Product Name and Rear Cover Material


Posted by ben/ on 2019/09/18 - 0 Comments


Name Change

So we've been learning about trademarks and, according to the USPTO, descriptive names aren't allowed to be trademarked. The engineer in me thinks forcing products to use silly made-up names is a bit contrived and contributes to the weakening of our collective moral fiber, but I can also see the argument that people shouldn't be allowed to squat on the rights to call their product "durable orange screwdriver", or "t-shirt with a lame joke on it" and sue anybody else that tries to use English to describe a similar product.

Grumbling about the 990th papercut aside, the name WiPhone can't be trademarked because it's a descriptive name (WiFi + Phone), so we need a new product name. I'd love it if someone could come up with a good one and I don't have to think about this any more. Free phone if we choose your suggested name. Have at it in the comments.

Rear Covers

We've been getting material samples from various suppliers to make the back covers and nothing is meeting a cosmetic level that you might expect to see on the outside of a consumer product. The main issue is the FR-4 itself tends to have blemishes because it's not intended for use in cosmetic applications. Typically the issues are small scratches or dots. It looks perfectly normal on a PCB, but it's immediately noticeable on the exterior of a finished product.

I personally don't have much of an issue with the the way the matte sample material we have looks, but if someone randomly saw these they would tend to think the manufacturing process had quality issues.

So, thoughts there also? Is normal FR-4 with a few blemishes something everyone is happy to live with for the hacker cred, or should we use a different material for the back covers? Either way is OK, we just need to choose something that hopefully the majority of us feel good about.

Some pics of material samples:

matte material
matte material
glossy material
glossy material

Bonus pics:

Cutest Screwdriver Ever (handles)
Cutest Screwdriver Ever (handles)
Frames, during CNC process
Frames, during CNC process