Well, now, there's stealing which, although normally frowned upon, in our context comes recommended by T.S. Eliot. On his view it consists of taking an author's phrase verbatim, but using it in a different setting where it therefore does something different from the original. It can be done, but sparingly, and I don't wish to be the one to quantify it.
(However, the French-Uruguyan writer Isidore Ducasse (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comte_de_Lautr%C3%A9amont) contemplated rewriting an entire Victor Hugo novel; but again, doing it so as to express a different set of ideas. Unfortunately he died before he could pull it off.)
And then there's plagiarism, which in my book consists of stealing an author's ideas and passing them off as your own original work. And for that, rephrazing doesn't even cut the mustard. The maximum legitimate amount you can do is none. Whether that applies to the legal issue as well, I am not qualified to say.
That said, you are of course allowed to use ideas you find in other people's work, with, or without credit depending on the situation. In an academic work, absolutely required. In a work of fiction, not necessarily. You may rely on the public being already aware of the origin of this particular universe or set of ideas. But if you don't bring anything original to it, what, then, is the point?
What you're not allowed to do, is claim ownership or authorship of things that were not yours in the first place.
As for the quote you provide, it seems to me a straightforward descriptive statement of what a product does, that no one could legitimately claim ownership of.