Newly granted Apple user interface patent could cause headaches for Android camp

Apple’s latest patent should give Google and its stable of Android device manufacturers reason to worry. Granted just today, the latest addition to the Cupertino-based tech giant’s stable of intellectual property could be the mother of all smartphone software patents, granting Apple rights to many aspects of touch-based user interfaces, including the display of documents, a camera roll, messaging, and email on mobile devices. The initial filings date back to as early as 2007.

The bad news for Android and its hardware partners is that this patent will likely become a stable of future patent infringement claims coming from Apple’s court. The effects could be swift and lethal, depending on how descriptions of user interface elements are leveraged. Apple continues to stand by their rights to legally protect and defend the innovations that have arisen alongside their flagship mobile devices, but the granting of such a broad patent could have the negative effect of stifling competition in the marketplace and limiting software advancements.

And the patent could reach its icy fingers into other realms, potentially creating a legal basis to go after the makers of apps and also opening up attacks on other smartphone platforms. We’ll see how quickly Apple acts on these latest rights, but when they do expect the legal battle to be more grueling than ever.

[via Wired | Thanks, Andrey!]

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  • Jason Freels

    Kudos to the company that will eventually kill the smartphone entirely.

    • NYCHitman1

      Geniusphone anyone?

    • http://www.geeksonhugs.com/ W. Anthony Tanas

      Google glasses. Augmented reality. It’s coming.

  • thistimearound

    Who grants a patent like this? Seriously… “You have a mobile device and it shows information? Yeah, we patented that.” ~ Pirates of Silicon Valley

    • effApple

      Lets hope Judge Posner gets to preside over any lawsuits this crap brings

    • drosspike

      Same people who grant Google and Motorola patents that you so conveniently support.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=692898887 Phucka PhaceBuuk

        yea, ok.. keep dreaming buddy. Apple is the laughing stock in court rooms. With their frivolous lawsuits and micromanaged law teams. I say we burn apple to the ground.

        • drosspike

          Nice, intelligent recourse.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=520190249 Nick Kathrein

            Google only uses their patents that (should be shared) when they get sued by apple for this dumb stuff. It would be different if they started all this but they instead counter sue

          • drosspike

            So what you’re saying is that Google uses its FRAND patents to countersue against Apple’s IP patent lawsuits. That is egregiously wrong on Google’s part. Like I mentioned, when a company invents non-standards essential IP, they have a right (and legal obligation) to protect it, just like Porsche/VW with DSG. This is and always has been Apple’s stance. They have never sued an entity for infringing on their FRAND patents without offering a fair market license first. For this specific multitouch behavior patent, everything in it is original, and Android had nothing like it at the time (since it was a Blackberry clone and not the iPhone clone it is now)

          • http://twitter.com/kchan4487 Kristian Gomez

            The problem with some of Apple’s patents is the existence of prior art. Some designs which they have been granted patents for has been used in phones existing before there even was an iPod Touch. To give an example, even my old N70 has the capability to have a phone number/email in an SMS message as a selectable hyperlink that allows the user to directly call or text or email it. Apple recently acquired the patent for it (I don’t know how) and used it to temporarily block the selling of the HTC One X in the US.

            To put it simply, Apple should not be able to get patents for things that they did not invent, but they are getting it. They are even trying to get patents for things that shouldn’t even be patented, like the shape and size of the boxes the phones come in.

            The argument that Apple is trying to protect its inventions doesn’t hold ground because some of the things Apple is trying to patent isn’t even their inventions. Its basically equivalent to Mercedes suddenly getting a patent for a circular wheel, forcing all other car makers to make wheels of a different shape.

            Also, other mobile companies before Apple came along do not seek to ban the competition because of infringed patents, rather they ask for royalties, basically earning from the competition.

      • http://twitter.com/imnuts07 Mark

        Yeah, cause Google and all the Android OEMs are out there filing lawsuit after lawsuit against everyone else…

        • drosspike

          Of course they do. Especially Android OEM’s. Samsung and Motorola have several FRAND lawsuits waged against their competitors. This is the lowest form of patent litigation: suing the competition instead of allowing them to license your standards-essential patents. I can easily see Samsung doing this since they’re a South Korean mafia (never could understand anyone being a Samsung fanboi), but it’s shameful for Motorola to stoop so low. Patent reform that abolishes this behavior can’t come soon enough.

  • http://www.facebook.com/Spikedogg1 Christian Eric Clay

    And just like that Apple becomes the IBM Goliath they so detested.

    • http://twitter.com/mikedonatello Mike Donatello

      I’m pretty sure that Apple’s been that way for a while now.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=692898887 Phucka PhaceBuuk

        not like IBM.. they are fairly new at being big.

  • KISSfan8562

    Apple can shove their donut-shaped headquarters right up their ass.

    • Sean Daniel

      It’s shaped like a donut? I think Homer Simpson could solve this problem for us…

  • Mitchmoney

    Is this serious? Did they also patent the earth? air? water? cell phones that make phone calls? internet?!?!?!

    • MG83

      They just need fire and heart. Then we’re f’d.

      • midnightsaga

        As your patent’s combine….

        • bob

          I am captain asshole! I mean apple…

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

          I…. am………………. Captain Patent Troll!

          *Captain Patent Troll, he’s Cook’s hero. Gonna take innovation down to zero….*

          • LawrenceMcatee

            I saw this happening and I was unable to stop it. I don’t know if I am more mad about apple being a cuntirno or the fact that we all just got combo’d on.

          • MWFish

            C-C-C-Combo Breaker!

          • LawrenceMcatee

            Dear diary, today op was a pretty cool guy. freddymercury.jpg

      • No_Nickname90

        F that!! Apple ain’t goin’ patent Captain Planet. >=.o

    • Haxcid

      Everyone knows that Al Gore invented the internet…

      • Matt Tanksley

        His patent is still pending…

  • http://profiles.google.com/mjsoctober Michael Schmidt

    Something I don’t understand about this system… are competitors incapable of, or otherwise prohibited from, seeing a database of _pending_ patents that have been filed and are in queue? I mean, if this was filed back in 2007, did no one at Google think to look through the pending patents during their own development period to see what might be coming down the pipe that would be a problem?

    • Marsg

      yea but nobody thought they could actually get the patents, they are so ridiculous and broad on the subjects

    • Ben Schaefer

      I think they probably thought that such a ridiculous patent would get thrown out

    • spicymeatball

      The patents are granted and then have to be contested as to their validity in court. So basically the patent office pushes the validation of a patent to the courts instead of dealing with them themselves and not granting them just for the asking.

    • Perplexicles

      Maybe no one suspected that Apple would be granted a patent for something so incredibly stupid and far-reaching?

    • Mike Minor

      Remember that Google does not have a history of using patents as market weapons. They choose innovation and R&D, as an engineering company, over bully tactics.

  • scoter man1

    I’m still going with my #BoycottAppleForLife

  • BigCiX

    If they win this case all hell will break loose

    • Mike Minor

      There is no case as of yet..

  • MG83

    How the hell is this granted? Something like this requires the phone carriers and manufacturers both taking a stand. Apple is going to want every smart phone in the country banned.

  • root4life

    i just don’t understand how patents are still getting granted to anyone these days with the system like it is but i guess money talks? the patent office is a joke.

  • user311

    WOW, Apple is amazing. They took prior art and made it their own. How uniquely original of them… This patent needs to get thrown out.

    • Thomas

      According to who? What do you know of the prior art in this case? You are an armchair patent lawyer. A biased one at that.

      • user311

        Lets see, prior art involving a mobile device which displays information prior to 2007. Golly Gee I guess you got me there… because nothing existed before your precious icrap. You are a failure of a human-being. A dumb one at that.

        • drosspike

          Read the patent. It describes UI behaviors, such as swipe activated scrolling that fades in a scroll bar but only during its inertial stage. These UI applications were unique to the iPhone at the time. Android, Surface, Blackberry etc had no such technology.

          • http://twitter.com/EATTablets EAT Tablets

            Palm OS had touch-based proportional scroll-bars circa 2000 and even the Amiga OS had proportional scroll-bars albeit mouse-based. Prior art coming out left right and centre.

          • drosspike

            Again read the patent. as you are confusing desktop scrollbars with what’s in iOS. Again this is a multitouch swipe triggered action, where a scroll bar, which is invisible when the UI is static, appears unframed and semi-transparent, only during inertial scrolling. Swipe, multitouch triggers, inertial scrolling, and frameless scrollbars that appear only after the aforementioned behaviors are completely unique to iOS. That is, until Android copied them.

          • Aldi

            Similar ideas of semi transparent, unframed, and invisible inactive scrollbars had existed long before the smartphones even existed. I had witnessed these implementations many times in early 2000 in many Flash-based websites and Director-based interactive CD-ROMs.

          • http://twitter.com/rmagruder randymagruder

            I’m intrigued, Aldi. Can you see if you can nail down specifics on this. I will agree this patent is being overhyped. It’s nothing but a common sense “hide it when not scrolling” patent. It is both easy to work around and a very obvious thing, not something only some genius at Apple could figure out. Hiding inactive elements on a window has happened forever. Perhaps not as precisely as defined in the patent, but happens all the time. Hiding the scrollbar when not scrolling … well, if ‘menithings’ thinks that’s ‘amazing’ and ‘brilliant’, there’s really not reasoning with him.

          • drosspike

            Another thing you’re confusing is how the pre-iPhone Palm OS worked in terms of scrolling. That OS (which BTW borrowed heavily from Apple’s Newton) had proportional scroll bars where the user would need to directly select them to move up and down the page. The iPhone’s scrollbars are inaccessible directly, and as I said, aren’t even visible when the screen is static. They don’t have recessed rectangular frame either, but simply float on top as temporary pill-shaped elements.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=692898887 Phucka PhaceBuuk

        This technology has been on many smartphones long before this.. Apple is a joke for trying to pull this game. And they will lose their overall progress by trying it. This company is seriously going to hit the “shytter” soon.

        • drosspike

          Show me any multitouch aware CD ROM content with inertial scrolling and rubber banding. Show me any mutitouch aware FLASH content. Now show me their patents that prove prior art. You can’t. This patent represents a fraction of Apple’s decade-long R&D into slate computing that was first unveiled in the iPhone and most recently with the iPad. More to come with iTV. Android was a third rate Blackberry clone at the time of the iPhone’s release. It was a dull and unremarkable OS that possessed none of the innovation that made the iPhone so industry disrupting. So now Android is in danger of being sued to the ground by Apple. And it deserves it, because at the core of the last several Android versions are astonishingly blatant rip-offs of Apple’s innovation. And don’t bring up slide down notifications, that is a licensed UI technology. Android is third rate copy cat tech, with Google brilliantly duping nerds into buying their “open” BS. I have used several Android devices. It’s an unstable, buggy, malware infested fragmented mess.

          • Aldi

            Obviously, in the early times of interactive CD-ROM and Flash websites, multi-touch technology didn’t exist yet, so logically they didn’t use it. When new technology is introduced, its usage and implementation would be very natural AND inevitable. When the computer mouse was introduced, naturally people would make good use of its functionality for navigation and interaction with the GUI. So the same case with multi-touch technology. The very idea behind its innovation was that so people can make use of it. In fact, when it was first demoed (about a year before iPhone was ‘invented’), it was showing panning, zooming, rotating, and other manipulative things using multi-touch. The idea had always been there! And this multi-touch, multi-gesture ideas had been around even before the technology is invented. You can see how some sci-fi movies tried to envision its possibilities, such as the one in the movie ‘Minority Report’. The idea is nothing new.

            As for the ‘inertial scrolling and rubber banding’, they’re just effects. You can see great many effects everywhere in the interactive industry. I had seen many similar effects before iPhone, though they may be implemented quite differently. And they may not bother to patent them, too, because they’re just everywhere.

            Look, I understand if one wanted to patent something that’s ‘incredibly’ innovative. But to patent the basic ‘idea’ of a technology is just plain ridiculous.

            And I admit that Apple is amazingly creative in their implementation of technology. It shouldn’t be a surprise if many companies were trying to follow suit. So may the best man win!

  • RealBhuiya

    Apple and Apple fans alike think reinventing the smart phone entitles inventing everything about it entirely, when its logically obvious that “nothing new is under the sun.” If I had the resources, I would love to make the argument that Apple is the biggest plagiarist of them all, and probably the world has ever seen.

  • Jason Keenan

    Hey guys, c’mon. I’m sure Apple will be reasonable and understand that, although the a$$nuggets at the USPTO (who clearly have little to no grasp of this newfangled interweb contraption) granted this monumentally ill-conceived patent, that doesn’t mean that they should actually enforce it. Right? Apple is so “cool” and “clever” and “simple” and “cool” … and “Justin Long does NOT suck donkey b@lls” … and … they wouldn’t do it … right??

    • ntegrit

      What’s the matter with Justin Long?

      • LawrenceMcatee

        I wonder if Justin uses an iPhone….

  • http://twitter.com/jugglerbry Jugglerbry

    What an absolute joke !!! Why can’t these companies just get along side bu side and just get in with the competition and let the comsumer decide which is best without resorting to these patent lawsuits. Getting a bit tired if reading about samsung being sued cos tjeir pad ‘looks like’ an iPad, and google havig to pay Microsoft of all people everytime an android phone is sold, its all ridiculous and petty really. Apple, google,.Samsung and microsoft should get over themselves and just get on with their core business and make the products theyre known for and innovate and stop this pathetics lawsuit rubbish. Sorry everyone – rant over.

    • Andrew torres

      Because Google’s Android encorporates the very fundamental thing of life…thats “CHOICE”. You can pick from the most mediocre budget friendly android device to the most expensive and latest version of a device with Jelly bean. Android is just everything for everyone. Apple’s iOS is simple powerful and effective, yet take an android you have the choice to make it more powerful, make it more effective, more automated (tasker)…the possibilities are endless. the software on android is destroying the iPhone. I predicted this was gonne be a straight software war. they will go for jugular from now on with software, not hardware injunctions. Remember Steve and his ideology of giving to the people what they dont have yet and making them want it? You see googles is giving it all with android. The source code, its customization and its openess represents open no holds bar innovation.

  • zach white

    If our judicial system is stupid enough to pass this… I’m seriously at a loss for words right now

    • Oliver Petruzel

      It’s not the “judicial system”… it’s the army of patent reviewers (aka “TOTAL F’N MORONS”) who work at the always wonderful US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Their entire organization and all of their processes are completely screwed up.
      http://www.uspto.gov/patents/index.jsp

      • Superguy

        But it is ultimately the judges that determine whether those patents are valid or not. We have smart judges and no-so-smart judges in this area. Posner is the former, and Koh is the latter.

    • FreakFly

      .*deleted*

  • bmg314

    I think it is time for the U.S. Congress to get involved, as painful as that is to say.

    That, or can we send a bat signal to Anonymous? “PLEASE STOP crAPPLE. THANK YOU.”

    • Wayne Morrison

      It’s not Health Care or Abortion…Good luck getting this Congress to even glance at it.

      • mhmmd123

        That`s what everyone called freedom! That`s what you freedom stand for, the government let the people do what they please to do as long keep them mouth shut. Just find a girlfriends, go to bar and dance… I thought the foreigner government they`re dictators and have no freedom! At least they don`t do think like that. Just the best and the free country can do that, Which is the USA. if this keep going like that, The American people end buy only IPhone with Apple rules and will with the American flag Saying FIFA America… What a joke.

        • Canon User

          What?

    • http://www.facebook.com/jared.isbell Jared S. Isbell

      If there current congress where to get invovled, they would side with Apple. Let’s face it Apple would fatten their wallets not Android based devices.

    • http://www.geeksonhugs.com/ W. Anthony Tanas

      Help us Anonymous! You’re our only hope!

  • Scott Tompkins

    Hopefully this will be the impetus for a long overdue patent office reform.

  • Ocean

    Apple I’m sorry your phone infringes on my patent of the cement brick. Guess you gotta fork over your iPhones now

  • JevyJav

    Now what I want everybody to do right now is close their eyes and try to envision a bunch of Monkeys running the U.S. patent office… Can you see it?

    • FreakFly

      You can go to the patent office to see that. You don’t need to close your eyes to imagine it…

    • shadowdude777

      Hey! Don’t insult the monkeys like that! They definitely would have realized that this is not patentable.

      • Gilbert Estrada

        I think he was using ‘envision’ in the same way that John Lennon used ‘Imagine’, meaning it would be better than reality.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Max-Bin/1433389404 Max Bin

      Monkeys in all government offices is more correct

    • drosspike

      Fascinating to read how the same people who applaud Motorola, Samsung and Google being granted patents then turn around and say the patent office is being run by monkeys when it awards a major patent to Apple. Also interesting is the perception that this patent is FRAND. It is not. Among other things the patent describes the UI behavior of scroll bars fading in only during an inertial scroll event triggered by a multitouch swipe. This is technology that did not exist prior to the release of the iPhone. The Android OS at the time was essentially a Blackberry clone and featured nothing like to what is described in this Apple patent.

      • http://twitter.com/imnuts07 Mark

        You sir, are a tool. People don’t care when other companies get granted patents cause they don’t go around trying to sue the world cause something “looks similar”. Apple isn’t going to use this to promote innovation, they’re going to use it to prevent it.
        Imagine how much more boring most cars would be if Mercedes Benz did this with their patents.

        • drosspike

          Thanks for the ‘tool’ label. Very mature. As for Mercedes they do have patents and the do sue to protect them, just like Apple. Same goes for Audi and BMW. For example the breakthrough transmission technology DSG (invented by Porsche and then further developed by now sister companies VW & Audi) was patent protected and not allowed to be used by competitors for many years. This allowed VW & Audi to recoup their considerable investment through exclusivity of the technology. Same idea with this Apple patent. The UI technology described in the patent was developed by Apple internally. They have a right to protect it. Otherwise their investment would be not worthwhile if Google can just come in and copy it. It comes down to this: Competition is good, copying is bad. These are two distinct things that seem to be constantly confused by Android fans.

          • Junaid Akhlaq

            menithings, my friend, you are right that companies who invent something have the right to have exclusivity to the innovation. But the fact of the matter is that such a patent, 5 years ago, would have been reasonable, not today. The technology is already out and millions of people have their livelihoods linked to it. There are billions of devices across the globe that use this technology. Giving Apple exclusivity will have a very negative impact on the market. Instead of promoting a healthy competitive marketplace, it would serve to promote Apple’s monopoly in the smartphone and tablet genre. This is what people are protesting against.

          • http://www.facebook.com/s.cheek21 Steve Cheek

            I completely agree with you on the competition/copying, but I also have to agree with the comment below (From Junaid Akhlaq). Had this patent been issued when the first filing was made in 2007, it would have been appropriate. But with this type of technology already present in millions of devices, it seems that the awarding of such a patent could lead to action that could potentially cripple all Android-based phones/tablets. Were successful legal action taken and sales of all Android devices had to be halted until it was changed significantly enough to be completely distinct from any of the features outlined in the patent, what would the effect be on the many manufacturers whose smartphones all rely on Android?

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=520190249 Nick Kathrein

      Yes but I think the truth is the system is setup to allow everything through since its cheaper and puts the correction function as law suits which at this point has become to crazy and truthfully their should be punishments for companies filing for patents like this. We need this system fixed.

  • ORITGuy

    How absurd! How could they possibly get a patent on displaying a list or documents, photo thumbnails, or email? Do they think they invented the on-screen keyboard too?

    • bmg314

      Wait for it. I wouldn’t doubt that they have a patent application in the works for that, too. >.<

  • tizzyzz

    I agree time to play dirty we need anonymous to attack them and their f’ing app store

    • AmericanPatriot4

      Anonymous seems to only attack systems that are “somewhat” challenging to break. Apple does not fall into that category since they operate on the principal of “We don’t get viruses like Windows”. A child could break their security.

      Anyway, I would LOVE to see them knock them down several pegs!

    • Marsg

      1 million macs were attacked a couple weeks ago, and apple removed the “immune to viruses” off the list and replaced it with “built to be safe” i find it more humorous that apple consumers actually thought their Mac’s were safer then the servers at the pentagon lol

  • Twizded

    Am I wrong thinking that looks a lot like AOL Aim and that’s been around WAY before 2007.

  • No_Nickname90

    I don’t get what’s being patented. It looks lyk the Messaging OS. How can this be patented? This is not new at all. What about that previous invention stuff where if something is already in invention you can’t patent it? Well if this was patent, this means that the thought was never in the market and Apple can’t say that someone is copying them now.

    Enjoy your un-innovative patent Apple. Prove to the world that you’re a big liar.
    HMPH!!

  • NIGHTSCOUT

    WHO on earth is giving out these ridiculous patents? They should be hung upside down, until their head pops from the pressure.

  • Brent Foy

    Wow. I recommend some people actually stop and read the patent.

    It’s basically for a translucent or transparent scroll bar when displaying documents, that has an auto-timeout and reacts to touch.

    So…yes, it is completely ridiculous it has been allowed, but it is likely very far from the super nightmare patent it is being made out to be.

    Oh, and this patent wasn’t initially filed in 2007, it was filed 03/05/2012. The “as far back as 2007″ is in reference to previous, but separate, patents that date back to 2007, of which this is a continuation. ( IE: Hey, we had this idea of something to add onto the iPhone, which we patented back in 2007. We would now like to patent this new fangled thing. K, thx bai. )

    Anyways: http://www.freepatentsonline.com/8223134.html

    • slaguru

      No way, lets all have a knee jerk reaction and start talking about taking Apple down, completely agree with you Brent in at least you have read the thing.

      So far this patent shite has just lined the pockets of lawyers.

      I know the hate will come but I tend to believe that Apple are not the only ones to pull this crap. But the fanatics here seem to think that patent law is only on Apples side.

      Have a look at the history children, Apple lose more than they win, so why does it make any sense for them to sue using this patent ?

      Oh and it is just a patent, not a legal case, so you are all mouthing off when all that is happened is another tech company gets awarded another piece of paper.

      Pathetic

      • jroc74

        I agree Apple aren’t the only ones who sue. If they lose more than they win….that should tell them something…..

      • http://www.facebook.com/demiserv Damien Winning Brown

        Its not about winning or losing. Delaying a product from its launch date lowers projected sales also. They are trying to basically make people choose apple because our phones don’t get delayed and blah. Its funny too that they JUST on the last release stole stuff that was clearly used before them. They are scared because the itimes have passed with jobs….

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

      a translucent or transparent scroll bar? Android has had that since v2.2. It was one of the things i liked over 2.1. As a developer I could utilize more screen space and not have to pad extra space for a scroll bar. I say, just include it in your own designs apple. Android isn’t going to care if you use it.

  • Andrew torres

    Jesus, this is no good at all for Android, manufacturers, and anyone…..I knew these injunctions were going to go the software route, this patent is going to solidify it.

  • bob

    Android needs to buy RIM immediately.

  • Joshua Saunders

    This has got to end. I patented your life. Please stop breathing.

  • DroidDoesnt_2

    “We have filed for over 200 patents for all of the inventions in the iPhone; AND WE INTEND TO PROTECT THEM.”~~~Steve Jobs, January 9, 2007

    You iPhony peddlers were warned….

    • Marsg

      And you are the dumbest person ever, justifying everything that apple does like they somehow care for your consumer interest. Their just hustling you kid and now they can ban any product that is in direct competition to them and make you pay even more for an inferior product.

      • DroidDoesnt_2

        (Yawn) Whatever makes u sleep at night dude. They should have stuck to their plan to make pretend Blackberrys instead of making pretend iPhones….the chickens are coming home to roost :-)

        • Marsg

          Pretend iPhones? im sorry i completely overlooked the fact that for the past 3 years apple has done nothing but copy Android: Voice turn by turn navigation, speech to text and text to speech, notification system, cloud updates/ cloud app/media computing, universal search(android voice actions), weather/stock widget, camera at unlock screen, 3D maps, traffic updates, sport updates, browser bookmark sync, saving web pages for offline reading, sms quick responses, etc.. you’re defending a thief we are defending the innovation that was stolen

          • Aldi

            So Google can actually sue Apple for those then… Or can they??

        • Marsg

          Not to mention that you guys even risk completely destroying your phone by jail-breaking it just to get the same features us Android users get right out of the box and then turn around to slander the operating system you mimes are trying to mimick >.> just a bunch of hypocrites.

  • MikeCiggy

    What in the hell is this even patenting? I see threaded text messages which I had on my LG phone pre-iphone days.

    Do these patents come with more explanation?

  • Luxferro

    I think Google and every other company that isn’t Apple should file a lawsuit against the US Patent and Trademark Office. It’s time to make some changes in the patent system!

    How do you grant patents for functions that are already used by everyone? Also, It’s time to remove the label of ‘phone’ or ‘mobile device’ from software patents. They are nothing but small computers, and there is no reason to issue patents for functions that have existed on personal computers for ages, just because someone calls their version a ‘mobile phone’ patent.

  • http://profiles.google.com/luke.hutch Luke Hutchison

    Almost certainly all invalidated by prior art (e.g. on Maemo, but extending far before that existed too…)

  • oneillperson

    Everyone look to the right side of the browser on your PC right now. See that scroll bar that makes it quicker to move up and down on the page? Yeah? Apple invented it. CLEARLY.

  • d1m1m1

    Who ever gave the final decision to grant this patent must live under a rock.

    • Ken Bosse

      Or is a isheep

  • http://completecomputerco.net Matt

    Well, by the time Cupertino is done being buried in countersuits, they’ll want to make a buttonless phone. Oh wait …have fun making art of that wasted space.

    Aside from prior precedent nullifying this, sheer market share of android alone would make this look worse than oracle v google in court.

  • Joshua Powers

    How the #$&! is Apple getting these obvious/broad patents with clear prior use? Displaying documents and list on a mobile device, I’m pretty sure every Palm/pocket pc pda back in the day could do that. Who is Apple bribing in the US patent office?

  • mirage03

    i think google is afraid.. afraid that apple would stop using google search engine, or anything google on apple products.. it would be a big loss for google.. so google is the ” oh it’s cool , go ahead” type of company.. lenient..

    • Kieron Quinn

      But what would Crapple use if they had no google? They bought new maps (millions of dollars there), and they are crap compared to google maps 3d. They’re stuck with google, whatever happens

  • Tarik Husejinovic

    I wonder if anyone has a patent on making phone calls from a cellular phone. hmm…

    • Mike Minor

      They do…

  • androidica

    This patent will be invalidated eventually, its silly. Who just are these guys that work at the USPTO. Apple will likely use it ASAP but once courts rule it as too broad its becomes useless and waits till it expires. The major Android OEMs and Google needs to do it come together and sue the USPTO for granting some of these silly patents to wake them up.

  • master94

    There is no one left at the patent office who has a brain anymore, that or District Judge Lucy H. Koh was involved somehow.

  • Aldi

    The whole patent system is a joke! Next time I’ll probably patent eating with your mouth!

    • gabrielsamfira

      Now thats an innovation you should have kept quiet about. Now everyone is going to steal your idea! :(. Ohh well, good thing you will be able to sue them!

  • Jeffrey Evans

    I think I’ve reached the point where A: nothing surprises me anymore, and B: this doesn’t phase me anymore because in the end, all Apple has ever done with their crap patents is delay products for a short period time. The public has spoken, Android is what people want and can’t be stopped as long at that continues.

    Eventually Google will have to get involved. When that happens, Oracle will be grateful they got off so lucky when compared to what Apple has coming.

  • Chris Sullins

    This is why our CORRUPT patent system needs to be revised. This patent would have not been granted overseas. Apple is going to kill themselves in the states with all this crazy shit. They already losing steam in Russia and other international countries.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Neil-Steiner/100002608896454 Neil Steiner

    All apple is doing is hindering human growth and development so that they can control the way we live. Google doesn’t go out and sue everyone that uses their patents, why? Because they believe in innovation and shared knowledge that doesn’t come at the cost of having to fire half your work force just to stay in business. Grow up apple, your the stingy kid on the playground that none of the other kids want to play with.

  • Tomi Golob

    people should learn to read first ,before making this a “doomsday patent” kind of thing… Seriously,Phandroid … dont do this :) Im all for boycotting apple ( #boycottapple !!),but this was like a sensationalistic way of reporting …

    p.s.: my point is less drama, more objective reporting

    • Mike Minor

      Agreed! As of late the tech. media has become notorious for spraying NO2 at what amounts to a lit match stick!

  • jawman

    2012 really must be the end of the world.

  • DavidVarghese

    Google is acting like the sleeping giant right now… I know they have the power to cripple Apple, but yet they dont… Wake up Google!

    • Mike Minor

      That is not their style… Also remember Google currently makes ad money via apple products too. Best not to make a complete enemy of them……yet. I believe that once, there is no money to be made though the apple universe, is when you will see the sleeping Giant wake… In the mean time Google is slowly killing apple with smiles while taking market share away…

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002079171693 Geoffrey Wagner

    If this keeps up, Apple may be looking at anti-trust.

  • http://www.facebook.com/abhilash.raj Abhilash Raj

    Wait. Are all these patents applicable worldwide ? If not, then all this patent trolling should just result in other players reducing their product range in the US and ramping up their share in other markets – Asia mainly. And if these Asian countries are expected to be “economic powerhouses” soon, then apples just unwittingly helping android manufacturers solidify their base in markets with massive future potential

  • Magnus100

    This patent will be duly invalidated based on prior art.

  • http://www.facebook.com/eimiben Ben Jansen

    Isn’t it about time someone put an end to this patentwar? It’s getting to be ridiculous. If SnApple continues on this path, maybe someone can bite off a huge chunk? I refuse to use any fruit-based products!

  • http://twitter.com/iBarSteward chris woodhead

    I bet you americans wish your courts/patents office/whatever had a bit of sense like ours here in the UK.
    Near enough every case that apple brings to court they end up losing. Our judges seem to have a bit of common sense.

    • Mike Minor

      Send them over here or we will send apple there!

  • bobgosh

    ok, is there anything else left for Apple to claim patent on? A rectangular device, with a black front, touchscreen, touch keyboard, a smartphone OS… So this is how our world of technology ends, with the 1 company who refuses to move forward competes by making sure noone else can advance forward. How far have cell phones come in 10 years? Well, here you go, Apple is going to see that for the next 10 years your phone options will be 1 device that will not change and Zack Morris’ phone… Way to keep up fair competition!

  • http://AfterCredits.com Chris R.

    This patent stuff is just getting out of hand. I think I’ll patent a way to display text and/images on a digital screen. If I can patent every possible way to layout text and images, then I could rule the Internet!!!

  • gmplr831

    Apples new slogan: Why innovate when you can litigate?

  • jmiller808

    Bad news for android? umm prior art anyone? here ill do the legwork for you…windows mobile 5 (released in 2005, 2 years before the application date of these patents) http://img.brothersoft.com/screenshots/softimage/n/newsland_for_windows_mobile_5.0_smartpho-130735-1.jpeg looks oddly familiar doesn’t it?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Max-Bin/1433389404 Max Bin

    I will keep my droid thank you

  • Jose Rodriguez

    How the hell is this not FRAND?

  • http://www.facebook.com/james.tratz James Tratz

    This won’t kill off iPhone copycats. They can pay a $10 royalty per device.
    No problemo!

  • chrisbox29

    The author didn’t do his homework. Its not for the interface, its for the scrollbar. Dumbass misleading article! Search the “patent 8223134″ for yourselves and read it. This guy should be fired.

  • SnookNexus1

    Wait until we get our patent for the Notification Bar… Apple is so screwed

    • Mike Minor

      By any chance are you employed with Google?

  • Lactose_the_Intolerant

    Just curious how car companies handle this — I mean, a car is a car, right? engine, steering wheel, doors, wheels… how do they not dissolved into patent wars? They might defend their names/trademarks but functionally, they all look and act the same.

    • Mike Minor

      Because they license them! apple does not want to do this in a futile effort to preserve what they incorrectly perceive to be their market, that only they created…

      If you can’t beat ‘um at least slow them down as much as you can….

  • http://www.geeksonhugs.com/ W. Anthony Tanas

    Apple is a clear and present danger to the world economy. They need to be shut down and patents need to be abolished, or at least greatly restricted in the technology sector to prevent the insanity of these kinds of patents. This is a total abuse of all decency.

  • Thomas

    Seriously, the moderator here allows name calling and sht slinging but deletes ration comments and arguments that oppose the bias here?

  • Thomas

    Fuck you moderator hater.

  • Thomas

    Fuck you moderator hater

  • Thomas

    Fuck you

  • Thomas

    Fuck you all

  • Thomas

    Liars and haters all

  • Thomas

    Fuck you all for erasing my legitimate comments

  • Thomas

    Fuck you

  • http://twitter.com/fartil3 Michael Bing

    i laugh of fandroids crying out loud like small babies, just because Apple is granted a patent. Android oem´s have been stealing right and left…. it´s about time they pay up.

  • Dave4321

    Just because some overworked patent clerk granted a patent doesn’t mean it is remotely close to being upheld as valid. Apple could probably get a patent for using metal and glass in a portable device if it tried. All of these drawings can be found in prior art from the mid 90′s Palm devices. Kevin, how about getting a patent attorney to comment?

    • drosspike

      Actually it can an most certainly will.

  • drosspike

    I read over the patent and It’s pretty comprehensive. I’m no patent lawyer but most of what’s described did not exist in this form before. Android at the time looked little like what is described in this patent. Same goes for Windows Phone and Blackberry. Actually Android at the time was far more similar to a Blackberry. It will be interesting to see if Android’s migration from a blackberry clone to being an iPhone clone will stand the test of law.

  • patapongirl

    Our patent system is seriously f-ed up.

    • drosspike

      I agree. However where it’s f-ed up is in reference to FRAND patents. For example companies like Motorola who bought standards-essential patents (like radio protocols) try to sue other companies from using them instead of licensing. This is egregiously uncompetitive because a FRAND patent is necessary to make any phone regardless of design. It should be law that these patents must be licensed at a fair market price. They currently are not. And that is f-ed up. This specific Apple patent, if you read it, protects what is a series of iPhone UI behaviors that are unique to the Apple OS and did not exist prior to the iPhone. They are original inventions. Period. These UI behaviors are non-essential to make a phone, and therefore competitors like Google are free to innovate their own way, instead of copying what Apple rightly created and now lawfully owns.

      • Mike Minor

        Wow… do you really believe the non-sense that you spew here?

        #DON’T FEED THE TROLLS

  • http://www.facebook.com/thunter01 Tom Hunter

    Lets be real. The scope of the patent is determined by the claims — Not some pictures in the application. In this patent, the claims are directed to a particular method of displaying and controlling vertical scrolling in a document. Not all-encompassing, Not particular hard to design non-infringing alternatives.

  • http://twitter.com/SParKlngCyaNide SparklingCyanide

    Oh give me an Effing BREAK!? who are these Imbeciles handing such vague
    and general patents out to monster companies who only use them to bully
    more innovative competitors. this is all a bunch of Nonesense, we must
    live in fantasy land or something….

  • dh labs

    patent examiners get paid peanuts. do you really expect someone capable of understanding technical patents is willing to work for this http://goo.gl/xACMg ???

  • http://twitter.com/kyrenian Monotom

    Where were these companies before Apple ? Why did they wait for Apple ? Why didn’t they continue to produce phones like Blackberry ? lol There is no difference between hardware and software patents. you can’t use without giving loyalty. http://www.techspot.com/news/48357-googles-2006-phone-prototype-looked-like-a-blackberry.html This was Google’s plan for phone ! What changed ?!?! lol

  • http://twitter.com/Bundaaloo Viper

    oh boy if there is one good news for android and its partners its followed by a big one against them !!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/davo1976 Dave Phillips

    I remember when patents were innovative
    and original. All these guys doing are
    destroying the system. Hope someone wakes
    up soon.

  • Aldi

    Sure Apple is a real game changer.. Sure Apple has the greatest ideas.. Sure Apple has the greatest products… But to have patented on something as simple as ‘slide-to-unlock’ was plain ridiculous… And now this? #onlymypointofview

  • http://twitter.com/bradenmikaelcom bradenmikael.com

    I had a Sharp PDA device that had an onscreen keyboard like the above. It was made in 1998-1999. I wonder if Apple patented that, too? Apple can go straight to hell. Who is the IDIOT at the U.S. Patent Office who approved this? And how much is Apple paying them, including that moron, Judge Lucy Koh?

  • MonkeyWork

    Leave Apple alone, they’re right to claim anything they want to. I want:

    1. Bans on anything ‘smartphone’ related except for Apple.
    2. Fix this ‘all cars can have wheels’ problem.
    3. Take all door off houses, except for 1 manufacturer.
    4. Someone rightly owns all the world’s factories, because of the patent on, ‘a method of using something to create a thing,’ right?

    …..