Patent filing reveals Apple’s work on gesture-based passwords

By Cody Lee on Apr 17, 2014

 The US Patent and Trademark Office published a pair of interesting Apple patent applications yesterday. The filings are titled ‘Gesture entry techniques,’ and together they describe a device-unlocking feature that involves a user drawing a custom pattern on a screen by connecting illuminated dots.

Apple filed for the patent in late 2012, several years after Google introduced a very similar feature in Android. It would appear, though, that the iPad-maker’s version of the gesture-based password is at least slightly more advanced, as it can account for swipe speed, use of invisible dots, and more… Read More

 

Apple will no longer invest in patent troll Intellectual Ventures

By Christian Zibreg on Apr 11, 2014

Apple has chosen to pass on the opportunity to pour fresh money into Intellectual Ventures, a patent buying and assertion company founded and led by its chief executive officer Nathan Myhrvold. Following in Apple’s footsteps, chip giant Intel has distanced itself too from the controversial patent holding firm and declined further investment

Intellectual Ventures was one of the top-five owners of U.S. patents in 2011. The patent assertion entity, however, has managed to persuade the Japanese consumer electronics maker Sony and the Windows maker Microsoft to invest in its latest acquisition fund, a move that will create a fresh war chest for Intellectual Ventures to buy new patents… Read More

 

Apple calls in expert to explain why it deserves $2 billion in damages from Samsung

By Cody Lee on Apr 9, 2014

The high-profile patent trial between Apple and Samsung wages on, with Apple on Tuesday calling in a damages expert Chris Vellturo to speak to the jury. The MIT-trained economist’s job was to help the company explain why it deserved the damages it’s asking for.

For those who missed it last week, Apple is asking the court to award it $2 billion ($2.19B to be exact) in damages from Samsung for infringing on 5 of its utility patents. And according to Vellturo, that amount is fair based on a mix of lost profits and owed royalty fees… Read More

 

Internal Apple slides explain why it thinks iPhone growth is slowing

By Cody Lee on Apr 6, 2014

Despite posting 50+ million iPhone sales last quarter, Apple’s stock slid some 6%. As impressive as the numbers were, they still fell short of Wall Street expectations and reaffirmed fears of slowing growth. Apple’s YoY (year-over-year) iPhone growth is now down to just single digits.

The question is why? And Apple has a pretty good idea of what the answer is. According to some internal documents brought to light by the ongoing Samsung trial, the company attributes the slowing in iPhone growth to consumer want for larger, cheaper handsets and other factors… Read More

 

Steve Jobs email reveals past Apple TV ideas: apps, ‘magic wand’ remote and more

By Cody Lee on Apr 5, 2014

We’re only a few days in, but we’ve already learned a lot from the Apple-Samsung patent trial. With it being a legal proceeding, the public is given access to information it wasn’t previously privi’ed to by way of executive testimonies, corporate emails and other evidence.

In fact, earlier today a particularly interesting email surfaced from former Apple CEO Steve Jobs. The document, which was submitted as evidence in the case, features a list of things Jobs wanted to discuss at the company’s 2010 ‘top 100′ meeting, including the Apple TV… Read More

 

Apple engineer explains how the iPhone was designed for ‘normal people’

By Cody Lee on Apr 4, 2014

The Samsung trial marched on today, with Apple’s Greg Christie taking the stand. You might remember Christie, the senior software engineer, from this WSJ article last month, where he detailed some of the early stages of original iPhone development. And this afternoon, he did the same thing in court.

More specifically, Christie shared some new details on the development of the iPhone’s ‘Slide to Unlock,’ which is one of the patents that Apple’s accusing  Samsung of infringing. He said initially, his team wanted the handset’s display to be always on, but they quickly discovered it needed a locked mode… Read More

 

Apple settles patent infringement suit with Intertrust Technologies

By Cody Lee on Apr 4, 2014

Apple has reached an out-of-court settlement with Interest Technologies this week. The holding company, which is jointly owned by tech giants Sony and Philips, filed a lawsuit against the iPad-maker last year for allegedly infringing on more than two dozen of its patents on distributed computing.

The original suit didn’t layout specifically which patents Intertrust was accusing Apple of infringing, but the company counts digital rights management (or DRM) tech among its inventions. So it’s not too surprising that the two sides notified the court on Tuesday that a settlement had been reached… Read More

 

Apple seeking $2 billion in damages in new Samsung trial

By Cody Lee on Apr 1, 2014

As most of you know probably know by now, round 2 of Apple’s US patent battle with Samsung kicked off this week in a San Jose, California court room. The last time these 2 companies met on American soil, in the fall of 2012, Apple was awarded $1 billion in damages.

This time around, the iPad-maker is asking for twice that much. And although it’s using different patents, and going after different Samsung devices, it’s ultimately trying to prove the same thing as it did before: that Samsung intentionally copied its patented inventions… Read More

 

Apple’s ‘transparent texting’ tech aims to make it safer to walk and text

By Cody Lee on Mar 30, 2014

Last week, the United States Patent and Trademark Office published a patent application entitled ‘Transparent Texting’ that Apple filed in late 2012. In it, the company proposes to replace the background image of messaging applications with a live video feed from the device’s camera.

This effect would create the illusion that the device has a transparent display, allowing users to see what lies in front of them while they are texting. The goal of the invention is to make it safer for iPhone (and other mobile device) users to text and perform other functions while walking…
Read More

 

BlackBerry wins injunction against Typo keyboard case

By Cody Lee on Mar 29, 2014

BlackBerry won a key victory yesterday in its fight against Typo. A federal judge agreed with the Canadian company that the iPhone keyboard case likely infringes on their patents, and issued a preliminary injunction late Friday to halt sales.

For those that missed it, back in January BlackBerry sued the makers of the Typo iPhone case over patent infringement. The case features a built-in battery, and a physical, backlit keyboard that looks nearly identical to those used in BB devices… Read More

 

Apple engineer offers detailed look at development of original iPhone software

By Cody Lee on Mar 26, 2014

The Wall Street Journal published an interesting interview with Apple senior software engineer Greg Christie yesterday, in which Christie offers a detailed look at some of the events that led up to the original iPhone. Apparently the Cupertino company gave him permission to discuss the development process of the handset.

Admittedly, a lot of the things mentioned we’ve heard before—from book excerpts, court testimonies, etc.—but Christie does provide a few new details. For instance, he says at one point Jobs gave him and his team two weeks to come up with something or he would be reassigning the ‘iPhone software’ project to another group… Read More

 

Samsung removes standard-essential patents from upcoming Apple trial

By Christian Zibreg on Mar 9, 2014

Apple and Samsung will duke it out in the courtroom over technology patents later this month. As the second California trial looms (it begins March 31), the two technology giants have filed a stipulation with the United States District Court of California which narrows the second case, patent blogger Florian Müeller reported on his blog, FOSS Patents.

Under the stipulation, Samsung withdrew its asserted claims based on three standard-essential patents while Apple dropped all of its counterclaims relating to these patents… Read More

 

German court dismisses $2 billion patent troll suit against Apple

By Cody Lee on Feb 28, 2014

Earlier this month it was reported that Apple was getting sued for over $2 billion by known patent troll IPCom. The german company alleged that the iPad-maker violated one of its patents pertaining to priority access to channels for emergency responder.

But it doesn’t look like the suit will ever make it to trial. FOSS Patents is reporting that in a string of rulings handed down by the Mannheim Regional Court in Germany today, two of IPCom’s suits against Apple and one against HTC have been dismissed… Read More

 

Apple, Samsung and others demand patent trolling protection from EU judges

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 25, 2014

After asking the United States Supreme Court to approve of stiffer penalties for patent trolls who bring frivolous lawsuits against them, Apple and Samsung – along with seventeen other technology companies – have joined forces and issued a letter to the European Union asking for limits on injunctions in patent infringement cases.

As reported by Bloomberg, the companies are asking EU judges to curb patent trolls and introduce anti-trolling changes into Unified Patent Court and the upcoming European Unitary Patent systemRead More

 

Apple taking China’s patent office and Zhizhen Network Technology to court over Siri

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 24, 2014

According to a report by China’s state-run Xinhua News Agency, Apple is suing both the country’s State Intellectual Property Office and Shanghai-based Zhizhen Network Technology. The main point of contention: patent rights to Siri.

Now, eagled-eyed readers may remember that Zhizhen back in July of 2012 actually filed a case first against Apple as it felt Siri had infringed upon its patent for an instant messaging chat bot system called Xiaoi Bot.

Apple asked China’s State Intellectual Property Office, which is in charge of patent rights protection in China, to invalidate Zhizhen’s patent, but the request was declined. In turn, Apple is now suing both the patent office and Zhizhen… Read More

 

Samsung and Apple bosses fail to resolve patent disputes in mediation talks

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 14, 2014

We told you in January that Samsung and Apple CEOs were scheduled to meet for a new round of peace talks ahead of a trial next month. According to multiple reports today, the meeting between Apple CEO Tim Cook and Samsung mobile chief and co-CEO JK Shin indeed took place last week, but failed to yield tangible settlement opportunities.

As a result of the failed talks, the two frenemies are definitely going to slug it out in the courtroom all over again in a second California trial scheduled to kick off on March 31, 2014. Grab your popcorn… Read More

 

Apple top target for patent trolls, sued 92 times in 3 years

By Cody Lee on Feb 11, 2014

Apple has taken much criticism over the years for its patent litigation efforts, for going after Samsung, Motorola and other companies for violating its intellectual property. But what many don’t know is that the iPad-maker defends itself against just as many lawsuits.

In fact, according to some recently filed FTC documents, Apple has been litigated against by PAEs (or Patent Assertion Entity, commonly known as a patent troll) 92 times during the past 3 years. And that’s just the number of cases that actually made it to a courtroom… Read More

 

DoJ reprimands Samsung over leveraging standards-essential patents for import ban

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 10, 2014

The Galaxy maker Samsung has been reprimanded by the United States Department of Justice (DoJ) over its improper use of standards-essential patents in litigation. As Samsung leveraged standards-essential patents to seek an import ban against older Apple products into the United States, DoJ has decided to scold but not fine Samsung as a message of sorts to other companies that asserting these patents to hamper competition isn’t acceptable. The full reveal is after the break… Read More

 

Apple bands together with fellow tech titans to fight patent trolls of this world

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 5, 2014

Apple, along with Silicon Valley technology giants Google, Yahoo, Intel, Cisco and Facebook, is going after patent trolls – that is, companies whose only “products” are patents bought solely as a litigation weapon against others who actually use them in their own products.

Apple and others are now asking the United States Supreme Court to allow stiffer penalties for patent trolls who bring frivolous lawsuits, Bloomberg reported Wednesday.

Apple has a backlog of over 200 pending patent cases, most of them frivolous claims, and in every one of such lawsuits the company has been forced to bear its legal fees… Read More

 

A list of devices and patents involved in upcoming Apple-Samsung trial

By Cody Lee on Feb 5, 2014

Ahead of their high-profile trial, scheduled to start in March, Apple and Samsung have submitted a list of all of the patents they are accusing each other of infringing, and applicable devices. Well this is a pared down list, trimmed by each side at Judge Koh’s orders.

This is the second time the two will meet in Koh’s northern California courtroom. The first time around, Samsung was found guilty of infringing on a few Apple patents and was forced to pay close to $1 billion in damages. This time, there may be even more at stake… Read More

 
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