You should be able to easily answer these questions:
Prof. Crunch stays fit with his rebounder (a mini-trampoline). These already exist, but Crunch has designed a new model that includes a handle (for stability) and also a touchscreen control that can be used to stream audio/video instructions. (These are shown in the figure below). He plans to sell a higher end model that includes displaying the bouncing-tempo on the screen and also energy-exerted (using movement-sensors in the rubber-bands or springs).
Crunch recently filed a utility patent application (February 2021) with the USPTO seeking to patent the following two claims:
1. An exercise apparatus comprising: a mini-trampoline; a support handle secured to the mini-trampoline that includes a grip-bar; and a touch-screen electronic device attached to the support handle and configured with software for displaying real-time exercise instructions. 2. The apparatus of claim 1, further comprising motion sensors attached to the mini-trampoline and configured to provide data to the touch-screen electronic device and wherein the touch-screen electronic device is configured to use the data provided to calculate and display energy-exerted by a user in real-time.
Crunch admits that all of the elements of his invention were individually available in the prior art. In particular, mini-trampolines with handles were already available, as were touch screens for displaying real-time instructions. Likewise, motion sensors are available, as well as algorithms for calculating energy use while trampolining. However, he has not seen any prior art that combines everything together in this particular way.
Question 1. (100 words) Are Crunch’s claims directed toward eligible subject matter?
Question 2. (80 words) Provide a concise argument why the USPTO should reject claim 1 as indefinite.
Question 3. (300 words) Based upon what you know so far, do Sections 102 or 103 create any hurdle to patentability?
Question 4. (100 words) Five years later … Crunch has obtained his patent exactly as claimed above and business is booming. Crunch recently found that GummyBearCo is selling a product that he thinks is infringing his claim 1. The only differences are that (1) it is a large 15-foot trampoline and (2) there is no “handle” per se. Rather, the screen is simply mounted to a pole at the edge of the trampoline. Also, although the GummyBearCo product is sold in the USA, it is actually manufactured in China. Can he prove infringement?