The History of Tech: Apple Sues Microsoft, March 17th 1988


The tech industry has certainly come far and wide from where it initially started. Furthermore, there are many rivalries in the tech industry and perhaps the most famous one till date is the Apple Vs Microsoft.

On the 17th of March 1988, Apple had famously sued Microsoft Corporation sought to prevent Microsoft and Hewlett-Packard from using visual graphical user interface (GUI) elements that were similar to those in Apple’s Lisa and Macintosh operating systems.

Read: The History of Tech: Yahoo! Acquires Flickr

Initially Apple had agreed to license certain parts of its GUI to Microsoft for use in Windows 1.0, but when Microsoft made changes in Windows 2.0 adding overlapping windows and other features found in the Macintosh GUI.

However, the court had ruled that

Apple cannot get patent-like protection for the idea of a graphical user interface, or the idea of a desktop metaphor [under copyright law].”

The decision was reaffirmed in 1995 and Apple’s appeal to the U.S Supreme Court has also denied.