 2012-09-07 2012-09-07
US14/022,207 US20140069825A1 (en) 2012-09-07 2013-09-09 Protective case and methods of making

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USD780166S1 (en) * 2015-06-22 2017-02-28 Win2000 Mobile phone cover
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USD789937S1 (en) 2016-11-10 2017-06-20 Lina Zhang Case for portable device
USD795239S1 (en) * 2016-05-10 2017-08-22 Rohit Batta Cellular phone cover
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US10170738B2 (en) 2008-01-18 2019-01-01 Mophie Inc. Battery pack for mobile devices
US9577695B2 (en) 2008-01-18 2017-02-21 Mophie, Inc. Wireless communication accessory for a mobile device
US9406913B2 (en) 2008-01-18 2016-08-02 Mophie, Inc. Battery case for mobile devices
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USD797092S1 (en) 2014-11-25 2017-09-12 Mophie, Inc. Case for a mobile electronic device
USD797091S1 (en) 2014-11-25 2017-09-12 Mophie, Inc. Case for a mobile electronic device
USD797093S1 (en) 2014-12-03 2017-09-12 Mophie, Inc. Case for a mobile electronic device
US9356267B1 (en) * 2014-12-17 2016-05-31 Mophie, Inc. Protective battery case to partially enclose a mobile electronic device
US20170135454A1 (en) * 2015-03-12 2017-05-18 Griffin Technology, Inc. Protective Device Case
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USD780166S1 (en) * 2015-06-22 2017-02-28 Win2000 Mobile phone cover
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USD795239S1 (en) * 2016-05-10 2017-08-22 Rohit Batta Cellular phone cover
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USD789937S1 (en) 2016-11-10 2017-06-20 Lina Zhang Case for portable device
US10051934B1 (en) 2017-02-02 2018-08-21 Lina Zhang Case for portable computing device

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EP2892823A1 (en) 2015-07-15
KR20150053961A (en) 2015-05-19
CA2923535A1 (en) 2014-03-13
EP2892823A4 (en) 2016-06-15
GB2520660A (en) 2015-05-27
JP2015527175A (en) 2015-09-17
GB201505771D0 (en) 2015-05-20
WO2014040005A1 (en) 2014-03-13
CN104903215A (en) 2015-09-09

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