By Christian Zibreg on Dec 5, 2013
An interesting Apple patent application has surfaced in the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) database on Thursday. Titled ‘Smart dock for activating a voice recognition mode of a portable electronic device,’ the filing basically describes a smart dock of sorts for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad devices with a unique feature giving Apple’s Siri digital personal assistant a permanent place in your home, with a cool always-on functionality.
Unlike Motorola’s Moto X handset with on-device Google Now feature always in the listening mode and responding to the ‘OK Google’ phrase, Apple’s patent relies on a hardware dock providing the listening functionality, with users being able to set a custom audio prompt that will trigger Siri… Read More
By Cody Lee on Nov 26, 2013
A monster 600+ page Apple patent application surfaced yesterday, detailing some of the things it’s been working on with Touch ID. It mentions using the sensor underneath the Home button as a trackpad, and even talks about embedding the sensor right into the iPhone’s display.
Today, a new invention by Apple has popped up on the web, this time for a patent that it has already been awarded. It’s called ‘Digital camera including refocusable imaging mode adaptor,’ and it details a camera that includes refocusing capabilities—similar to that of the Lytro… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Nov 26, 2013
As you know, in a retrial last week a jury of six women and two men determined that Samsung owes Apple $290 million for lifting patented iPhone technologies, bringing the total amount of damages to $929 million versus the original $1.05 billion ruling. The South Korean Galaxy maker has immediately filed a motion to delay the payout on the grounds of reevaluation of the validity of the Apple patent No. 7,844,915, which covers the famous pinch-to-zoom gesture.
The presiding Judge Lucy Koh denied Samsung motion’s last night as she appeared concerned about the potential implications of such ruling, including whether granting a stay would unethically favor Apple… Read More
By Cody Lee on Nov 26, 2013
Earlier this month we told you that California inventor Richard L. Ditzik was suing Apple, claiming its iPhone infringed on one of his patents. Well this week, the Cupertino company won the case against the 70-year-old electrical engineer.
Bloomberg is reporting that Apple was found not guilty of infringing on Ditzik’s so-called ‘smartphone patent.’ A jury in Los Angeles made the call yesterday, completely rejecting the claim by NetAirus Technologies—Ditzik’s shell company… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Nov 25, 2013
Last week, Patently Apple shed light on an Apple patent filed with the United States Patent and Trademark Office which covers the various aspects of its Touch ID fingerprint scanner, a new feature exclusive to the iPhone 5s.
The invention is entitled Capacitive Sensor Packaging and details collapsing the full fingerprint maps into a hashed, encrypted data securely stored on the A7 chip’s Secure Enclave. It’s curious that the patent’s main inventor, Wayne Westerman, developed Multi-Touch technology at Fingerworks, a startup Apple snapped up in 2005.
In another massive 612-page patent application Apple filed with the World Intellectual Property Organization in May 2013, the iPhone maker indicates it’s been researching mobile screens with Touch ID embedded, along with trackpad capabilities allowing for panning of on-screen content by moving your finger over the Touch ID Home button… Read More
By Cody Lee on Nov 21, 2013
The verdict is in folks. After just a few days of deliberation, a jury of six women and two men reached a conclusion for the retrial between Apple and Samsung over damages, and it’s ruled in favor of the iPad-maker. Samsung must pay Apple $290 million.
This is in addition to the damages awarded in the original trial last fall, bringing the total amount Samsung owes up to $890 million. So essentially, Apple won back most of the damages that Judge Koh cut in March after finding the initial verdict flawed… Read More
By Cody Lee on Nov 18, 2013
The United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has vacated Judge Lucy Koh’s earlier denial of Apple’s request to ban 26 Samsung devices that infringed on its patent. The move will give Apple another chance to permanently halt the sales of these devices in the US.
Now the issue will be sent back to Koh’s court, where Apple’s lawyers will no longer have to prove that the patented features in Samsung’s products were the sole reason for driving sales, but only that there is some connection between the features and demand for Samsung devices… Read More
By Cody Lee on Nov 15, 2013
As the Apple v. Samsung trial to recalculate the damages Samsung owes continues, Phil Schiller took the stand yesterday. Apple’s senior vice president of worldwide marketing was called up to speak with just 11 minutes left in the session.
But that still proved enough time for Schiller to dish out some interesting details about his role at Apple, and its early days of iPhone development. He said around 100 people worked on what was referred to as the ‘bet the company’ product… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Nov 12, 2013
“Boy, have we patented it!”, quipped Steve Jobs in wrapping up the segment of his January 2007 MacWorld Expo presentation dealing with the iPhone’s multi-touch user interface.
Months later, Jobs through the combination of sheer willpower, yelling and F-bombs would impose restrictions on early Android releases.
The goal was to prevent Google’s smartphone software from employing multitouch gestures on mobile devices that Apple had been researching for years. The strategy eventually failed, prompting Apple to launch proxy battles against Android backers such as HTC, Samsung and Motorola over prized iPhone inventions.
One guy was unimpressed, though: a California inventor has been claiming for years now that he holds a patent related to an essential iPhone feature. He’s not afraid to take the consumer electronics powerhouse to court in order to prove the infringement and seek a five percent cut of Apple’s US sales, Bloomberg reported Tuesday… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Nov 7, 2013
The United States Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) on Thursday published an interesting Apple patent that has iWatch written all over it. The filing titled ‘Network access using short-range connectability’ describes a low-power wireless hotspot functionality via Bluetooth 4.0 that basically provides network connectivity akin to the iOS Wi-Fi hotspot feature, but without draining the battery as much.
By relying on the Bluetooth 4.0 low-energy protocol, also known as Bluetooth LE or Bluetooth Smart, such a wireless hotspot is a fit for a device like the rumored Apple smartwatch, which must be super power-efficient. Another benefit of using the Bluetooth LE-enabled hotspot is that your iPhone can instantly wake up the host device… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Oct 31, 2013
Apple has filed for a few patents in the past related to solar charging for mobile devices and has recently been discovered to be seeking experts in this field. The latest patent filed with the United States Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) indicates Apple may be on the verge of commercializing this technology on a mass scale.
The invention titled ‘Power management systems for accepting adapter and solar power in electronic devices’ outlines a solar power solution that could be easily integrated into MacBooks, iPhones and iPads without the need for unwieldy external converters… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on Oct 24, 2013
Canadian-based patent troll Wi-LAN lost its bid to force Apple to license patents covering several major wireless technologies. A jury found Apple did not infringe on two Wi-LAN patents dealing with CDMA, HSPA (3G), Wi-Fi and LTE. The patent company wanted Apple to pay $248 million.
In a statement, Wi-LAN said it was disappointed with the court’s decision, but feels the Marshall, Texas federal ruling will not hurt previous licensing deals now in place.
Samsung, HTC and BlackBerry are among the companies which have settled lawsuits… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on Oct 24, 2013
Unlike other media Apple sells, such as music and video, you’ve not been able to gift e-books – until now (perhaps). As we head into the holiday season, the iPhone maker has filed for a patent on sending to friends the e-books you’ve already purchased through the iBookstore. The patent filing would enable you to select a passage in an e-book that reminds you of someone, then gift the book, complete with a personalize message… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on Oct 18, 2013
A court earlier this week denied motions by Samsung to delay a probe into whether it improperly disclosed a confidential 2011 licensing agreement between Apple and Nokia.
Although Samsung lawyers argued the original judge made mistakes in ruling the South Korean firm committed a breach of privacy, Judge Lucy Koh found the decision “eminently reasonable”.
Earlier this month, Apple filed a legal motion claiming Samsung illegally disclosed details of the patent licensing agreement in order to improve negotiations. The iPhone maker alleges the information revealed was part of documents turned over as part of the Apple v. Samsung case… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on Oct 18, 2013
In a case of good timing, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has reconfirmed a multitouch patent credited to Apple’s late co-founder Steve Jobs and the original iPhone design.
On the sixth anniversary of the iconic smartphone, the U.S. government reaffirmed the massive patent that was called into question in 2012.
Jobs was among the more than two-dozen people named in the massive 364-page patent filed in 2006.
The USPTO had issed a preliminary invalidation of the patent package, but now believes all 20 patents are valid… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on Oct 8, 2013
U.S. President Barack Obama is opting to let stand a ban on Samsung product imports. The South Korean firm had requested the American president overturn an earlier decision by the US International Trade Commission. The failure to veto the import on Samsung products follows a last-minute veto of an import ban on Apple’s iPhone 4S in August… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on Oct 1, 2013
Typically, Apple patents technology sold within its retail locations. However, today the company received a patent for the design and construction of the glass cylindrical entrance to its Apple Store in Shanghai. Unlike most entrances, the one in Shanghai shapes huge slabs of glass, connected by a complex arrangement of fittings to form a building unto itself. To top it all off, Apple co-founder Steve Jobs is among the patent inventors… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on Sep 30, 2013
The beat goes on for primo patent troll Lodsys. Apple’s attempt to intervene in a concerted clipping of iOS developers failed after a patent-owner friendly judge dismissed the tech giant’s legal motion. U.S. District Judge Rodney Gilstrap in East Texas ruled Apple’s motion “is far outside the scope” of his courtroom.
The decision effectively opens the door to Lodsys settling all cases with defendants, thereby ending a 2011 effort by Apple to shield hundreds of thousands of individual iOS developers from being sued for patent-infringement by Lodsys… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on Sep 27, 2013
Although Apple’s iOS is known for its gesture-based interface, the iPhone maker is notoriously hesitant about enhancing the virtual keyboard feature. A patent granted Tuesday reveals the company has been considering adopting multitouch keyboard from the moment the iPhone appeared. The patent filing entitled ‘Swipe gestures for touch screen keyboards’ outlines gestures to handle common keyboard tasks, such as deletion, punctuation and more… Read More