Here’s a small victory (if you can call it that) for Samsung up against the possibility that they may have had to cease sales and advertisement of the Galaxy S, S II and Ace. They claimed Samsung violated patents of Apple’s which describe sliding on-screen to unlock a device and scrolling in the gallery (and the “bounce” after you hit the beginning or end of a list of photos). A judge has ruled that the slide-to-unlock patent claim and nine others are invalid and that that their infringement on the gallery patent can be remedied by disposing of the application – they’ll likely update it to comply. [Samsung Tomorrow (Translated)]
More information after a natural English translation/account of the proceedings. A judge ruled that the reason Apple’s claims were invalid is due to prior art and function. Specifically, they point out a 2005 phone (before anyone even knew of the iPhone) called the Neonode that had a similar slide-to-unlock feature.
They also said that the Galaxy S and S II’s device likeness claims are invalid due to the LG Prada – released well before the iPhone (2006) – taking precedence. Finally, the graphical user interface claim was thrown out due to the Nokia 7710, a 2004 phone that also boasted a grid-like interface for scrolling through applications.
“Most interesting note: the judge specifically mentions that by having such a minimalist design, the iPad basically makes itself less viable for design protection.”
Read more at osnews.com.
[Updated to achieve accuracy after rough translation, add additional details.]