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Apple Applies For “Face Unlock” Patent – Sounds Awfully Familiar

I don’t want to anyone to dismiss this post as simple Apple bashing troll post but this is getting a bit ridiculous. Apple has recently applied to the USPTO for yet another patent on a technology not only currently in use today — but a main feature in Android 4.0; Face Unlock. Apple’s application describes the patent as a brand new technology that allows a user to unlock a device by using the features of their face. It’s not so much that I hate Apple and there’s no question Android is their single largest competitor (something the late Steve Jobs was hellbent on destroying). But when they’re blatantly applying for patents on key features found in Android, you really have to wonder if their intentions are simply to defend their own “innovations” — or simply steal the ideas of others and use them for ammunition in future lawsuits. Now, this doesn’t mean Apple will actually be awarded with this patent or that they will integrate into iOS but you have to wonder… where exactly Google is in all of this and why we don’t have websites dedicated specifically to their patent applications.

[PatentlyApple Via BGR]




  • The_ATL_Guy

    MAYBE GOOGLE SHOULD HAVE APPLIED!!!!!!!!!!! 
    WHEN will people wake the fuck up and see that this isnt anything personal….ITS CALLED BUSINESS! 
    Apple knows how to play the fuckin game while Google sits on the sidelines and ALLOWS Apple to do this to them! 
    You Android fanboys can hate apple until the cows come home but Apple is in the game and playing it to their and their customers advantage!

    • http://twitter.com/savagejeep SavageJeep

      The game is innovation NOT litigation. This will do nothing but tarnish Apple’s reputation. Even from Apple loyalist.

      • The_ATL_Guy

        What if its proven that Apple had worked on this LONG BEFORE Google? We really dont have all the facts do we?

        • http://twitter.com/savagejeep SavageJeep

          We don’t but as you say Apple is playing games. I don’t hate Apple, but I question some of their business practices. 
          Thanks for playing.

        • MarcusDW

          I bet this is the case.  Why else would Google NOT have applied already?

          • Aeires

            First to patent, not first to invent.  That’s the way the patent laws are written.  Apple is just being a DB by patenting things being used on Android.  

          • MarcusDW

            C’mon.  Why would Google invent Face Unlock and then just let it be stolen???  

          • Aeires

            Who’s to say they haven’t applied for a patent and didn’t make a public announcement about it?

          • The_ATL_Guy

            Ok but Apple applied for this patent Q2 of 2010. That is a long time ago! 

          • Aeires

            My bad, didn’t see when they applied.

        • TheWenger

          So if they’re both working on it at the same time (theoretically) what terrible thing is going to happen if both OSs have it. This whole “I came up with this very basic idea first” thing is just getting absurd. I’d rather both OSs have the feature and see which one is better, without some troll saying one is a ripoff of the other.

          • MarcusDW

            This is business.

          • The_ATL_Guy

            I have not ever stated that someone ripped off someone else. 

    • zeorai

      I’m impressed by your volume of posts on an Android site considering you don’t like the platform. 

      • The_ATL_Guy

        I dont like Android?
        Ya I only own 4 android devices, use google apps gmail for my business and countless other google services. 
        Ya I hate them . 
        You got me there genius. 

        • Aeires

          So you use Android but continually praise Apple, don’t know how anyone could have confused you with an iFan.  /s

          • The_ATL_Guy

            I realize that the concept of, “thinking for ones self” may be slightly above your paygrade. 
            Yes I am a fan of Apple but also of Google….GASP!!!!!!!!! EEEEEK!!!! I know I know your brain cant keep up. 

          • Aeires

            No need to play the stupid childish name games.

        • zeorai

          I think don’t like and hate have two different meanings. Also, I don’t appreciate your derogatory tone. Did I state anything other than what can be drawn from your posts? Your posts indicate you have little respect for the platform or the company developing it. If I misunderstand your stance on the platform, then my apologizes, but I don’t think there is a need to resort to any sort of name calling.

    • bigdav1178

      Well, according to your post, that means ethics no longer exist in business (at least for some businesses)… and sadly I can agree with that. It is also why I have come to completely swear off buying from certain companies. BTW, it has nothing to do with “their customers advantage” and everything to do with company and stockholder greed.

      • The_ATL_Guy

        LOL uuuuuuh there are MILLIONS of shareholders. 
        Infact if you are part of any kind of investment portfolio you probably own apple stock as well., 
        I guess that makes you greedy?

    • hemipw54

      Can you please Swype that for me on your iPhone , iPad ?

      • The_ATL_Guy

        I dont own an iPad or iPhone. Nice try though at trying to be cute. 
        I own the following:
        1 G1
        1 Cliq
        1 Nexus 1 
        1 HTC Sensation
        1 Galaxy s2
        1 Toshiba Thrive

        Are any of those Apple made?

    • chris125

      Except since this is in ICS apple won’t have shit on Google, a little something called prior art. Go ahead slurp on the apple teet a little more…

    • David Cramblett

      You don’t understand Google’s philosophy.  They are not big fans of software patents. They believe much of the “innovation” going on is just a “natural progression” of the technology and shouldn’t be patentable.  Google clearly developed the drop down notification system, do you see them suing Apple over stealing it? No. Google would let Apple use the face unlock technology as well.  
      Just because there is nothing in the article about Google, doesn’t mean they going to just let Apple get away with patenting something they are already using.I have seen countless patents, some that have been in existence for many years, overturned due to prior art.  Anyone who isn’t aware of this, just go take a look at PubPat’s website.

      • The_ATL_Guy

        I hope you are correct and prior art will supersede Apple’s patent application.
        Can Google even patent something they are giving away free?

    • http://twitter.com/Ike_Farmer Chris Franzen

      There’s something called Business Ethics. A class Steve Jobs never took.

    • Aeires

      Fortunately, patents can be overturned.  It’s already happened with many of the patents Apple went after Samsung and HTC with.

      • The_ATL_Guy

        Good than hopefully all this bs will end

  • JulianZHuang

    does google even applied for any patents???

  • blest

    Atl guy. You too hype simmer down.

  • http://www.vgchartz.com SuperChunk

    Why do you all think Google hasn’t applied for a patent for this already? Do you really think a company who recently has spent BILLIONS acquiring companies solely for their patents… hasn’t applied for a patent on this already?

    • Darin Kolls

      I was going to post with the same question. If Google is going to help the phone manufacturers making phones for Android, they better get to applying for some patents. Where are Google’s patent lawyers to stop Apple?

    • HalfwayCrook

      Sadly, I think you are wrong

    • Aeires

      Shame on Google if they haven’t.  It doesn’t take much to see how Apple is playing the game, if you sit by and let them do it, you get what you deserve.  Somehow though, I gotta think they are applying for patents, it just takes so long to get them approved.

      • http://www.facebook.com/danieljschuster Daniel Schuster

        Or you can respect Google for not stooping down to Apple’s level (six feet under to be exact) and trying to win customers by innovation, not killing the market. 

        • Aeires

          There is a lot of respect for just that, but they also need patents for the “just in case” scenarios that certain companies may create.

    • Christopher Davis

      Android is open source so it wouldn’t matter if they got a patent on it or not because anyone can use it if it’s included in Android.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Marcelo-Burrieza/100000489847678 Marcelo Burrieza

        Depending in the Type of Open source license used (GNU, Apache, etc), only other open source projects could use it and the are obligated to publish the code, but not closed ones like Apple or Microsoft.

        You can still patent things included in Open Source to protect your ideas, like Sun (Oracle), Red Hat, Mozilla and even Google did many times.

      • ssj4Gogeta

        But then Apple won’t be able to sue them.

    • http://twitter.com/aergern Ben Rosenberg

      They probably have. Who is to say they didn’t but it just hasn’t been found yet.

  • cnels

    Yea I’m not gonna lie. Google needs to drop their morals and play dirty like Apple and Microsoft. Yea Android is innovative but its time to start patenting everything and play the suing game like everybody else. Yea it stifles innovation and progress but its a dirty world until some one totally revamps this patent system

  • Tyson Terry

    Calm down there atl guy! Sounds like the article struck a chord there. You have to admit that apple is behind the game here. First the pull down menu, now this. Kind of ironic don’t you think, because it was not that long ago that everybody was crying that android was copying ios (which I am not denying took place).

  • BlackGod

    The rotten Apple didn’t fall from from tree near Steve Jobs’s grave..

    • fred12345

      This is just another sign that the patent process is broken. All these companies and their well paid patent lawyers are doing is taking advantage of it.  A proper patent process would see that this is already out there and probably already patented by someone else or by a combination of other patents.  Unfortunately if they miss this like they often do then Apple can take advantage of it in the future.

      • $8357570

        it’s not just the patent system, it’s what people are doing with it – such as what apple is doing in exploiting it.

        The patent system could be completely broken but if nobody abuses it then you don’t have these problems.

  • BigCiX

    Really apple….really!!!

  • http://Phandroid Victor

    Apple is just mad Android stole their glory.as the only thing apple iPhone has over Android is the retina display for now…smell apple is starting to rot.

    • http://twitter.com/PowerfulTux Arne Tobias Ødegaard

      Well, the HTC Rezound has a higher pixel density than the iPhone 4 and 4S, so Apple hasn’t even got that now.

      • http://www.facebook.com/james.ortiz0 James Ortiz

        teuche my friend you stole my words

    • Tim242

      The Galaxy Nexus LG Nitro HD, and HTC Rezound beg to differ : )

  • http://twitter.com/techbeck Mike B

    Ok Phandroid.  Leave BIASED out of it and read the whole article at patentlyapple.  There is a bunch more info you left out to express your distaste torwards apple and there are differences to the patent they are applying for.  I dont like apple, but be objective and post all the info.

    • Superguy

      And you don’t think a website named Patently Apple is biased?  Hahahaha

  • hldc1

    Xerox PARC ring a bell? After stealing Xerox’s ideas (WIMP: Window, Icon, Menu, and Pointing device), Steve Jobs was later quoted saying, “They just had no idea what they had.”

    I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: FUCK APPLE, AND THE HORSE THEY RODE IN ON.

    • troyboy30

      apple and microsoft didn’t steal anything from xerox they simply bought it for stupid cheap.  xerox actually invited them both to come check it out!

      • fred12345

        Yes, it really was Xerox’s failure in all that.  Jobs was absolutely correct.  Xerox didn’t realize how innovative and valuable what they were doing was.

      • zeorai

        Actually no, Xerox did not invite anyone.  Steve Jobs, being smart, wanted in on what Xerox was developing.  Since Apple was the hottest thing in Silicon Valley at the time, Steve Jobs agreed to allow Xerox to purchase $1 million dollars worth of Apple stock at the IPO price for permission to see their research.  I think it was a fair deal, but clearly Xerox didn’t understand they had developed the future. 

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=588783078 Guojian Miguel Joaquin Wu

          Jobs only “wanted in” on what Xerox was developing after repeated advice from other people and him brushing them off… then when he came around, he made it seem like it was “his” idea.

        • Frankenbike

          Xerox PARC didn’t have the right business model to exploit its inventions, and they made out very well on both the Apple and Microsoft deals. Apple’s deal alone wasn’t sweet enough to give them exclusive use of the Windowing system, which is why you also saw it on Amigas and later Windows, and there was nothing they could do about it.

          Xerox PARC actually made a lot of money on the deals, without having to tool up or create a whole new market, something a risk adverse company like the 70s and 80s Xerox wasn’t really willing to invest in. Short sighted? Maybe, when you look from the present back. But PARC invented all sorts of stuff that never made it to market, like all R&D efforts, and like all corporate management, Xerox execs couldn’t really tell the difference between them. So if there was a profit path for an invention they didn’t really believe in, it was a big win for them.

  • chris125

    You should not even be able to apply for a patent for something that is already being used. next apple will patent the use of a text message on a mobile device. smh

    • Joe St. Hilaire-Bona

      I agree, and I’m no patent lawyer (or lawyer of any kind), but I think there’s a law out there that prohibits patenting a technology that already exists in the marketplace.  Especially if the company seeking the patent didn’t innovate the technology. 

      • Christopher Davis

        You are correct, it’s called “prior art”

        • JRomeo

          I’ve heard that congress is considering changing the “prior art” law and replacing it with a “first to file” law regardless of prior art.

  • nhf7170

    It’s doubtful that this patent would be defensible, even in the fifth circuit, as it flies in the face of the legal doctrine of prior art.

  • David Cramblett

    You could be right.  If that’s the case though, then by patent rules apple can not patent this and they should withdraw their application to do so.  Will they?  I doubt it.

  • https://market.android.com/developer?pub=Ender's+Games+and+Apps Brian Ouellette

    well you got to read the article. It seem that how they implemented the face recognition is by making a 3d face using a distance orange image of the face. It then compares this 3d face with one stored on the device.

    I am led to believe that this unlock method can not be circumnavigated by having a picture of somebodies face to unlock it.

    edit* Looks like i was reading a different apple patent: 3D face and object recognition system

  • ERIFNOMI

    Apple would have to prove they came up with this idea first. That’s going to be tough when it’s already part of android. Chances are, they won’t get it.

    • miso_sori

      My understanding of the most recent changes to Patent law, the onus has been moved away from prior art and put on first to patent, so the fact that someone else created it will not have as much influence as it would have previously.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Marcelo-Burrieza/100000489847678 Marcelo Burrieza

        Prior Art still have prevalence to any patent applied, but to invalidate and not to dispute the patent. The new law says that first to apply wins over first to invent, but if there is prior art the patent is invalid.

        The first to invent cannot be granted the patent if other apply to it first. So if Apple applied first when a real product was already on sale, the patent will not be granted, but Google will not be able to apply for the patent Apple applied first. Really crazy stuff.

        • ssj4Gogeta

          That may well be their actual plan.

        • miso_sori

          Thank you for clarifying that, i appreciate it.

    • The_ATL_Guy

      why didn’t Google patent it?

      • http://twitter.com/mahmoud824 Mahmoud Shaaban

        I was thinking the same thing Why Google? i think it might be because they are open source so their ideas are free for anyone to use they just want to defend themselves from other companies that try to sue them buy buying companies with patents like Motorola which I think was a smart move but they need to invest more money.

        • The_ATL_Guy

          LOL! Look GOOGLE GIVE IT AWAY FREE BECAUSE THEY MAKE THEIR MONEY WITH AD REVENUE!!!!! ITS NOT SOME HIPPIE LOVE REASON!

          • mc5no4stp

            Troll

          • http://twitter.com/mahmoud824 Mahmoud Shaaban

            I never said it was “some hippie love reason” Google is an ad company but unlike other companies like Microsoft who charge manufacturers for windows phone license and its not open source. AND apple is also in the ad business its called iAD you don’t see them giving anything for free. I have never heard Google sue another company it always the other way around, every company has to make money some how but Google takes all these lawsuits against them and still provides open source projects and free software unlike other companies who charge for it and make money off of ads.

      • mc5no4stp

        Troll

      • Aslan N.L. Bollin

        because facial recognition and unlock software has been around long before Android 4.0
        They are not Apple. They do not consistently attempt to patent other peoples creations.

        It’s not difficult to prove prior art here. No point wasting the money. The way our patent system is, they’ll probably get the patent. To bad prior art exists which will make the patent useless. Making this a huge waste of money patenting it.

    • ShirtlessKirk

      Prior art: Sony VAIO circa 1998

  • Joe

    it would be smart to patent using a light for using face unlock in the dark…

  • Dino

    Wtf! Apple is SHIT. Google do something this is getting ridiculous

  • http://www.gmachine.net GMachine.net

    This is completely absurd!

    • The_ATL_Guy

      this is patently absurd!

  • http://www.ezphonedeals.com Steve Ramirez

    I understand it’s a game Apple is playing but how is it to a customer advantage that we are limited to one OS that is missing a lot of its competitors features.

    • The_ATL_Guy

      Good point! blame the patent game. 

      • https://openid.aol.com/opaque/fd6cdeba-3264-11e1-bc45-000bcdca4d7a ingua2

        Says the fanboi who must respond to everyone’s anti-Apple post on an Android forum.   

      • mc5no4stp

        Troll

  • Gino Melone

    Ya’ll should at least skim the referenced article.  “Apple’s patent application was originally filed in Q2 2010 by inventor Robert Mikio Free.”

    • ssj4Gogeta

      Many face-unlock apps using the webcam on your computer were available before then.

  • Andy_in_Indy

    From the source Article: 
    Apple’s patent application was originally filed in Q2 2010 by inventor Robert Mikio Free.

    This looks more like parallel thought than copying. 

    • The_ATL_Guy

      Could be! Now get ready to be called a troll. 

    • http://twitter.com/mahmoud824 Mahmoud Shaaban

      PittPatt already has a patent to detect a human face and Google bought them to create the face unlock feature. PittPatt was founded in 2004 and has been working with Google for a long time so Google is safe. And Apple would not use this feature because PittPatt (now Google) will have a reason to sue. So Apple is COPYING PittPatt not Google.

      • The_ATL_Guy

        Ok very cool! 

  • Bryan Bott

    If I’m correct Apple will not receive a patent on this due to Prior Art. In other words since Google already is using this a patent will not be issued to anyone else for it. So you can all calm down.

    • The_ATL_Guy

      well apparently the plot is thickening.  Apple supposedly applied for this a year and a half ago. 

      • ssj4Gogeta

        Face unlock apps have been in existence since long before that.

      • mc5no4stp

        Troll

  • David Mathisen

    Good God Chris, this is the second article in the last 24 hours that you have failed to READ the pertinent info. The patent was filed Q2 2010. IT WAS FILED OVER A YEAR AND A HALF AGO.

    • The_ATL_Guy

      oh wow so are you saying they filed for this before android released face detection?
      THE PLOT THICKENS! 

      • http://twitter.com/mahmoud824 Mahmoud Shaaban

        and THE_ATL_GUY asks more sarcastic questions! I wonder if he will respond to every comment because i can’t wait to hear what he writes next….. To Be Continued! 

        • The_ATL_Guy

          Hey thanks for being a fan!!
          What question would you like me to answer?
          I appreciate the support! 

        • The_ATL_Guy

          hmm thats weird, ”
          oh wow so are you saying they filed for this before android released face detection?”
          This seems like a reasonable question to me. 
          I realize some of your Apple haters really dont care about reasonable questions though since it really is just about hating apple unquestionably.

          • https://openid.aol.com/opaque/fd6cdeba-3264-11e1-bc45-000bcdca4d7a ingua2

            yes.. you’re repeating yourself just for the sake of trolling.  We get it.  Now get banned.

          • The_ATL_Guy

            Its funny that idiots like you think that the word banned scares people. 
            it’s pretty cute you’re following me around though

      • https://openid.aol.com/opaque/fd6cdeba-3264-11e1-bc45-000bcdca4d7a ingua2

        yes you posted that comment multiple times here.  Trolling doesn’t help out the conversation.

    • http://twitter.com/gamercore Chris Chavez

      Filed awhile ago like all patents, USTPO just released the info now. The part I find interesting is Google or no one else tried to patent the technology (granted Apple’s is an improvement of it) but Apple wants to horde it for themselves. 

      I’ve never had a problem with any company stealing someone else’s idea and building upon it. It’s how tech evolves. I just know that if granted the patent, Apple will use it for litigation against Android OEM’s (stifling innovation). 

      • David Mathisen

        If it was filed a while ago, why didn’t you mention that in the article? Instead you said “recently” which makes it look like  they filed it after ICS was announced. Do you not see what you did wrong there? Now there are 230-some comments on an article and I guarantee 99% of the posters took your article to mean that Apple filed it after ICS was out. Come on, man. It’s called responsible journalism.

        Google is a patent monster too, so let’s not make her out to be the good guy here. But I do think it is wrong to be able to patent something that doesn’t exist yet (or even have a prototype). Patenting ideas is just plain wrong.

  • androidica

    Apple is just taking a chance to see if it will be awarded this patent but there is a high chance it will not get it.If the ipad2 was not being used by my wife I will break it with a hammer.

    • The_ATL_Guy

      I hope they don’t get it for the sake of your wife’s iPad

      • androidica

        i hope not else its hammer to the ipad2

        • https://openid.aol.com/opaque/fd6cdeba-3264-11e1-bc45-000bcdca4d7a ingua2

          what context does that have any usefulness?

          • The_ATL_Guy


            what context does that have any usefulness?” 
            Dude you are seriously a wet blanket

    • Christopher Davis

      Exactly why I swore off Apple their dirty business practices fool most consumers because they blind them with their flashy products, but I don’t support a company that wants to wreck the technological innovation of today.

  • http://twitter.com/Ike_Farmer Chris Franzen

    or considering it’s pretty easy to figure out, they both used pretty much the same theory? lol. Regardless, Apple is only doing it to try to sue apple. Their app will be rejected and the world will be right again.

    • http://www.facebook.com/james.ortiz0 James Ortiz

      you mean sue google?

  • http://twitter.com/Ike_Farmer Chris Franzen

    lol he said recently. As far as patents go, that’s recent.

  • androidica

    What hurts me is how silent google is on this patent issue…say “Something!”..lol

  • http://www.facebook.com/ND32K9 Adam Diaz

    dude stfu

  • The_ATL_Guy

    I believe Aretha Franklin said it best:
    You walked in on the sly Scopin’ for love In the crowd, I caught your eye You can’t hide your stuff You came to catch You thought I’d be naive and tame You met your match I beat you at your own game (chorus) Who’s stealin’ who, take another look, tell me baby Who’s 
    stealin  who…oh Who’s 
    stealin ‘ who, now the fish jumped off the hook Didn’t I baby…Who’s 
    stealin ‘ who (repeat) Guess you believed the world Played by your rules Here stands an experienced girl Nobody’s fool… Don’t speculate you thought you had me covered, but I’ve got your bait You’re bound to be my lover…oh (chorus) You think you’re smooth That you can pickand choose When the time is right… But, just look behind, you’ll be surprised to find I’m gonna make you mine tonight…oh (chorus)  

    • https://openid.aol.com/opaque/fd6cdeba-3264-11e1-bc45-000bcdca4d7a ingua2

      I’m not sure of the context here.   Just more trolling?  Why haven’t you been banned yet?

    • mc5no4stp

      Troll

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WI7WJTN7CPQDTDQNU3PHKEAQCQ Scribe

        Regardless of how troll-ish your target may be, I respectfully suggest that you may not want to “stalk” someone’s posts like this in the future. I can’t help but feel like you’ve “spammed” the comments of this article with one-word “Troll” posts.

  • http://www.facebook.com/ND32K9 Adam Diaz

    kills urself douche

    • The_ATL_Guy

      come on man you really dont mean that buddy!
      More weird fetish references from you. 
      I once played, “patient” and  had a anal cleansing. 
      It was very erotic. 

      • mc5no4stp

        Troll

  • Justice Dean

    Seriously… Do as Adam says.  He made a valid point industry insiders have made over a few decades.  Apple and windows alike stole ideas from Xerox and xerox should technically own the modern computer.  

    As a side note… if some little sh!thead kid steals from a store I hate his @$$ to and will do everything I can to ruin him.

  • Aeires

    Because they applied for the patent after Android 4.0 released it.  If they were working on it, they would have patented it.  It’s first to patent, not first to invent.  All you have to do is think of the idea, then apply.

  • jeff1201

    I hope Apple doesn’t try to patent the stick figure as is shown in the diagram.

  • http://twitter.com/THEjprodriguez joshua rodriguez

    Sucks being apple since prior art will apply in any lawsuit brought to any vendor for Face Unlock…

  • Joshwa1

    They are patenting multi-user Face recognition not face recognition. Android fans are worst than ifans. Read the whole patent aplication first. And this article are very very incomplete. :/

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WI7WJTN7CPQDTDQNU3PHKEAQCQ Scribe

      Even so, this patent is still laughable.  It’s simply putting together two common aspects of computing.  Those aspects being user profiles and biometrics.

      The face recognition (which is just biometrics) is combined to identify the user and adjust the behavior of the device to that user’s preferences (user profile).

      It’s an obvious implementation of existing technology and practice.  Hardly worth a patent.

  • aiden9

    Right… Apple (who is known for patenting everything including the kitchen sink even if they’ll never ever use) made plans to implement it, google got those plans and not only made it but featured it in a major update, all months before Apple applies for a patent on the same thing. Those dastardly Google employees must have a time machine!

    I’m sorry but thats really grabbing at straws. Precedents show Apple has a history of patenting just to sue.

  • Christopher Davis

    You are a mental troll, the technology is already in use by google so it is in no way Apples innovation.

    • The_ATL_Guy

      LOL , “mental troll”. 
      Good one. 

      • PC_Tool

        He’s not just a troll, he;s also completely mental…

      • mc5no4stp

        Troll

  • aiden9

    The question is, does this fall under the old patent system or the “America Invents act”. Under the latter Apple would have full right to it assuming no one else already owns the patent. Show just how much that act (and congresses knowledge of patents) blows.

  • http://www.iDoiDevices.com/ Jason Yeaman

    There was facial unlock on an iPhone loooooooong before android thought of it…

    • The_ATL_Guy

      UH OH!!!!!!
      I thought Google was all about peace, love, happiness!!!
      GASP!
      They may have stolen something from Apple!!
      SHOCKING!
      Both companies steal. Can we now move on?
      This should end the COUNTLESS numbers of posts on this forum that even on articles not related to apple go into an, “I hate Apple” dialogue.

      • https://openid.aol.com/opaque/fd6cdeba-3264-11e1-bc45-000bcdca4d7a ingua2

        Can we now move on?  You certainly haven’t.  You intend on posting a response to every thread on here regarding the subject.  Are you too passive aggressive to move on?

    • SadSack99

      Oopsies… Too late to edit our I HATE APPLE! posts…

    • Danny Vargas

      That was only for jailbroken iPhones, not something that Apple developed.

  • http://www.facebook.com/adyogi Aaron Dyogi

    WHAT WILL THEY PATENT NEXT? THE BACKLIGHT?

  • ScottColbert

    You really are an asshole.

    • The_ATL_Guy

      I cant stand obnoxious douche nozzles that use their full name as their handle. 
      Its like they have a small cock and need to compensate. No one gives a shit about your full name. 

      2009 called and they want their avatar back.

      • https://openid.aol.com/opaque/fd6cdeba-3264-11e1-bc45-000bcdca4d7a ingua2

        because being called “The ATL Guy” is so much better?   Attacking other users on this site? Still not banned?

      • mc5no4stp

        Troll

  • http://www.facebook.com/jleeroman Jonathan Lee Roman

    apple is stupid. 

    • jj14x

      Cunning/crafty? Yes. 
      Stupid? No.

  • Guest

    Shocker. And everyone wonders why Android gets sued so often. It isn’t because Apple invented anything first. The only thing innovative about Apple these days is their patent purchases. Flash back to the 80s of that big brother commercial, the irony is they were big brother all along.

  • https://market.android.com/developer?pub=Ender's+Games+and+Apps Brian Ouellette

      Apple be trollin

  • jeff1201

    You may want to look up the definition of ignorant. It was a joke. Sorry if it went over your head.

  • skynet11

    Unfortunately, Apple will likely be awarded the patent, despite “prior art” already existing. There have been many articles in the past about Apple being awarded patents in similar circumstances (for example, Apple suing Samsung over tablet technology that existed long before the iPad). It seems that the Patent Office is simply there to rubberstamp everything submitted by Apple. How often do you hear of Apple being denied a patent? It’s happened before, but only very rarely. What hasn’t been a rare occurrence is Apple getting awarded a patent for technology already on the market and then suing (and usually winning) the companies who originally invented it! Apple practically owns the patent system and the courts. I absolutely despise Apple’s “litigate because we no longer innovate” policy!

    • http://www.ScottAllyn.Us ScottAllyn

      What “prior art” already existed when apple applied for this patent, tho? This patent application was filed over a year before Google showed it off with the Galaxy Nexus.

      • jj14x

        IBM/HP had it on their PCs back in 2007

        • https://sites.google.com/site/barry99705/ barry99705

          But not on their phones.

          • jj14x

            Apple’s patent is not restricted to phones – their “Presence detection” patent is for computers, phones, tablets – any device. Since this technology already exists on computers/tablets, how can apple claim a patent on this?

    • Lee Drake

      It comes down to patenting a process in a utility patent application. In which case, Google can include a step involving a magical white rabbit to differentiate. It is hard to differentiate processes. 

  • ahomad hosin

    for some apple fanboys, don’t lie to yourselves, if apple had it before google, they should have included it in iOS5. we don’r need evidence for that. it is just logic. why would they have it and just hide it. especially they had nothing special to show in iOS5.

    • The_ATL_Guy

      LOL maybe because this stuff doesnt happen over night?
      Maybe you should question Google as to why they dont PROTECT THEIR SHIT! 

      • Zenstrive

        They don’t need to. Their products are so good and widely usable they don’t need protections. Unlike Apple and its cult of dictatorship.

      • ahomad hosin

        well, Google had it first, so its Google’s idea. its been couple of months since google has it and still we didn’t hear anything from apple.
        and why Google didn’t protect their ideas, because they are not patent troll, unlike others. apple applying for patents not to protect their ideas (which they stole most of them) but to use it to sue others.
        I saw a diagram couple of weeks ago shows the patents sues, apple suing over five companies and it was interesting how many patents Google has, but they are not suing no one.

        • iKing_2

          “well, Google had it first, so it’s Google’ idea.”

          Yeah….kinda like multitouch…..and visual voicemail….and proximity sensor…..and pinch to zoom…..and pop-up keyboard….and magnifying glass…..and…..well you get the point…..I hope

          • ahomad hosin

            oh, yeah, I can now (tow years later) sue apple because I thought of the iphone4 design before they did. how is that?

  • yankeesrule587

    Apple can only go in one direction after the horrible year they’ve had in terms of suing, patenting, blocking the sale of competitive products, that is down..As ive said in the past, i hope they go so low that Google buys them, takes what they want, and scrap the rest of the company…I disagree that competition breeds innovation, if this year proves anything, it proves that competition creates greed, hate, and distrust, and that is eventually going to sink the whole industry. 

  • Jeff432

    Why didn’t Google try to patent this first?

  • fredphoesh

    what staggering wankers apple are…

  • Lee Drake

    Sorry folks, but this patent was filed in June of 2010 – a link to the patent is below. Generally speaking, 18 months passes between the filing of a patent application and when it is made public. I don’t know when Google started working on face unlock, but it isn’t fair to say that Apple copied Google when they filed their application well over a year before Google’s tech was demoed. For all you know, Google found out Apple was working on this and rushed their product to market. 

    (http://appft1.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO2&Sect2=HITOFF&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsearch-adv.html&r=15&p=1&f=G&l=50&d=PG01&S1=%2820111229.PD.+AND+Apple.AS.%29&OS=PD/12/29/2011+AND+AN/Apple&RS=%28PD/20111229+AND+AN/Apple

  • david

    I really hope apple doesn’t get away with this stuff. This is ridiculous. It makes me wish apple would just go away all together

    • iKing_2

      If Apple applied for this patent in June of 2010, well before ICS and even 6 months prior to the release of Gingerbread, explain what exactly are they trying to get away with?

  • https://openid.aol.com/opaque/fd6cdeba-3264-11e1-bc45-000bcdca4d7a ingua2

    surprised you still have the ability to post here.   You do nothing but troll.  

    • jshaffer21

      why dont we just flag everything he posts?

    • mc5no4stp

      I just went through and added the comment “Troll” to every one of his posts on this thread alone and almost lost interest he trolls so much. 

  • https://openid.aol.com/opaque/fd6cdeba-3264-11e1-bc45-000bcdca4d7a ingua2

    Insightful troll.

  • https://openid.aol.com/opaque/fd6cdeba-3264-11e1-bc45-000bcdca4d7a ingua2

    we get it.  You’re here to troll.  Can someone just ban this assmeat?

  • puppeteer23

    Uh… prior art: every lenovo ideapad from the past 3 years. They better not get this patent just because those were laptops.

  • https://openid.aol.com/opaque/fd6cdeba-3264-11e1-bc45-000bcdca4d7a ingua2

    “butt hurt”?   Another homophobic slur.   Still not banned?

    • The_ATL_Guy

      Why do you cry like a little bitch so much?
      Butt hurt is a pretty used expression and I am gay so how does that matter?

      • mc5no4stp

        Troll

  • http://twitter.com/SoDroid SoDroid (Eli)

    “Where exactly Google is in all of this and why we don’t have websites dedicated specifically to their patent applications”.

    THIS^^

    At this point it is obvious that any technological addition or innovation is a weapon that tech firms can use against each other to pull in more customers and more money in the way of licensing. Anything Google shows at a conference should be in the patent process PRIOR to its unveiling.

    The fact that Apple can submit a facelock patent and steal the notification bar from Android, after it has already been established, is evidence that every thought related to mobile tech needs to be protected.

    This is not Apple’s fault. Yes they are conniving but they are simply acting in their best interest. Google needs to do the same by protecting their properties and fighting in court when necessary. Apple is playing this patent game hard, anyone wanting to compete MUST do the same.

    I really hope the lawsuits start to fly once the Google acquisition of Moto Mobile is concluded.

    • AGx

      I disagree with some of what you said. Technology doesn’t need to be protected like this. As software patents go, I don’t think they should grant the owner the right to force others not to use the technology and ban their products but only to force licencing. The DOJ and FTC are always investigating antitrust issues because they think it hurts the consumer yet the USPTO is legally creating pain for the consumer.

      • http://twitter.com/SoDroid SoDroid (Eli)

        I agree with you that technology should not require this protection, but due to how patents are now being used (not to protect but to force licensing fees) it is only being responsible for every company to license patents on their properties.

        The affect of this patent battle is stifling innovation and the ones who ultimately bear the burden are the consumer, you’re absolutely correct in that the USPTO is creating pain for the consumer. I hope they change their guidelines and policies soon for the sake of the consumer.

  • jj14x

    not sure if somebody already mentioned this… but other blogs indicate that Apple apparently filed their patent in 2009 (before ICS brought this feature out)
    (of course IBM/HP had this on their notebooks before then, so not sure how this patent will be approved for Apple..

    • AGx

      I just read this one another site and you know the first ting that came to mind? 

      “Another example of Apple applying for patents for technology they cant even prove they can use.” 
      They basically want to own a technology they have no products for and be able to legally sue companies that have been able to use it. They applies for this back in 2009? Its 2011 and Google has a product that uses a technology they are trying to say they invented in 2009 and still have no examples of. And you know what? I bet they’ll be granted the patent. 

      Google needs to patent their notification system and force Apple to drop that shit out of iOS.

      • The_ATL_Guy

        wow man you are stretching. Companies plan things for years before they are able to bring it to market. You apple haters will hate no matter what. You will create these fantasies in your head. Sad really. 

        • mc5no4stp

          Troll

        • ratnok

          What is sad is that you have nothing else better to do than to troll Android blogs.

  • Patrick Ryan

    Google didn’t even invent this technology. Kinect was using facial recognition before Android. Even then, Microsoft didn’t invent this technology.

    A patent can also not be awarded for something that is obvious. Of course, obvious is subject to interpretation, but there are guidelines in place. This is why no one has a patent on a vehicle that is mobile via wheels. It obviously needs wheels to move.

    I’m not saying this doesn’t get abused. Patents are awarded for obvious things in the tech industry all the time because the bureaucrats in charge of the patent system have little knowledge about the industry that they are over seeing. Until the patent system is reformed, we put knowledgeable individuals in charge of the patent system, and penalties are placed on companies that make patent applications such as this one, it will never change.

  • JulianZHuang

    if granted, ICS will be doom.

  • The_ATL_Guy

    Screw this patent crap. 
    Can we talk about how smooth and butter like the Samsung Galaxy S2 is?

    • mc5no4stp

      Troll

  • The Hater

    Unbelievable

  • ssj4Gogeta

    And your theory/guess/wishful thinking that maybe Google got some intel about Apple working on some such thing and Google probably rushed it to the market should be believed over the hard fact that Google has face unlock shipping in their phones today and countless face-unlock apps have been available for the PC for years?

  • jshaffer21

    A: google should have already had this patent filed,so you have to wonder where they’ve been on this one

    B; maybe they’re filling for a patent on a facelock that actually works reliably,that would be completely different than what google has

  • Zenstrive

    Please someone ban 
    The_ATL_Guy 

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Robert-Simmons/1383027417 Robert Simmons

      I think they did! 

  • mc5no4stp

    Troll

  • mc5no4stp

    Troll

  • mc5no4stp

    Troll

  • mc5no4stp

    Troll

  • mc5no4stp

    Troll

  • mc5no4stp

    Troll

  • mc5no4stp

    Troll

  • mc5no4stp

    Troll

  • mc5no4stp

    Troll

  • mc5no4stp

    Troll

  • mc5no4stp

    Troll

  • ahomad hosin

    next, they will apply for notification bar patent, LOOOL

  • REVS

    how are they even allowedto apply for this patten ???
    so can i just go apply for a patten for the modern televison ?? i dont understand people are already using this lol
     

  • troyboy30

    nice of phandroid to leave out the most important part!  maybe just to cause trouble?

    Update: An important thing to note is that Apple applied for this patent long before Android’s Face Unlock debuted a few months back. The paperwork was first submitted on June 29th, 2010 — it’s just now being disclosed to the public.

    • iKing_2

      Of course they left it out to cause trouble….because they knew their uninformed aSheep would jump all over anything Apple…..

      Baaaaaaa….

      • ratnok

        You iCultists are everywhere. Now you troll Android blogs while using descriptions of iSheep to characterize others? How sad. Just remember this number and move on :700,000 a day.

        • iKing_2

          Apple iPhone = 66% of smartphone profits
          All other iPhonies = 34%

          NOW we can move on….

  • CallahanRoger

    @troyboy30:disqus Steve Jobs was later quoted saying, “They just had no idea what they had.”…my roomate’s sister-in-law makes $86 hourly on the laptop. She has been fired from work for 8 months but last month her pay was $8535 just working on the laptop for a few hours. Read more on this site…http://ufil.ms/AF8ll

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Robert-Hoellering/649953679 Robert Hoellering

    Android is open source and as far as i know you cant patent open source.

  • cyanogenuser84

    I love seeing everyone uniting against trolls!!! LOL Sometimes I come here just to laugh at ATLGUY…. 

  • Luxferro

    I hate Apple so much! I hope all apple management and upper VP’s all die of horrible diseases ASAP. 

  • jman2u

    Chris, Apple DID NOT just “recently apply” for this patent. It was applied for about 18 months ago. You embarrass yourself and call into question your journalistic integrity by writing stuff like this.

    If you all are too simple to recognize the fact that there are DIFFERENT ways to do things, then please don’t waste your time commenting. Apple’s form of facial recognition has significant differences with Google’s Face Unlock that allow it to be patented. The USPTO will not grant the patent unless that is the case. There are countless examples of situations like this so it’s nothing new.
    You will never hear Apple claim that they have invented facial recognition. They know they haven’t. They are patenting THEIR version as it relates to a smartphone, tablet, or laptop.And lest you forget, Former Google CEO and current Executive Chairman used to sit on Apple’s Board of Directors. Do you think maybe he heard that Apple was working on facial recognition for their devices? Or any number of other features that Google then started working on too??? Hmmm….So, instead of basing your opinion on a few paragraphs, how about actually doing some research on your own and looking into it yourself. Or, is that too much work for you???From Wired.com…”This most recent Apple patent application describes technology that would work even if an iPhone, iPad or MacBook were switched off. When it senses someone approaching, it would transition to a different state to acknowledge and then identify the potential owner’s presence. The facial recognition system could also be used to recognize a group of people, useful if a device is used by a team in the workplace.What about the gaming Apple’s technology, the same way Ice Cream Sandwich face unlock can be gamed? Well, Apple’s patent would use a technique called orange-distance filtering to determine “attentiveness.” If the orange skin tone portions of the image aren’t detected a certain way, the system would know it’s looking at a photo and not a real person. Unfortunately, I’m not sure if this means it would work against someone wearing a “Mission Impossible”-style full face mask.This patent application was filed in Q2 of 2010.”Does Android Face Unlock do this? Nope. Hence, Apple’s patent application. Also, my bet is that Apple’s implementation won’t be fooled by a “picture”. Which begs the question…why are you all so proud of Android Face Unlock? Google should be embarrassed and you as Android fans should be pissed.

    • jman2u

      From Wall Street Journal on 01/22/2010…

      http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703405704575015362653644260.html“One person familiar with the matter said Apple has put significant resources into designing and programming the device so that it is intuitive to share. This person said Apple has experimented with the ability to leave virtual sticky notes on the device and for the gadget to automatically recognize individuals via a built-in camera. It is unclear whether these features will be included at launch.”

    • http://MyShocker.com Nudo

      Sounds like what Kinect does. Maybe Microsoft should be pissed off.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Robert-Simmons/1383027417 Robert Simmons

        You comparing apples to oranges. With that being said I dont mind that the Android face unlock can be fooled. If someone wants your phone THAT BAD that they carry around a picture of you than you have bigger problems. 
        I DO like that I can add that as a layer of security without the annoyance of a pattern lock or unlock code. 

  • fauxfire27

    Have any of You even watched pirates of silicon valley?! this is just apple doing the same thing apple is done for years. Taking advantage of a company that is ill prepared, and / or vulnerable, for what they’ve built is apple’s modus operandi. The only reason that this is news now, is because now apple has a true competitor. Apple figured it would dominate the smartphone seen for years. Unfortunately when google came out with android it was a work of art that could (and is currently) threatening apple’s market share. The only recourse apple has is to sue, and that’s only if they wanna stay on top of the smartphone scene. Now if they lose all these patent suits then all they’re going to have is what they can come up with themselves, and that scares the shit out of apple. That’s why we as android users need to stand up for our free and (quasi) open source platform. If we let apple continue on its current path android will scease to be, leaving apple on top. RISE UP MY ANDROID BRETHREN! AND TASTE THE SWEET NECTAR OF THE TEARS OF THE APPLE!

  • Aslan N.L. Bollin

    Once again Apple trying to say they invented something that someone else created. This has been around for along time now. Long before Google added it to Android 4.0.

    Sorry Apple. It won’t be difficult proving prior art on this one. You should try wasting money actually inventing something new sometime rather then trying to patent other peoples inventions…

  • Top Gear

    I’m becoming more sure by the day that Phandroid’s readers are retarded.

    • B2L

      Not all of us are retarded. I will admit that some aren’t exactly what I would call “smart”.

  • icecold23

    After reading through the patent, seems fairly lofty, but a good idea none the less.

    Still, the technology in the patent is pretty specific, so I doubt it would affect Android’s current version of Face Unlock. Still, could be troublesome if they wanted to improve on the feature in the future, which in its current form is definitely flawed. As of right now, I’d say it is more of Android’s Siri. While Siri is a better end product between the two, it is still just bells and whistles and not really a game changer.

  • ahomad hosin

    oh, yeah, I can now (tow years later) sue apple because I thought of the iphone4 design before they did. how is that?

  • aguirretim42284247

    my buddy’s half-sister makes $73/hr on the laptop. She has been unemployed for 6 months but last month her pay was $8247 just working on the laptop for a few hours. Read more on this site… LazyCash1 .com

  • Perry_F

    Apple’s motto is “if we can’t out innovate them then let’s out litigate them” Gotta hand it to them though, brass balls. Trying to get a patent on a technology that is currently being used by your biggest competitor is priceless.

  • InspectorGadget80

    First they would grant APPLE the patent then APPLE will sue Samsung again and BAN ALL OF OUR DEVICE. This shit is really pissing me off.

  • https://sites.google.com/site/barry99705/ barry99705

    Do the “editors” of this site even look at what they’re posting?  Apple applied for the patent over a year ago.

  • Paul Bramstedt

    There is a patent for this. The application dates back to 2008. Page 3 shows a user holding a phone sized mobile computing device. 

    http://www.google.com/patents?id=8AnIAAAAEBAJ&pg=PA5&dq=facial+recognition+unlock&hl=en&sa=X&ei=Vib-TtuwEYjDgQfM1e2MAg&ved=0CDMQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=facial%20recognition%20unlock&f=false 

  • Manbo

    Maybe I’m just ignorant to how the US patent system works, but could the patent not be disputed if awarded to Apple as they were not either the developer or the first to implement this technology? Or is it really just whoever says they did it first wins, no matter what?

  • 4wallz

    I can’t imagine that the patent office would allow them to patent a technology that is in “widespread” use already.