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MacRumors
Jun 22, 2011, 09:51 AM
http://cdn.macrumors.com/im/macrumorsthreadlogo.gif (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/06/22/apple-wins-wide-ranging-patent-on-iphone-user-interface/)


As briefly noted (http://www.patentlyapple.com/patently-apple/2011/06/apple-wins-patents-for-their-original-iphone-interface-a-microdvi-connector-the-imacs-edge-to-edge-glass-cover-front-row.html) by Patently Apple yesterday, Apple has finally been awarded a key patent related to the iOS user interface as implemented on the original iPhone. Originally filed in December 2007, the patent application incorporated several previous provisional patent applications dating back to January 2007 when Apple first unveiled the iPhone six months ahead of its launch.

http://cdn.macrumors.com/article-new/2011/06/apple_multitouch_display_translate_patent.jpg


While the newly-granted patent does not reach the scale of "The iPhone Patent" (http://www.macrumors.com/2009/01/26/apple-awarded-iphone-and-multi-touch-patent/), a 358-page monster patent granted in January 2009 and carrying Steve Jobs' name as an inventor, it does specifically address some basic multi-touch functionality including providing users with the ability to pan around the screen while touching the screen with some number of fingers but panning around a specific frame within the displayed content using a different number of fingers. In essence, the patent describes the basic concept of navigating around webpages with a one-finger touch while also being able to to use a two-finger touch to independently scroll within an embedded frame.

PC Magazine takes a look (http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2387401,00.asp) at the implications of the granted patent, noting that the covered material is broad enough to pose potential problems for other smartphone manufacturers employing capacitive multitouch interfaces on their devices.It gets quite a bit more technical in its full form, but there's one thing patent experts consulted by PCMag agree on -- Apple has been awarded an incredibly broad patent that could prove to be hugely problematic for other makers of capacitive touch-screen smartphones.

Apple's patent essentially gives it ownership of the capacitive multitouch interface the company pioneered with its iPhone, said one source who has been involved in intellectual property litigation on similar matters.Apple's patent is also written broadly enough to apply to non-smartphone devices such as tablets and iPod touch-like media players, giving Apple significant clout in protecting its technology.

Apple has already filed infringement lawsuits against a number of its competitors in the smartphone industry including HTC and Samsung, making good on promises (http://www.macrumors.com/2009/01/22/tim-cook-apple-will-aggressively-protect-iphone-intellectual-property/) that the company would aggressively defend its intellectual property behind the iPhone.

Article Link: Apple Wins Broad Patent on iPhone Multi-Touch User Interface (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/06/22/apple-wins-wide-ranging-patent-on-iphone-user-interface/)



jamesryanbell
Jun 22, 2011, 09:54 AM
Everyone give up. Apple won. Figure out something innovative on your own.

(Sorry...had to FanBoi the crap out of that one)

*LTD*
Jun 22, 2011, 09:55 AM
I wonder who the new infringers are.

Samsung, we know about. HTC perhaps?

Apple *did* patent the hell out of it, guys.

cmaier
Jun 22, 2011, 09:55 AM
Patent number? Need to see the claims.

Gen
Jun 22, 2011, 09:58 AM
Steve Jobs invented the iPhone? :confused: srsly...

NebulaClash
Jun 22, 2011, 09:59 AM
This makes sense. Apple may not have invented touch screens, but their specific mult-touch gestures seemed to be uniquely Apple when the iPhone first came out. Now, of course, people copied them and they are in use all over the place, but back in 2007 . . . not so much.

*LTD*
Jun 22, 2011, 09:59 AM
Patent number? Need to see the claims.

http://www.patentlyapple.com/patently-apple/2011/06/apple-wins-patents-for-their-original-iphone-interface-a-microdvi-connector-the-imacs-edge-to-edge-glass-cover-front-row.html

dethmaShine
Jun 22, 2011, 09:59 AM
Steve Jobs invented the iPhone? :confused: srsly...

Yes he did.

:rolleyes:

SuperMatt
Jun 22, 2011, 10:00 AM
Does patent law lend itself to patent trolls more than to companies that actually ship products? It sure seems to. An idiotic patent like Lodsys files all these lawsuits. However, when Apple sues Samsung for obviously ripping them off, some judge says "can't we just all get along?" Justice is FAR from blind in this country. Sorry.

RawBert
Jun 22, 2011, 10:02 AM
:apple:=Winning

KPOM
Jun 22, 2011, 10:03 AM
Patent number? Need to see the claims.

7,966,578


http://patft1.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO1&Sect2=HITOFF&d=PALL&p=1&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsrchnum.htm&r=1&f=G&l=50&s1=7,966,578.PN.&OS=PN/7,966,578&RS=PN/7,966,578

*LTD*
Jun 22, 2011, 10:03 AM
Does patent law lend itself to patent trolls more than to companies that actually ship products? It sure seems to. An idiotic patent like Lodsys files all these lawsuits. However, when Apple sues Samsung for obviously ripping them off, some judge says "can't we just all get along?" Justice is FAR from blind in this country. Sorry.

The judge said that because if Apple were to follow through with their case, we'd see around half (if not more) of Samsung's smartphone business shut down. That would be quite a blow.

HelveticaNeue
Jun 22, 2011, 10:04 AM
Somewhere in Cupertino, Steve Jobs is smiling.

Otto J
Jun 22, 2011, 10:06 AM
The judge said that because if Apple were to follow through with their case, we'd see around half (if not more) of Samsung's smartphone business shut down. That would be quite a blow.


Having companies stop inventing things because their patents aren't worth anything IRL and anyone can copy it as long as they're big enough, would be quite a blow too.

*LTD*
Jun 22, 2011, 10:06 AM
Somewhere in Cupertino, Steve Jobs is smiling.

Smartest company in tech. Easily.

cmaier
Jun 22, 2011, 10:06 AM
7,966,578


http://patft1.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO1&Sect2=HITOFF&d=PALL&p=1&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsrchnum.htm&r=1&f=G&l=50&s1=7,966,578.PN.&OS=PN/7,966,578&RS=PN/7,966,578

Thanks.

Patent doesn't cover what everyone says. It covers only the use of one finger to move a web page while using two fingers to scroll a frame. (or m fingers and n fingers).

To infringe, you need to do both.

GFLPraxis
Jun 22, 2011, 10:06 AM
Disclaimer: I despise our broken patent system and realize this will unfortunately likely be used to strongarm competitors.

That said, I really wonder what people like the folks at Samsung were thinking. Steve Jobs got on stage and ranted about how hard they'd patented it during the introduction presentation. This was Jobs' baby. I'm not surprised that he was willing to press the big red lawsuit button in the patent arms race, and they really are going to get what was coming to them.

However, sued competitors = less innovation all around. Hopefully this isn't broad enough to hurt the actually interesting competitors (especially WebOS/Windows Phone 7) and only hits designs like Samsung's.

colmaclean
Jun 22, 2011, 10:07 AM
Following the recent Nokia agreement, will Apple forbid other phone makers from using their patents or allow them to for a tasty licence fee?

kRobbin
Jun 22, 2011, 10:07 AM
Interesting, trying to figure that one out. Could be good for photography apps when dealing with large photos. Whatever it is, sure it will be great!

rjtyork
Jun 22, 2011, 10:08 AM
Good. Now maybe Apple can shut down these stupid "we're better than the iPhone because we're droid" idiots. I've used 6 different iPhone killers for a month each at a time and not even one of them came close. Each month of a different phone was hell, too. I'm sick to DEATH of people telling me what they can do with their droid when my iPhone can also do it, and do it better and for free (TETHERING) when it's jailbroken.

"Well, yeah. But then you have to jailbreak it..."

Well... Jailbreaking takes 20 minutes. A fragmented OS lasts forever.

The only people I'm really jealous of are people using their smartphones on T Mobile. I REALLY want my iPhone on the best service possible. The best phone in the world can not be the phone it could be on the worlds worst carrier.

Verizon isn't much better than ATT. But then again I'm thinking back to the experience I had in '06 when I had to cancel my dad's Verizon plan. Took 3 phone calls, 2 hours, 28 /facepalms and a sore throat from screaming at them so much to just cancel my service. Oh, and we STILL got bills for $45/month for 6 months after until we filed for Arbitration with them, along with the BBB. I would NEVER go back to Verizon after that. It would take something really awesome to make me want to switch to them.

I went off topic. Good job, Apple! Shut down as many droids as you can! Make them come up with something else!

GFLPraxis
Jun 22, 2011, 10:08 AM
The judge said that because if Apple were to follow through with their case, we'd see around half (if not more) of Samsung's smartphone business shut down. That would be quite a blow.

Source?

nostaws
Jun 22, 2011, 10:08 AM
I think a lot of these awarded patents are way too broad and stifle creativity. Whether it is Lodys or Apple, some of these patents are just a logical progression of ideas.

miografico
Jun 22, 2011, 10:09 AM
You all do realize they have no choice, but to license out this technology and the result of lawsuits will amount to nothing more than private licensing deals? They would eventually be considered a monopoly and broken up if they chose not to and to just broadly put the rest of the tablet/touch industry out of business.

Don't kid yourself if you think this is going to put Samsung et. al out of business.

*LTD*
Jun 22, 2011, 10:09 AM
Source?

My crystal ball. It's *very* effective.

I could make you one, if you like. PM me for a price list.

cmaier
Jun 22, 2011, 10:10 AM
I think a lot of these awarded patents are way too broad and stifle creativity. Whether it is Lodys or Apple, some of these patents are just a logical progression of ideas.

Patent is very narrow. Article is wrong.

Dorje Sylas
Jun 22, 2011, 10:11 AM
Ouch, when Apple has a chance to slam on the innovation breaks everyone trying to draft/tailgate Apple is going in trouble. Especially since unlike in the early days Apple is no longer in tissue thin situation, more like a tank.

Is there any prior art for these kinds of interfaces?

Like the Samsung case this could really hurt the smartphone market. Hurt it too much and Apple starts coming out looking like a monopoly.... Which is unfortunate because it does seem no one else can come up with good ideas, for multi-touch interfaces anyways.

Les Kern
Jun 22, 2011, 10:12 AM
Predict it will be like this: Either a company invents a whole new method or they pay Apple. Even in these monopoly-loving days of corporatist rule, Apple will not be allowed to shut anyone down. Won't happen.

*LTD*
Jun 22, 2011, 10:12 AM
Thanks.

Patent doesn't cover what everyone says. It covers only the use of one finger to move a web page while using two fingers to scroll a frame. (or m fingers and n fingers).

To infringe, you need to do both.

I'm glad someone read through it. :)

Thanks for clarifying.

skunk
Jun 22, 2011, 10:13 AM
Interesting, trying to figure that one out. Could be good for photography apps when dealing with large photos. Whatever it is, sure it will be great!Surely you jest?

reactions
Jun 22, 2011, 10:13 AM
Everyone give up. Apple won. Figure out something innovative on your own.

(Sorry...had to FanBoi the crap out of that one)

If everyone gave up we still wouldn't have a revamped notification system for ios5

Apple isn't stupid - they have white chalkboard with what features theyll release for each model no doubt milking consumers for every penny.

That said - bring it On - competition

dethmaShine
Jun 22, 2011, 10:13 AM
My crystal ball. It's *very* effective.

I could make you one, if you like. PM me for a price list.

Can't believe people come into serious discussions with such comments.

Not even funny.

cmaier
Jun 22, 2011, 10:16 AM
I'm glad someone read through it. :)

Thanks for clarifying.

Question is whether the competition does this. Simple (but somewhat sucky in practice) work-around would be press-and-hold the frame and then drag, for example.

Anyway, Arn, read the claims before you proclaim a patent broad!

benthewraith
Jun 22, 2011, 10:20 AM
Apple sues Android handset alliance members for multitouch.

Google sues Apple for notifications.

Millions of dollars flow between companies, lawyers make money, nothing of consequence happens to consumers.

ChrisTX
Jun 22, 2011, 10:22 AM
I think a lot of these awarded patents are way too broad and stifle creativity. Whether it is Lodys or Apple, some of these patents are just a logical progression of ideas.

They're only "way too broad" because now EVERYONE is copying, and using for free Apples ideas on multitouch. People tend to forget that before the first iPhone in 2007 no one was pinching to zoom, using double tap, slide to unlock, etc. It's only broad when you forget where all of this came from.

viscanti
Jun 22, 2011, 10:22 AM
Thanks.

Patent doesn't cover what everyone says. It covers only the use of one finger to move a web page while using two fingers to scroll a frame. (or m fingers and n fingers).

To infringe, you need to do both.

You read the whole 300+ page patent in 15 min? Oh, you didn't even read the linked summary and you have no idea what you're talking about? It's a patent for a "n" finger interface. That means that anyone who uses multi finger gestures to change what's displayed is infringing. It's the very definition of a broad patent.

Not infringing = 1 finger controls everything.
Infringing = Anything that utilizes a different # of fingers to do different things; for scrolling, zooming, etc.

kdarling
Jun 22, 2011, 10:25 AM
This makes sense. Apple may not have invented touch screens, but their specific mult-touch gestures seemed to be uniquely Apple when the iPhone first came out.

Hardly. The only multi-touch gesture specific to Apple that I can think of, is their three-finger handicapped zoom mode switcher.

Now, of course, people copied them and they are in use all over the place, but back in 2007 . . . not so much.

The history of touch did not begin in 2007 :)

To those of us developing on touchscreens for decades before Apple, they brought nothing unusual to the table. (I myself first developed on capacitive screens starting in 1992. If you went to Foxwoods and other casinos back then, you might've used my work.)

This patent needs to be struck down as obvious to anyone practiced in the art. Using multiple fingers is a time-honored way of expressing alternative actions on a multi-touch screen, as seen by pinch gestures back in the early '90s, and by the use of more than one finger to denote ctrl-Click or context actions.

(This patent reminds me of the one Apple's trying to get for imitating knob rotations with two fingers, another gesture that's been done for years.)

Tones2
Jun 22, 2011, 10:25 AM
Apple sues Android handset alliance members for multitouch.

Google sues Apple for notifications.

Millions of dollars flow between companies, lawyers make money, nothing of consequence happens to consumers.

...except higher prices.

Tony

Sabenth
Jun 22, 2011, 10:27 AM
well its taken all this time too get the patent suppose a bit more time more law suites will be in the courts behind closed doors for fear of spys snooping on company ideas and not just apple but all company's that use touch for there products

cmaier
Jun 22, 2011, 10:27 AM
You read the whole 300+ page patent in 15 min? Oh, you didn't even read the linked summary and you have no idea what you're talking about? It's a patent for a "n" finger interface. That means that anyone who uses multi finger gestures to change what's displayed is infringing. It's the very definition of a broad patent.

Not infringing = 1 finger controls everything.
Infringing = Anything that utilizes a different # of fingers to do different things; for scrolling, zooming, etc.

Wrong. Read the claims. Only the claims define the scope of infringement.

whooleytoo
Jun 22, 2011, 10:28 AM
Patent is very narrow. Article is wrong.

I really hope you're right. Broad patents = BAD.

I've no problem with 'patent trolls' who come up with a specific innovation, but don't have the means to implement it in a shipping product. I've a huge problem with broad/vague patents used either to stifle competition, or to impose a 'tax' upon them.

It seems this patent isn't as broad as the article suggests, I hope that's so.

kdarling
Jun 22, 2011, 10:29 AM
You read the whole 300+ page patent in 15 min? Oh, you didn't even read the linked summary and you have no idea what you're talking about? It's a patent for a "n" finger interface. That means that anyone who uses multi finger gestures to change what's displayed is infringing. It's the very definition of a broad patent.

1) You only have to read and understand the claims.

2) Cmaier works for a patent firm.

3) I also read the patent and it is as he says: it's about scrolling a frame within a larger window, by using a different number of fingers.

As I noted above, that's a patent that could cause trouble, but it also needs to be struck down as obvious. I wouldn't be surprised if Microsoft showed up with some prior art from their Surface project.

Azathoth
Jun 22, 2011, 10:30 AM
Good. Now maybe Apple can shut down these stupid "we're better than the iPhone because we're droid" idiots. I've used 6 different iPhone killers for a month each at a time and not even one of them came close. Each month of a different phone was hell, too. I'm sick to DEATH of people telling me what they can do with their droid when my iPhone can also do it, and do it better and for free (TETHERING) when it's jailbroken.

"Well, yeah. But then you have to jailbreak it..."

Well... Jailbreaking takes 20 minutes. A fragmented OS lasts forever.

The only people I'm really jealous of are people using their smartphones on T Mobile. I REALLY want my iPhone on the best service possible. The best phone in the world can not be the phone it could be on the worlds worst carrier.

Verizon isn't much better than ATT. But then again I'm thinking back to the experience I had in '06 when I had to cancel my dad's Verizon plan. Took 3 phone calls, 2 hours, 28 /facepalms and a sore throat from screaming at them so much to just cancel my service. Oh, and we STILL got bills for $45/month for 6 months after until we filed for Arbitration with them, along with the BBB. I would NEVER go back to Verizon after that. It would take something really awesome to make me want to switch to them.

I went off topic. Good job, Apple! Shut down as many droids as you can! Make them come up with something else!

Haha, where to even start with this one...


As to the patent - to me it seemed the claims were based on (web) pages - so this could impact browser interaction. It also reminded me how much I hate reading patents. I mean seriously, can't patent lawyers join some kind of Clear Language campaign? They make journal papers look like a Berstein Bears book.

Tones2
Jun 22, 2011, 10:30 AM
You read the whole 300+ page patent in 15 min? Oh, you didn't even read the linked summary and you have no idea what you're talking about? It's a patent for a "n" finger interface. That means that anyone who uses multi finger gestures to change what's displayed is infringing. It's the very definition of a broad patent.

Not infringing = 1 finger controls everything.
Infringing = Anything that utilizes a different # of fingers to do different things; for scrolling, zooming, etc.

Of course, Apple copied the idea of having any type of touchscreen smartphone in the first place. Who has the patent on THAT? I really wish that patent law would stop companies from patenting ideas that are self evident or this generic.

And I STILL can't understand why you are all so HAPPY that Apple wins on a patent - it just means less competition which means less innovation and higher prices. YEA!! :rolleyes:

Tony

ChrisTX
Jun 22, 2011, 10:31 AM
Predict it will be like this: Either a company invents a whole new method or they pay Apple. Even in these monopoly-loving days of corporatist rule, Apple will not be allowed to shut anyone down. Won't happen.

Nokia tried implementing, a swirl to zoom gesture on the N900 in Maemo 5, but to be honest it looked really silly in practice.

darbus69
Jun 22, 2011, 10:31 AM
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8J2 Safari/6533.18.5)

Everyone give up. Apple won. Figure out something innovative on your own.

(Sorry...had to FanBoi the crap out of that one)

If everyone gave up we still wouldn't have a revamped notification system for ios5

Apple isn't stupid - they have white chalkboard with what features theyll release for each model no doubt milking consumers for every penny.

That said - bring it On - competition

talk like that sounds like envious rant rather that direct knowledge of Apples policies. Is it possible, all of you doubters, that Apple integrates new features ONLY when done in such a way to be smooth and seamless (sound familiar?) After listening and seeing people rant about all the problems with other smartphones how can you accuse Apple of "milking" and holding back???

MH01
Jun 22, 2011, 10:40 AM
My crystal ball. It's *very* effective.

I could make you one, if you like. PM me for a price list.

How about you lay off the Apple Koolaid for a while, its making you see stuff....that frankly is not real...

johncarync
Jun 22, 2011, 10:41 AM
http://www.subarusvx.com/licence-to-kill1.jpg

0815
Jun 22, 2011, 10:41 AM
I hope they use this patent mainly as 'defensive' weapon when targeted by others for counter suits and not to put a hold on other companies that innovate around similar ideas.

In the company I work for we also have plenty of patents - but not to start law suits against other companies, but to protect ourself from law suits from other companies doing similar stuff.

ShiftyPig
Jun 22, 2011, 10:41 AM
Does MR know what the definition of broad is? Because this isn't broad.

The quality of writing here has taken a dramatic turn for the worse in the last month or so.

Lone Deranger
Jun 22, 2011, 10:46 AM
However, sued competitors = less innovation all around.

Really? I think it's just the opposite. In this case, rather than looking at an iPhone and copying that, the competitors will now have to think for themselves for a change.
The way Apple decided to do the iPhone, it's GUI, the user experience, the Appstore, etc. is not the only way to do a Mobile phone. However, looking at the majority of the competition's product line you'd be forgiven if you'd thought otherwise.
I'd rather see Samsung, HTC, Nokia, etc, come up with their own solution to mobile communication. If they can, and are prepared to invest in such a project for the long haul, just like Apple did (remember, Apple worked for years in secret before they felt they got it right), we might actually see some true innovation.

Diode
Jun 22, 2011, 10:46 AM
I really hope you're right. Broad patents = BAD.

I've no problem with 'patent trolls' who come up with a specific innovation, but don't have the means to implement it in a shipping product. I've a huge problem with broad/vague patents used either to stifle competition, or to impose a 'tax' upon them.

It seems this patent isn't as broad as the article suggests, I hope that's so.

Exactly - people whine when other company's do it to Apple but cheer when Apple does it to others.

Let innovation keep people buying your products, not patents that stifle competition.

toddybody
Jun 22, 2011, 10:48 AM
Though I dont know the specifics of what's covered under the patent...it does seem rather broad for a touch UI.
I just really hope this wont affect viable competition. If they loose, so do I as an Apple customer (less competition to keep Apple proactive and innovative).

Xavier
Jun 22, 2011, 10:48 AM
Following the recent Nokia agreement, will Apple forbid other phone makers from using their patents or allow them to for a tasty licence fee?

Intersting idea, but unlikely I think. Apple is not one to "sell their secrets." They will hold on to them forever.

Diode
Jun 22, 2011, 10:49 AM
Really? I think it's just the opposite. In this case, rather than looking at an iPhone and copying that, the competitors will now have to think for themselves for a change.

Kind of like how Apple copied Androids notifications (or various other App / jailbreak developers ideas). As big of a fan of Apple as I am, saying they don't borrow ideas from others is simply naive.

Stok3
Jun 22, 2011, 10:49 AM
Does MR know what the definition of broad is? Because this isn't broad.

The quality of writing here has taken a dramatic turn for the worse in the last month or so.

They simply referenced PC Magazine. And yes the patent is fairly broad, it covers more than scrolling a frame inside a window. Read the article.

kdarling
Jun 22, 2011, 10:51 AM
Does MR know what the definition of broad is? Because this isn't broad.

It's not MR's fault... they're just repeating news on the web.

Reminds me of the big hullabaloo back when Apple got the patent on scrolling in a fixed direction. Every so-called tech blog declared that Apple had a "patent on multi-touch". Of course, they never retracted their mistake.

Hint: here's how to tell that a site is faking it. They always say, "the details are too technical for most people, so we'll just say for now that..." What that means is, it's too technical for them to understand and explain to others :)

cmaier
Jun 22, 2011, 10:52 AM
They simply referenced PC Magazine. And yes the patent is fairly broad, it covers more than scrolling a frame inside a window. Read the article.

Article is wrong. Read the patent claims.

Article mistakenly treats the patent text as defining what the patent covers. It does not work like that. Only the claims define infringement.

Stok3
Jun 22, 2011, 10:53 AM
Kind of like how Apple copied Androids notifications (or various other App / jailbreak developers ideas). As big of a fan of Apple as I am, saying they don't borrow ideas from others is simply naive.

just like Android copies Expose from Mac, not to mention the multitouch interface in general.

Again this goes back to why software patents should not be allowed, by any company.

ssk2
Jun 22, 2011, 10:53 AM
MR writing has really nose-dived recently.

This article shows both: a complete misunderstanding of IP laws AND what the consequences of the patent actually are.

Too many fanboys have read the first post, come to incorrect conclusions and lit the candles around their alter to Jobs. It will be interesting to see how robustly over companies challenge the patent as it doesn't seem to do what the OP claims.

Tiger8
Jun 22, 2011, 10:54 AM
You all do realize they have no choice, but to license out this technology and the result of lawsuits will amount to nothing more than private licensing deals? They would eventually be considered a monopoly and broken up if they chose not to and to just broadly put the rest of the tablet/touch industry out of business.

And exactly how is this considered bad? Apple will now get a cut of every single multitouch phone, whether it being Android, RIM, Windows, you name it.

Rodimus Prime
Jun 22, 2011, 10:55 AM
Big question is would it even hold up in court

ChazUK
Jun 22, 2011, 10:59 AM
just like Android copies Expose from Mac, not to mention the multitouch interface in general.

Again this goes back to why software patents should not be allowed, by any company.

What expose features does Android copy?

Let me guess, you're on about HTC's and Samsung "pinch to show all home screens" gesture? That isn't android if so, it's third party code by HTC and Samsung respectively.

chrmjenkins
Jun 22, 2011, 10:59 AM
While I'm an EE, I'm not involved in either displays or patents. Reading the abstract was enough for me to realize that kdarling and cmaier are right. Therefore I'm confident anyone willing to parse the obtuse legal wording can get the same gist.

Nothing to see here, move on.

Also, if PCMag consulted patent experts, maybe they should have printed why those experts claimed it was so broad. I simply don't see it.

shk718
Jun 22, 2011, 11:01 AM
Kind of like how Apple copied Androids notifications (or various other App / jailbreak developers ideas). As big of a fan of Apple as I am, saying they don't borrow ideas from others is simply naive.


Does google have a patent on the pull down? and aren't they open source so anyone can take any of their code?

i don't think your comparison is very good. apple has had drop downs in its os for a very very long time - using your finger to pull it down is a swipe feature of the iphone (again something they had long before google). apple uses this feature to pull the search window onto the screen. what's the difference if it comes from the side or the bottom or the top? so actually - isn't google copying apple??

KingCrimson
Jun 22, 2011, 11:02 AM
Good with Android being sued out of existence, that opens up room for MSFT to come in with their innovative Windows Phone 7 eXperience.

Slurpy2k8
Jun 22, 2011, 11:02 AM
Good. Now maybe Apple can shut down these stupid "we're better than the iPhone because we're droid" idiots. I've used 6 different iPhone killers for a month each at a time and not even one of them came close. Each month of a different phone was hell, too. I'm sick to DEATH of people telling me what they can do with their droid when my iPhone can also do it, and do it better and for free (TETHERING) when it's jailbroken.

"Well, yeah. But then you have to jailbreak it..."

Well... Jailbreaking takes 20 minutes. A fragmented OS lasts forever.

The only people I'm really jealous of are people using their smartphones on T Mobile. I REALLY want my iPhone on the best service possible. The best phone in the world can not be the phone it could be on the worlds worst carrier.

Verizon isn't much better than ATT. But then again I'm thinking back to the experience I had in '06 when I had to cancel my dad's Verizon plan. Took 3 phone calls, 2 hours, 28 /facepalms and a sore throat from screaming at them so much to just cancel my service. Oh, and we STILL got bills for $45/month for 6 months after until we filed for Arbitration with them, along with the BBB. I would NEVER go back to Verizon after that. It would take something really awesome to make me want to switch to them.

I went off topic. Good job, Apple! Shut down as many droids as you can! Make them come up with something else!

Not to add fuel to the fire, but I completely agree. My curiosity being piqued, I came off an iPhone 4 and have been using an android phone for the past few days. All I've read online is how superior, farther ahead android is, the control it gives you, etc. I have to say that Apple has absolutely nothing to worry about. My first mistake was thinking I could update the phone, which came out 2 months ago, to an OS that came out 7 months ago. Yes, the phone came out MONTHS after the latest major android release (2.3) yet it is running an OS, and impossible to update. It's only one of many, many issues the OS has.. needing to have your updates filtered by both the phone manufacturers, then the carriers, is a situation that will keep most of the android userbase running an obsolete version, and a very tiny fraction running anything close to recent. A messy and frustrating situation.

kdarling
Jun 22, 2011, 11:03 AM
The patent is simply this:

Using a certain number of fingers to scroll ("translate") a page around, while using a different number of fingers to scroll an area within it... without moving the containing page.

The only place I can think of offhand where this is currently used on the iPhone or any other phone, is for scrolling a DIV or IFRAME on a web page.

(For those of you who never figured it out, you do so by using two fingers to scroll instead of just one. However, I find it very telling that Apple never put this info in its manual, but many users figured it out anyway. If that's not a definition of creating a solution that's obvious to anyone who uses touch a lot, I don't know what is.)

KingCrimson
Jun 22, 2011, 11:04 AM
Google deserves to be punished for blatant IP theft. Apple should sue them out of business. Evil deserves a beatdown.:apple:

thetexan
Jun 22, 2011, 11:08 AM
I get a kick out of reading online forums during my workday when middle/high school is out for the summer.

NakedPaulToast
Jun 22, 2011, 11:08 AM
This might be a huge win for Apple, but as an Apple consumer this is terrible, for me.

Patent time frame is sensitive, it needs to be sufficiently long to ensure innovators recoup and benefit from their innovations, but sufficiently short to allow competition.

Patent timeframes need to be shortened and simply do not address how quickly technology moves in modern day.

ChazUK
Jun 22, 2011, 11:08 AM
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (Linux; U; Android 3.1; en-us; Xoom Build/HMJ37) AppleWebKit/534.13 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0 Safari/534.13)

Google deserves to be punished for blatant IP theft. Apple should sue them out of business. Evil deserves a beatdown.:apple:

Looking at the explanations of the patent in this thread by people in the know, this "broad" patent won't be helping Apple against Google.

Maybe next time! ;)

cmaier
Jun 22, 2011, 11:09 AM
Folks, here's claim 1 - the other claims are essentially the same idea:

What is claimed is:

1. A method, comprising:

at a portable multifunction device with one or more processors, memory, and a touch screen display;

displaying a portion of web page content in a stationary application window on the touch screen display, wherein the portion of web page content includes:

a frame displaying a portion of frame content, and other content of the web page, comprising content of the web page other than the frame content;

detecting a translation gesture by a single finger on or near the touch screen display;

in response to detecting the translation gesture by the single finger, translating the web page content to display a new portion of web page content in the stationary application window on the touch screen display, wherein translating the web page content includes simultaneously translating the displayed portion of the frame content and the other content of the web page;

detecting a translation gesture by two fingers on or near the touch screen display; and

in response to detecting the translation gesture by the two fingers, translating the frame content to display a new portion of frame content in the stationary application window on the touch screen display, without translating the other content of the web page.


Again, the claims are quite narrow. Because:

1) it applies only to portable devices
2) it applies only to display of WEB content on these devices
3) it requires that the device respond to both one and two finger gestures (or n and m-finger gestures in other claims)
4) it requires that the one finger gesture be used to pan content
5) it requires that the two finger gesture be used to pan/scroll content within a frame of the web page

It does not cover using two fingers to zoom a web page (although it probably covers using two fingers to zoom the contents of a frame so long as the rest of the page outside the remains the same), etc. You cannot infringe if you don't do all the steps in the claim, so one-finger panning is fair game as long as you don't also have two-finger frame scrolling/zooming/panning.

Themaeds
Jun 22, 2011, 11:12 AM
Hardly. The only multi-touch gesture specific to Apple that I can think of, is their three-finger handicapped zoom mode switcher.



The history of touch did not begin in 2007 :)

To those of us developing on touchscreens for decades before Apple, they brought nothing unusual to the table. (I myself first developed on capacitive screens starting in 1992. If you went to Foxwoods and other casinos back then, you might've used my work.)

This patent needs to be struck down as obvious to anyone practiced in the art. Using multiple fingers is a time-honored way of expressing alternative actions on a multi-touch screen, as seen by pinch gestures back in the early '90s, and by the use of more than one finger to denote ctrl-Click or context actions.

(This patent reminds me of the one Apple's trying to get for imitating knob rotations with two fingers, another gesture that's been done for years.)

This is probably the most refreshing post I've ever read on this site.

Dbrown
Jun 22, 2011, 11:12 AM
They're only "way too broad" because now EVERYONE is copying, and using for free Apples ideas on multitouch. People tend to forget that before the first iPhone in 2007 no one was pinching to zoom, using double tap, slide to unlock, etc. It's only broad when you forget where all of this came from.

No one should be allowed to patent a damn gesture. How retarded is that? That's like microsoft patenting right clicking.

Nishi100
Jun 22, 2011, 11:14 AM
Folks, here's claim 1 - the other claims are essentially the same idea:




Again, the claims are quite narrow. Because:

1) it applies only to portable devices
2) it applies only to display of WEB content on these devices
3) it requires that the device respond to both one and two finger gestures (or n and m-finger gestures in other claims)
4) it requires that the one finger gesture be used to pan content
5) it requires that the two finger gesture be used to pan/scroll content within a frame of the web page

It does not cover using two fingers to zoom a web page (although it probably covers using two fingers to zoom the contents of a frame so long as the rest of the page outside the remains the same), etc. You cannot infringe if you don't do all the steps in the claim, so one-finger panning is fair game as long as you don't also have two-finger frame scrolling/zooming/panning.

How many OS' use this, though?
And, this was submitted in 2007 - I don't think they had the idea for iOS X then. :)

writingdevil
Jun 22, 2011, 11:14 AM
I think a lot of these awarded patents are way too broad and stifle creativity. Whether it is Lodys or Apple, some of these patents are just a logical progression of ideas.

it's always easier, after something is created, to look at it and see how the person who made the jump was just extending "a logical progression of ideas."

other people might say it was a creative leap.

if you spend much time in the "creating' mode it doesn't always seem at all the "next logical step" but often is a misstep with great results.

this is not an attack on the post, but simply a way of saying how it easy it is for critics sitting on the sidelines to say how things should have, could have, must have...gone down.

*LTD*
Jun 22, 2011, 11:16 AM
This might be a huge win for Apple, but as an Apple consumer this is terrible, for me.

Why?

cmaier
Jun 22, 2011, 11:18 AM
it's always easier, after something is created, to look at it and see how the person who made the jump was just extending "a logical progression of ideas."

other people might say it was a creative leap.

if you spend much time in the "creating' mode it doesn't always seem at all the "next logical step" but often is a misstep with great results.

this is not an attack on the post, but simply a way of saying how it easy it is for critics sitting on the sidelines to say how things should have, could have, must have...gone down.

Indeed. This may seem obvious now, but the "secondary indicia of non-obviousness" say otherwise: (1) the invention's commercial success, (2) long felt but unresolved needs, (3) the failure of others, (4) skepticism by experts, (5) praise by others, (6) teaching away by others, (7) recognition of a problem, (8) copying of the invention by competitors, and (9) other relevant factors.

Cheerwino
Jun 22, 2011, 11:18 AM
Thanks.

Patent doesn't cover what everyone says. It covers only the use of one finger to move a web page while using two fingers to scroll a frame. (or m fingers and n fingers).



If multi-touch with two fingers or more is now protected, this is going to put a serious damper on my making out techniques. :eek:

igorleandro
Jun 22, 2011, 11:20 AM
This is awesome.

I'm completely favorable to competition. I do think that it leads to innovation and new technologies, with the consumer being the one who benefits the most from it.

On the other hand, I'm 100% against copying, and for the past 4 years that is basically the ONLY thing the industry has done: copy the iPhone. A few companies copied not only the physical dimensions, looks and design, but also the operating system looks.

I hope this gives Apple more ammunition to keep the iPhone unique, so all the other manufacturers can try to come up with something cool on their own, as I also hope that more patents related to the iPhone will be still granted to them. They invented it, nothing more fair than that.

Themaeds
Jun 22, 2011, 11:21 AM
If multi-touch with two fingers or more is now protected, this is going to put a serious damper on my making out techniques. :eek:

hahaha...Sorry hun I have to pay Lodsy.....I mean Apple every time I do my "move"

wizard
Jun 22, 2011, 11:25 AM
Disclaimer: I despise our broken patent system and realize this will unfortunately likely be used to strongarm competitors.

That is exactly what patents are for. The give you legal protection should someone try to rip off your invention. In this case Apple did invent something very unique so the patent grant is reasonable.

That said, I really wonder what people like the folks at Samsung were thinking. Steve Jobs got on stage and ranted about how hard they'd patented it during the introduction presentation. This was Jobs' baby. I'm not surprised that he was willing to press the big red lawsuit button in the patent arms race, and they really are going to get what was coming to them.

It is pretty simple, they saw that they could potentially copy this interface, which was demonstrating great success, without the investment in time and money to develop their own. It is a classic rip off.

However, sued competitors = less innovation all around.

Actually exactly the opposite. Sue Samsung with success and Samsung is forced to innovate to stay in the market. Your position seems to imply the rest of the world is too stupid to compete with Apple. This isn't true but there is a lack of willingness to innovate when a rip off is a quicker track to profits.
Hopefully this isn't broad enough to hurt the actually interesting competitors (especially WebOS/Windows Phone 7) and only hits designs like Samsung's.

No what it needs to do is to hit every one that tries to directly rip off Apples efforts here. That is the whole point of the patent system, it levels the playing field no matter what your connections are. Further why do you believe that it isn't possible to develop alternatives to the approach outlined in the patent? Patents actually drive innovation as companies seek ways to compete, Apple securing this patent is a good thing for all platforms.

NebulaClash
Jun 22, 2011, 11:27 AM
Hardly. The only multi-touch gesture specific to Apple that I can think of, is their three-finger handicapped zoom mode switcher.



The history of touch did not begin in 2007 :)

To those of us developing on touchscreens for decades before Apple, they brought nothing unusual to the table. (I myself first developed on capacitive screens starting in 1992. If you went to Foxwoods and other casinos back then, you might've used my work.)

This patent needs to be struck down as obvious to anyone practiced in the art. Using multiple fingers is a time-honored way of expressing alternative actions on a multi-touch screen, as seen by pinch gestures back in the early '90s, and by the use of more than one finger to denote ctrl-Click or context actions.

(This patent reminds me of the one Apple's trying to get for imitating knob rotations with two fingers, another gesture that's been done for years.)

Interesting. I had never encountered such touch gestures before in any other context. It was always point and click and nothing else.

So those other companies back in the '90s patented all these multi-touch gestures, right?

ssk2
Jun 22, 2011, 11:29 AM
This is awesome.

I'm completely favorable to competition. I do think that it leads to innovation and new technologies, with the consumer being the one who benefits the most from it.

On the other hand, I'm 100% against copying, and for the past 4 years that is basically the ONLY thing the industry has done: copy the iPhone. A few companies copied not only the physical dimensions, looks and design, but also the operating system looks.

I hope this gives Apple more ammunition to keep the iPhone unique, so all the other manufacturers can try to come up with something cool on their own, as I also hope that more patents related to the iPhone will be still granted to them. They invented it, nothing more fair than that.

Look, everyone needs to read the posts by cmaier, someone who has KNOWLEDGE of this area.

This patent does NOT do what you think. The original article has not read the claims of the patent correctly and some fanboys are getting hot and heavy over a complete NON-ISSUE. This will NOT affect competitors in the way you think.

ranReloaded
Jun 22, 2011, 11:29 AM
Everyone give up. Apple won. Figure out something innovative on your own.

(Sorry...had to FanBoi the crap out of that one)

OK, Nokia... It's Payback Time! :D

vartanarsen
Jun 22, 2011, 11:30 AM
They're only "way too broad" because now EVERYONE is copying, and using for free Apples ideas on multitouch. People tend to forget that before the first iPhone in 2007 no one was pinching to zoom, using double tap, slide to unlock, etc. It's only broad when you forget where all of this came from.

You are forgetting:
Close four or five fingers together to return to the home screen.
Scroll up or down with four or five fingers to view the multitasking tray.
Scroll left or right with four or five fingers to switch between open apps.

wizard
Jun 22, 2011, 11:30 AM
Predict it will be like this: Either a company invents a whole new method or they pay Apple. Even in these monopoly-loving days of corporatist rule, Apple will not be allowed to shut anyone down. Won't happen.

The best thing that could happen is that Apple does in fact whip out a few manufactures, especially those coping Apples software directly. In the end it isn't the big deal that many are making it out to be as this is a very easy patent to get around. I can think of a half dozen ways right off the top of my head. All this patent does is protect Apples unique implementation nothing more. It does not exclude other approaches at all.

ranReloaded
Jun 22, 2011, 11:31 AM
Does patent law lend itself to patent trolls more than to companies that actually ship products? It sure seems to. An idiotic patent like Lodsys files all these lawsuits. However, when Apple sues Samsung for obviously ripping them off, some judge says "can't we just all get along?" Justice is FAR from blind in this country. Sorry.

To be fair, the recent Apple vs. Samsung is NOT about patents, but "Trade Dress" (completely different IP beast I think).

Dr Kevorkian94
Jun 22, 2011, 11:32 AM
he he portable multifunctional devise he he :p

ranReloaded
Jun 22, 2011, 11:33 AM
As of right now, I'm totally changing my Mac's alert sound to "sosumi" :)

cmaier
Jun 22, 2011, 11:35 AM
To be fair, the recent Apple vs. Samsung is NOT about patents, but "Trade Dress" (completely different IP beast I think).

It's about trademarks, trade dress, AND patents, actually.

*LTD*
Jun 22, 2011, 11:36 AM
he he portable multifunctional devise he he :p

lmao well done.

Neuro
Jun 22, 2011, 11:43 AM
What about imaginary tech that's appeared in films?

Minority Report clearly shows a two finger zoom out on a photo way back in 2002:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NwVBzx0LMNQ

And here's Microsoft implementing it for real in 2006 (or earlier):
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UMStDdR8TQw

Thunderhawks
Jun 22, 2011, 11:43 AM
Steve Jobs invented the iPhone? :confused: srsly...

Exactly and Al Gore the internet!

And Bill Clinton ........sorry XXX

dba7dba
Jun 22, 2011, 11:45 AM
Really? I think it's just the opposite. In this case, rather than looking at an iPhone and copying that, the competitors will now have to think for themselves for a change.
The way Apple decided to do the iPhone, it's GUI, the user experience, the Appstore, etc. is not the only way to do a Mobile phone. However, looking at the majority of the competition's product line you'd be forgiven if you'd thought otherwise.
I'd rather see Samsung, HTC, Nokia, etc, come up with their own solution to mobile communication. If they can, and are prepared to invest in such a project for the long haul, just like Apple did (remember, Apple worked for years in secret before they felt they got it right), we might actually see some true innovation.

http://www.ificlaims.com/news/top-patents.html
"IFI CLAIMS Announces Top Global Companies Ranked By 2010 U.S. Patents"
Samsung #2 - 4551 patents
Apple #46 - 563 patents

I wouldn't exactly say others should come up with their own solution to mobile communication. There's plenty of innovation coming out of others.



Proof Apple can't agree with itself in how to measure how innovative a company is.

--S Jobs says 'we patented the hell out of iphone etc', meaning Apple believes innovative company like itself owns tons of patents. Hence Apple is an innovative company.
--And yet despite Samsung hitting #2 spot in top 50 list (and apple is #46) in the annual list for 10+ years (granted not all are mobile related but obviously important things like ram, how to manufacture certain parts), Apple's lawyers claim Samsung doesn't innovate.

Hey I'm typing this on a mac and checking email on my iphone so don't call me a hater. just saying what i see.

ranReloaded
Jun 22, 2011, 11:45 AM
It's about trademarks, trade dress, AND patents, actually.

Wow, didn't know; Thank you :)

...While they're at it, they could have added 'Copyright' just for the sake of completeness!!

entatlrg
Jun 22, 2011, 11:45 AM
Thanks.

Patent doesn't cover what everyone says. It covers only the use of one finger to move a web page while using two fingers to scroll a frame. (or m fingers and n fingers).

To infringe, you need to do both.

You're a Patent Attorney?

iBug2
Jun 22, 2011, 11:51 AM
If multi-touch with two fingers or more is now protected, this is going to put a serious damper on my making out techniques. :eek:

Just don't make out commercially :p

SockRolid
Jun 22, 2011, 11:53 AM
Boom

pdjudd
Jun 22, 2011, 12:04 PM
You're a Patent Attorney?
cmaier's profile lists him as an IP attorney. Source (http://forums.macrumors.com/member.php?u=118078). He is very knowledgeable and is the best authority on these matters.

Tiger8
Jun 22, 2011, 12:12 PM
OK, Nokia... It's Payback Time! :D

You bring an Excellent point, NOKIA.

Every single GSM phone maker, including Apple, has to pay Nokia for using its patented GSM technologies (which are a worldwide standard now), every single multi-touch manufacturer will now have to pay Apple.

Sidebar: CDMA (Verizon, Spring) is different. unlike GSM it has never been licensed, basically every single CDMA phone's chip is manufactured by one company, Qualcomm.

ChazUK
Jun 22, 2011, 12:15 PM
You bring an Excellent point, NOKIA.

Every single GSM phone maker, including Apple, has to pay Nokia for using its patented GSM technologies (which are a worldwide standard now), every single multi-touch manufacturer will now have to pay Apple.

Which manufacturers are infringing on this patent specifically?

Sackvillenb
Jun 22, 2011, 12:17 PM
Depending on how broad this patent really is... my concern is that it will stifle competitors... and that's a bad thing. Competition is necessary for truly forward progress and innovation... we'll see...

wordoflife
Jun 22, 2011, 12:29 PM
No one should be allowed to patent a damn gesture. How retarded is that? That's like microsoft patenting right clicking.

Hahaaa ... your example was pretty funny. I laughed. :)
I agree, but it looks like Apple got away with it.
competition = good.

azbigdog
Jun 22, 2011, 12:32 PM
Apple sues Android handset alliance members for multitouch.

Google sues Apple for notifications.

Millions of dollars flow between companies, lawyers make money, nothing of consequence happens to consumers.

But Android is "free" and "open". "Anyone can use it for free". Show us the patent on the notifications.

hansende
Jun 22, 2011, 12:32 PM
I'm not sure why anyone files a patent since the copycat products show up quickly and there is little or no punishment

bsolar
Jun 22, 2011, 12:34 PM
Every single GSM phone maker, including Apple, has to pay Nokia for using its patented GSM technologies (which are a worldwide standard now), every single multi-touch manufacturer will now have to pay Apple.
Only if they implement the patent's specific claims. I doubt Apple got a patent on the concept of multi-touch itself since it's definately too broad and there are loads of prior art examples around. Usually news headlines about patents are very superficial and broad because they have to explain in a sentence what the patent is about, but the claims should be very specific. If they are not the patent is most likely going to be found at least partially invalid later on, if challenged.

Nokia's case was slightly different: they cannot refuse licensing under some regulated terms because their patents are part of the standard. The debate was only about the licensing terms, not the fact that the patents were valid, or that Apple did require to get a license.

silentnite
Jun 22, 2011, 12:40 PM
If you can't beat em- Join em! It is what is is, apple is seriously ahead of the rest. Most of these guys spend to much time trying to copy rather than invent.

Shivetya
Jun 22, 2011, 12:44 PM
What about imaginary tech that's appeared in films?

Minority Report clearly shows a two finger zoom out on a photo way back in 2002:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NwVBzx0LMNQ

And here's Microsoft implementing it for real in 2006 (or earlier):
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UMStDdR8TQw


Lets go to 1991

http://youtu.be/S8lCetZ_57g

applefan69
Jun 22, 2011, 12:49 PM
Disclaimer: I despise our broken patent system and realize this will unfortunately likely be used to strongarm competitors.

That said, I really wonder what people like the folks at Samsung were thinking. Steve Jobs got on stage and ranted about how hard they'd patented it during the introduction presentation. This was Jobs' baby. I'm not surprised that he was willing to press the big red lawsuit button in the patent arms race, and they really are going to get what was coming to them.

However, sued competitors = less innovation all around. Hopefully this isn't broad enough to hurt the actually interesting competitors (especially WebOS/Windows Phone 7) and only hits designs like Samsung's.

True. People are forgetting Apple got ****ed real hard by Microsoft in the past. Steve Jobs got it the hardest.

That was why he smugly said "and Yes it is patented". It just will not happen to Steve Jobs twice.

...for as long as he lives. =/

rotarydialz
Jun 22, 2011, 12:50 PM
Apple has been forced to learn from their past mistakes in patenting their intellectual property. I'm glad they have been awarded this patent.

At the same time I believe that patent law is broken. There should be a common sense exception to some of these broad patents. It's so sad that patent trolling has become the new growth industry.

kdarling
Jun 22, 2011, 12:54 PM
What about imaginary tech that's appeared in films?
Minority Report clearly shows a two finger zoom out on a photo way back in 2002:

The patent is ONLY about SCROLLING a section WITHIN a page, and using a DIFFERENT NUMBER of fingers to SCROLL the whole page.

Example: a scrollable Google map inside a scrollable webpage.

Of course, if you allow one finger to do both, you do not infringe.

Interesting. I had never encountered such touch gestures before in any other context. It was always point and click and nothing else.

That's been pretty much true of mass consumer devices.

There are other touch fields, such as industrial control interfaces, which extensively use virtual knobs, sliders, and other touch objects. Touch gesture vocabulary was a major topic for us in those areas a decade or two ago.

So those other companies back in the '90s patented all these multi-touch gestures, right?

Years ago, everyone shared their ideas freely. Most developers would simply have thought that such easy-to-invent gestures were unpatentable.

Some did so, though. For instance, Apple's patent cites this patent predating theirs (http://appft1.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO1&Sect2=HITOFF&d=PG01&p=1&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsrchnum.html&r=1&f=G&l=50&s1=%2220050057524%22.PGNR.&OS=DN/20050057524&RS=DN/20050057524), which includes in its description, actions such as:

"If the user contacts the touch surface with a pair of fingers simultaneously over an application window displayed on the touch surface and the fingers are closely and generally horizontally spaced, the driver recognizes the simultaneous finger contacts as a scroll gesture and injects a scroll event into the application.

Pointer position data conveyed to the application by the driver in response to subsequent vertical movement of the fingers is interpreted by the application either as scroll up or scroll down commands."

Another older patent referenced in Apple's patent has a claim for using multiple fingers to cause scrolling when more than one touch is seen:

"... scrolling or panning is performed when the at least two unique identifiers move together in substantially the same direction"

So multitouch scrolling is well known, as is single scrolling cited in other patent references. In fact, the whole point of multitouch is give the user more gestures options.

I think someone at Apple noticed that no one had patented scrolling using a combination of single and multi for contained frames, and took advantage of past R&D friendliness and today's overburdened patent system, IMO.

BC2009
Jun 22, 2011, 01:03 PM
Thanks.

Patent doesn't cover what everyone says. It covers only the use of one finger to move a web page while using two fingers to scroll a frame. (or m fingers and n fingers).

To infringe, you need to do both.

Patent is very narrow. Article is wrong.

Yes -- patent would still allow every competitor out there to scroll content via touch on their device. The only difference is that they could not use a certain number of fingers to scroll the overall content, while using a second number of fingers to translate scrollable content displayed within a frame (think a scrollable div, iframe, or frame in HTML, a selection list in a web page or an app, or piece of embedded content in a spread sheet).

However, the alternative to this is to provide scrolling controls (like scrollbars) for that framed content. Another alternative may be to track focus (i.e.: if you click in the framed map area, then touch scrolling effects that and then when you click on the overall page then touch scrolling effects that).

There is however a possible application here that is being missed. The patent says "translate" not "scroll". The term "translate" could be used for pinch-to-zoom as well. So you might be able to think of cases where pinch-to-zoom affecting an area of framed content within an app while single finger swipes affecting scrolling would be applicable. I can think of this on mobile web sites since typically you cannot zoom them (they are displayed full size), but a framed map may be zoomable via two-finger pinch.

Either way the patent requires that you have an primary piece of content which contains a framed area of sub-content and the number of fingers used determines which content area would be translated. Not nearly as broad as the fabled "multi-touch patent".

wikus
Jun 22, 2011, 01:05 PM
Can't believe people come into serious discussions with such comments.

Not even funny.

Ignore *LTD*, he contributes very little rational and logical thought to the forum.

Pink∆Floyd
Jun 22, 2011, 01:14 PM
Everyone give up. Apple won. Figure out something innovative on your own.

(Sorry...had to FanBoi the crap out of that one)

Couldn't agree with you more.

I don't get why these other companies wont come up with something new and innovative like Apple did...

inkswamp
Jun 22, 2011, 01:16 PM
Steve Jobs invented the iPhone? :confused: srsly...

Remedial reading programs in public schools truly are failing us. :rolleyes:

kdarling
Jun 22, 2011, 01:42 PM
Yes -- patent would still allow every competitor out there to scroll content via touch on their device.

Correct, and you gave a nice list of alternative methods.

There is however a possible application here that is being missed. The patent says "translate" not "scroll". The term "translate" could be used for pinch-to-zoom as well.

Umm. Yes, the term could apply to the Z axis. However, the patent seems to be only about scrolling in the X and Y directions.

*LTD*
Jun 22, 2011, 01:55 PM
Just a quick reminder:

Apple filed for this in 2007. When nearly all the major players and a lot of shortsighted and unimaginative pundits said the iPhone will fail and to just ignore it, and that the way of doing smartphones at the time would continue unabated.

tinman0
Jun 22, 2011, 01:58 PM
Woah, walked in on MacHaters, or is AndroidRumors?

Can anyone tell me where MacRumors is?

ChazUK
Jun 22, 2011, 02:00 PM
Woah, walked in on MacHaters, or is AndroidRumors?

Can anyone tell me where MacRumors is?

http://www.macrumors.com

Darwing
Jun 22, 2011, 02:12 PM
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8J2 Safari/6533.18.5)

U kidding? Apple patented the multitouch in the release of the original iPhone, and even stated in the keynote release stated "and we definitely patented it"

Glideslope
Jun 22, 2011, 02:15 PM
The Assimilation is Complete.

Kneel Before The Temple of Steve. :apple:

southernpaws
Jun 22, 2011, 02:31 PM
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8J2 Safari/6533.18.5)

AidenShaw
Jun 22, 2011, 02:37 PM
Woah, walked in on MacHaters, or is AndroidRumors?

Can anyone tell me where MacRumors is?

MacRumours disappeared about the time that Apple Computer dropped "computer" from the name, and the membership demographic here shifted towards pre-teenagers with their first Ipod.

wikus
Jun 22, 2011, 02:58 PM
MacRumours disappeared about the time that Apple Computer dropped "computer" from the name, and the membership demographic here shifted towards pre-teenagers with their first Ipod.

I've been a mac user since long before iPod went mainstream and the general public sheep turned into retards clinging onto a brand.

But you bring a good point that apple dropped 'computer' from their name, since then they've stopped caring about their computers. Me being a power user, its been a kick in the teeth since it happened. Theyve put way too much focus onto iOS. I don't want any of my mac computers, current or future ones going through an iPadification process. The very idea disgusts me greatly.

rjohnstone
Jun 22, 2011, 03:06 PM
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8J2 Safari/6533.18.5)

U kidding? Apple patented the multitouch in the release of the original iPhone, and even stated in the keynote release stated "and we definitely patented it"
Talk about taking something out of context. :rolleyes:

Apple can't patent "multitouch" since they didn't invent the concept. ;)
They have patents on some of their implementations of it.

mdriftmeyer
Jun 22, 2011, 03:44 PM
For a professional assessment always visit PatentlyApple.

http://www.patentlyapple.com/patently-apple/2011/06/apple-wins-patents-for-their-original-iphone-interface-a-microdvi-connector-the-imacs-edge-to-edge-glass-cover-front-row.html

southernpaws
Jun 22, 2011, 04:03 PM
If multi-touch with two fingers or more is now protected, this is going to put a serious damper on my making out techniques. :eek:

Swirl instead of scroll. Gotta change it up.

cmaier
Jun 22, 2011, 04:04 PM
For a professional assessment always visit PatentlyApple.

http://www.patentlyapple.com/patently-apple/2011/06/apple-wins-patents-for-their-original-iphone-interface-a-microdvi-connector-the-imacs-edge-to-edge-glass-cover-front-row.html

I'm sorry, but no, this is gibberish:

Update June 22, 2011: There have been some comment made in the community that Apple's newly granted patent isn't as extensive as first thought. That's simply inaccurate. If you read the patent carefully, Apple has incorporated a multitude of patents under this newly granted patent. Below is just one such paragraph example wherein Apple is incorportating a whopping 9 patents in their entirety into this one granted patent. Is that enough of an eyeopener for skeptics?


....




It doesn't matter what is "incorportated" [sic] into the specification of the patent. In determining whether or not the competition infringes, you look at the claims of the patent. And the claims are quite specific. Someday Apple may get a divisional application granted that claims some of the other things discussed, but that day isn't today. And this "incorportating" [sic] idea is silly anyway - in order to be given protection for the things discussed in those other incorporated patents, those patents must be GRANTED. And, even then, those patents would only grant protection for whatever is claimed in the claims of those patents.

I can describe ALL SORTS of things in the text of a patent - but I don't get any exclusive right to them (that is, I have no legal right to exclude others from practicing them) unless the patent claims include those things. And the patent claims here only claim the idea discussed in this thread - the idea of using two fingers to move around inside a frame of a web page while using one finger to move the webpage around. (technically n and m fingers)

igorleandro
Jun 22, 2011, 04:09 PM
Look, everyone needs to read the posts by cmaier, someone who has KNOWLEDGE of this area.

This patent does NOT do what you think. The original article has not read the claims of the patent correctly and some fanboys are getting hot and heavy over a complete NON-ISSUE. This will NOT affect competitors in the way you think.
So, company X invents something. Company Y steals that idea without blinking. You stand up and applaud?

By your post then I should understand that anyone who thinks that stealing Apple's IP is wrong is then a fanboy. Nice...

I don't care about the "competitors", I care about the outrageous constant copying without putting a minimal effort to create something good. If they get permission to use the IP or pay for it, fine by me, otherwise, you're just defending pirates and killing the inventors.

This is not "the iPhone" patent, this is just one amongst several others. IMHO, I hope Apple gets credit for the innovation it brought to the market, and those who want to use it should as well pay for it.

Electrified
Jun 22, 2011, 04:27 PM
This is how the patent works

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lxGpoc5HRYc&feature=player_embedded

Watch the video

cmaier
Jun 22, 2011, 04:41 PM
Someone who actually understands patents:

http://thisismynext.com/2011/06/22/apple-granted-patent-webpage-scrolling-behaviors-media-crazy/

*LTD*
Jun 22, 2011, 04:57 PM
More desperation by Apple. They will try anything to stop Androids domination. Silly Apply we all know Android is the dominant smartphone os.

Apple filed for this in 2007. You know, when no one thought anything would come of the iPhone and that it was alright to just ignore it.

The patent was finally granted now.

This is just a lot of the usual prescience by Apple.


Someone who actually understands patents:

http://thisismynext.com/2011/06/22/apple-granted-patent-webpage-scrolling-behaviors-media-crazy/

An excellent explanation by Nilay Patel. I actually enjoyed it!

erzhik
Jun 22, 2011, 05:10 PM
omg, so many fans getting arroused by this patent as if its theirs. They were granted a patent, so what? Others will have to pay, so what? How many innovations does Apple take from others? This is what all companies do. They take from each other, and pay licence fees. Why does everytime some company files a patent, 16 year old fanboys have to come out and bash others? Apple will not sue, they will collect fees on all future multitouch devices.

840quadra
Jun 22, 2011, 05:11 PM
The fact that so few people understand patents, is just proof to me (and many it appears) of how broken the patent system is.

One of the main points of the patent system was to protect an inventors idea from being copied, or used by others without permission. Inventors are rarely Lawyers, but here in 2011, they are almost expected to be.

I have a great idea, but I need to search over 8 million patents, and 3 - 4 million applications to verify that I am not using someone else's idea. :confused:

I am not saying the system needs to go away, perhaps needs a more modern replacement, with a much better indexing system that a tech savvy garage inventor could search / refrence.

chrmjenkins
Jun 22, 2011, 05:12 PM
Ars is covering the debate by linking to both sides of the coin here:

http://arstechnica.com/apple/news/2011/06/too-broad-or-too-narrow-apple-multitouch-patent-sparks-debate.ars

cmaier
Jun 22, 2011, 05:19 PM
Ars is covering the debate by linking to both sides of the coin here:

http://arstechnica.com/apple/news/2011/06/too-broad-or-too-narrow-apple-multitouch-patent-sparks-debate.ars

Looks like the people who actually understand how to read a patent are finally stepping forward to point out you need to read the claims, not the abstract, to figure out what the patent covers :-)

chrmjenkins
Jun 22, 2011, 05:27 PM
Looks like the people who actually understand how to read a patent are finally stepping forward to point out you need to read the claims, not the abstract, to figure out what the patent covers :-)

Actually I understood from only the abstract once I read your and kdarling's comments.

moderately
Jun 22, 2011, 05:45 PM
However, sued competitors = less innovation all around.

I don't see how this follows at all. If I can't use your invention I am forced to innovate more instead of following your lead.

wxman2003
Jun 22, 2011, 06:57 PM
http://www.infoworld.com/d/mobile-technology/apple-awarded-patent-iphone-interface-042

mysterioustko
Jun 22, 2011, 07:08 PM
I don't think this patent will stand as is..it's way too broad. Apple didn't invent multitouch and to award them a patent on multitouch on a mobile device is VERY broad, such to the extent that even if new technology is developed that utilizes more than one finger at a time, it would infringe on their patent. I'm sure this one will be tied up in court for a while. I don't think anyone (besides Apple shareholders) should consider this good news, as if the patent does stand, it has great potential to stifle the progression of mobile technology (yet another reason I don't think it will stand).

FX4568
Jun 22, 2011, 07:12 PM
"You need a “portable multifunction device with one or more processors, memory, and a touch screen display.” Check!

That device needs to display “a portion of a web page in a stationary application window,” and that portion has to include both the regular page content and a “frame displaying a portion of frame content.” That’s something like a Google Maps embed — it’s a frame within a webpage that displays other content.

The device has to “detect a translation gesture by a single finger,” and in response somehow translate both the main content and the frame content. That means when you scroll with a single finger, everything has to move.
Lastly, the device has to be able to detect “a translation gesture by two fingers” and in response translate only the frame content without translating the main content. That’s exactly what happens on the iPhone today — you can pinch-to-zoom on a map embed without zooming a main web page.

Now, that’s a pretty narrow patent, and I don’t think the big brains at Google or Microsoft (or Motorola or Samsung or HTC or whoever) will have a hard time engineering around it — it’s really just one specific type of multitouch interaction. I certainly wouldn’t call it an “iPhone patent” or anything nearly so broad or sensational. That said, it’s certainly yet another arrow in Apple’s quiver of patents on the things that make the iPhone work the way it does, and Cupertino may well assert it against another OEM sometime down the line. But even still, Apple’s already locked in litigation against HTC, Samsung, and Motorola — one more granted patent isn’t going to swing the balance by much. So let’s all take a breath and remember to read the claims carefully next time, shall we? It’s better for everyone."

- thisismynext.com

People need to seriously open up their minds and read a little more on other news. Only reading "macrumors.com" will not get you really far. Reading different things give you many different perspectives.

I'm Sorry I sound like a d-bag, but all this "IPHONE PATENT ALL SMARTPHONE COMPANIES WILL DIE" is wearing me out.

Dcuellar
Jun 22, 2011, 08:18 PM
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8G4 Safari/6533.18.5)

However, sued competitors = less innovation all around.

I don't see how this follows at all. If I can't use your invention I am forced to innovate more instead of following your lead.

The idea behind his comment is that patents by nature are a legal way of monopolizing.

Those companies who use Apple's technology will now be paying Apple and Apple will be gaining a sustainable advantage. Those companies who decide to innovate will be forced to go back to the drawing board and use more of their resources in R&D. Some will be successful at innovating while others won't. Those who are successful would still have to play the catch up game with Apple.

Personally, I say good for Apple. They were the first ones to devote their resources to get that technology in their products. Meanwhile, the copycats have had 3 years of selling products which have leached off of Apple's tech.

azbigdog
Jun 22, 2011, 08:41 PM
This is what this is all about. The application is saying that the ui most commonly used at the time of this filing was not really user friendly. It sucked, and everyone was trying to make a keyboard with more buttons to do more things. They are changing the game! They are innovating! They are saying the status quo sucks, and needs to be changed. They filed their first patent application for multipoint touch screen in 2004. Give some credit where credit is due. Without Apple innovation, the "smartphone" as we know it today would be very different. Quote;
As portable electronic devices become more compact, and the number of functions performed by a given device increase, it has become a significant challenge to design a user interface that allows users to easily interact with a multifunction device. This challenge is particular significant for handheld portable devices, which have much smaller screens than desktop or laptop computers. This situation is unfortunate because the user interface is the gateway through which users receive not only content but also responses to user actions or behaviors, including user attempts to access a device's features, tools, and functions. Some portable communication devices (e.g., mobile telephones, sometimes called mobile phones, cell phones, cellular telephones, and the like) have resorted to adding more pushbuttons, increasing the density of push buttons, overloading the functions of pushbuttons, or using complex menu systems to allow a user to access, store and manipulate data. These conventional user interfaces often result in complicated key sequences and menu hierarchies that must be memorized by the user.
More;
Patent application filed in 2004 by Apple for capacitive touchscreen is granted
Posted: 17 Feb 2010,

pkson
Jun 22, 2011, 08:52 PM
hasn't pinch to zoom and other multitouch gestures been already patented when the first iPhone came out?

I thought that's what SJ meant when he said, "and boy have we patented it."

I also thought that's why Samsung (I dunno about the other companies, but I have lots of friends working for SS and LG, so I can refer to them) was looking for ways around the pinch to zoom for a LOOONG time.

When I mentioned the iPhone to a SS friend, and then later showed him the iPod Touch (because that's what got to Korea first) he said, "Those patents won't be exclusive for long, companies always share patents."
I said, "probably not." I was right, SS couldn't use pinch to zoom.

Soon, they had seminars and they invited people from all over the world to show them an effective "pinch to zoom" type gesture that would not infringe on Apple's patent.

They ended up with double tapping for a while, but finally made their accelerometer work to zoom and now they have a "move up and down with thumbs on screen to zoom" feature (maybe it was for the digital zoom on the camera)

Given all the stuff that happened, I was under the impression that lots of multi touch gestures were already patented by Apple.

So... on topic, this new patent, if it's only for double finger scrolling inside a web page, then not much of a problem for anyone.

mdriftmeyer
Jun 22, 2011, 08:55 PM
I'm sorry, but no, this is gibberish:



It doesn't matter what is "incorportated" [sic] into the specification of the patent. In determining whether or not the competition infringes, you look at the claims of the patent. And the claims are quite specific. Someday Apple may get a divisional application granted that claims some of the other things discussed, but that day isn't today. And this "incorportating" [sic] idea is silly anyway - in order to be given protection for the things discussed in those other incorporated patents, those patents must be GRANTED. And, even then, those patents would only grant protection for whatever is claimed in the claims of those patents.

I can describe ALL SORTS of things in the text of a patent - but I don't get any exclusive right to them (that is, I have no legal right to exclude others from practicing them) unless the patent claims include those things. And the patent claims here only claim the idea discussed in this thread - the idea of using two fingers to move around inside a frame of a web page while using one finger to move the webpage around. (technically n and m fingers)

I believe the purpose of this collection of patents not only covers each individual patent, respectively, as cited by their own patents, but several of these patents are uniquely and jointly implemented within Apple's embedded devices they target and now Apple could be developing a product implementing all of these patents into one or several upcoming products and have been granted a unique patent that combines them all in a specific implementation.

Obviously, each one of these cover different devices in theory:

http://www.freepatentsonline.com/20110023287.pdf

http://www.freepatentsonline.com/20110078624.pdf

http://www.freepatentsonline.com/7800592.pdf

etc.

cmaier
Jun 22, 2011, 09:03 PM
I believe the purpose of this collection of patents not only covers each individual patent, respectively, as cited by their own patents, but several of these patents are uniquely and jointly implemented within Apple's embedded devices they target and now Apple could be developing a product implementing all of these patents into one or several upcoming products and have been granted a unique patent that combines them all in a specific implementation.

Obviously, each one of these cover different devices in theory:

http://www.freepatentsonline.com/20110023287.pdf

http://www.freepatentsonline.com/20110078624.pdf

http://www.freepatentsonline.com/7800592.pdf

etc.

I'm not sure entirely sure I understand your point, but keep a couple things in mind. First, the stuff he lists in that article are not patents. Similarly, two of the three URLs you list above are not patents. They are patent applications. Huge difference.

Second, each patent stands on its own - I infringe the claims of one or more patents. The fact that one patent refers to others doesn't change the scope of that patent.

In this case, the patent that was granted yesterday covers something very narrow (the m and n finger swipe of a web view with a frame). That's it. That guy's argument that somehow the patent is very broad because it refers to other patents is nonsense. This patent does not "cover" the combination of all the other patents. It covers only what is claimed. The only way Apple can sue anyone for infringing is if they do the two finger swipe thing referred to in the claims.

kdarling
Jun 22, 2011, 09:37 PM
... this "incorportating" [sic] idea is silly anyway - in order to be given protection for the things discussed in those other incorporated patents, those patents must be GRANTED.

Thank you. Those references are simply to other applications, at least one of which has been rejected once already.

http://thisismynext.com/2011/06/22/apple-granted-patent-webpage-scrolling-behaviors-media-crazy/

Lastly, the device has to be able to detect “a translation gesture by two fingers” and in response translate only the frame content without translating the main content. That’s exactly what happens on the iPhone today — you can pinch-to-zoom on a map embed without zooming a main web page.

Nice blog, but it used the wrong example with the zoom. Again, the patent is ONLY about scrolling in an embedded frame, not about zooming or 3D rotation or anything else. As the patent claims several times:

"...translating the frame content in the stationary application window, to display a new portion of frame content... "

In graphics speak, translating to display a new portion = XY scrolling.

I don't think this patent will stand as is..it's way too broad.

It's not that broad, but it's certainly an obvious solution on a multitouch screen. You can just imagine one developer talking to another: "Hey, Billy Bob, scrolling with one finger always moves the whole page around. But I sometimes want to move around just a section inside of it. So I need a different scrolling gesture that's not too different from the one-finger method. By the way, I'm on a screen that can recognize the movement of more than one finger. Any ideas?"

D'oh!

hasn't pinch to zoom and other multitouch gestures been already patented when the first iPhone came out? I thought that's what SJ meant when he said, "and boy have we patented it."

Nope, Apple has no patent on pinch to zoom. Pinch dates back to at least the early 1990s. They weren't even the first to publicly talk about doing it on a phone.

Rodimus Prime
Jun 22, 2011, 09:49 PM
More desperation by Apple. They will try anything to stop Androids domination. Silly Apply we all know Android is the dominant smartphone os.

I do not agree with LTD on much but Apple filed for this patent in 2007. It just took this long to work threw the system but basically it is retro active back to 2007 and it counts as years off the patents life as it already been "active" for that long.

Also people who are much more knowledge in this field have pointed out that it is not a very broad patent and might not even stand up if Apple tried to sue someone for it as because it would be an obvious solution to the problem. Add in the fact that I would not be surprised in the least that there is some prior art out to it as well. Surface has been a project that started research at MS in 2001. God knows how many patents and things are in all that research that could easily kill this patent by Apple if they tried to use it in court against someone.

cmaier
Jun 22, 2011, 09:50 PM
Thank you. Those references are simply to other applications, at least one of which has been rejected once already.



Nice blog, but it used the wrong example with the zoom. Again, the patent is ONLY about scrolling in an embedded frame, not about zooming or 3D rotation or anything else. As the patent claims several times:

"...translating the frame content in the stationary application window, to display a new portion of frame content... "

In graphics speak, translating to display a new portion = XY scrolling.


It's a matter for the Markman hearing. If a zoom changes the effective origin of the view it might be a translation within the meaning of the patent - a patentee is entitled to be his own lexicographer. I'm not going to read the entire specification to figure out what the proper construction of "translate" is :-)

BTW, as far as that patent application being "rejected" already, I wouldn't put much weight on that. A patent that issues without any rejections may be a worthless patent - it often means the patent examiner gave up too early and probably didn't find the best art. The best patents often get past lots of rejections - over time the claims are tailored to avoid the prior art, and end up pretty bulletproof by the time the patent issues. It's very rare for a patent to issue without at least one rejection along the way.

lilo777
Jun 22, 2011, 10:12 PM
So, company X invents something. Company Y steals that idea without blinking. You stand up and applaud?

By your post then I should understand that anyone who thinks that stealing Apple's IP is wrong is then a fanboy. Nice...

I don't care about the "competitors", I care about the outrageous constant copying without putting a minimal effort to create something good. If they get permission to use the IP or pay for it, fine by me, otherwise, you're just defending pirates and killing the inventors.

This is not "the iPhone" patent, this is just one amongst several others. IMHO, I hope Apple gets credit for the innovation it brought to the market, and those who want to use it should as well pay for it.

What exactly did Apple invent here? I am sure that if 3rd graders were told about multi-touch capabilities and asked to "invent" context-sensitive scrolling it would take them all 5 minutes (probably less). There is no invention here, period. It's just a "translation" of well known GUI techniques to multi-touch environment. All they patented is the ability of the device/application to do one thing when user uses one finger and something different when two fingers are involved (plus context analysis). But that's the basic principle of multi-touch in a first place. Are they trying to patent specifically "two-finger scroll"? Let's let them. And then another company will patent "two-finger zoom" and another one will invent (and patent) "three-finger" scroll. The rest of us will have to use ten fingers to do something in multi-touch interfaces. Does it make sense? Are there any precedents of similar application of patent law? I do not think so. This patent is clearly un-enforceable (just like most Apple patents are). This one will certainly go the way of their app store trademark and the rest of the crap they have been trying lately.

cmaier
Jun 22, 2011, 10:15 PM
This patent is clearly un-enforceable (just like most Apple patents are). This one will certainly go the way of their app store trademark and the rest of the crap they have been trying lately.

No it's not. All patents receive a presumption of validity. To show it's invalid, a challenger will have to find a substantial new question of patentability in the form of one or more printed publication the USPTO didn't already consider, or, in court, show that a single printed reference or U.S. sold product, or some combination of such prior art, teaches what's in the claim.

In short, to invalidate this, someone is going to have to find art that teaches what's in the claims - an attack based on "hey, this is obvious because what else are you going to do to scroll a frame?" is not going to work.

Thex1138
Jun 22, 2011, 10:56 PM
The key inclusions do make this a far-reaching patent:
A touch-sensitive display in some embodiments of the touch screen may be as described in the following applications: (1) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/381,313, "Multipoint Touch Surface Controller," filed May 2, 2006; (2) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/840,862, "Multipoint Touchscreen," filed May 6, 2004; (3) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/903,964, "Gestures For Touch Sensitive Input Devices," filed Jul. 30, 2004; (4) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/048,264, "Gestures For Touch Sensitive Input Devices," filed Jan. 31, 2005; (5) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/038,590, "Mode-Based Graphical User Interfaces For Touch Sensitive Input Devices," filed Jan. 18, 2005; (6) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/228,758, "Virtual Input Device Placement On A Touch Screen User Interface," filed Sep. 16, 2005; (7) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/228,700, "Operation Of A Computer With A Touch Screen Interface," filed Sep. 16, 2005; (8) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/228,737, "Activating Virtual Keys Of A Touch-Screen Virtual Keyboard," filed Sep. 16, 2005; and (9) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/367,749, "Multi-Functional Hand-Held Device," filed Mar. 3, 2006. All of these applications are incorporated by reference herein in their entirety.
:rolleyes:

cmaier
Jun 22, 2011, 10:58 PM
The key inclusions do make this a far-reaching patent:
A touch-sensitive display in some embodiments of the touch screen may be as described in the following applications: (1) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/381,313, "Multipoint Touch Surface Controller," filed May 2, 2006; (2) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/840,862, "Multipoint Touchscreen," filed May 6, 2004; (3) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/903,964, "Gestures For Touch Sensitive Input Devices," filed Jul. 30, 2004; (4) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/048,264, "Gestures For Touch Sensitive Input Devices," filed Jan. 31, 2005; (5) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/038,590, "Mode-Based Graphical User Interfaces For Touch Sensitive Input Devices," filed Jan. 18, 2005; (6) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/228,758, "Virtual Input Device Placement On A Touch Screen User Interface," filed Sep. 16, 2005; (7) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/228,700, "Operation Of A Computer With A Touch Screen Interface," filed Sep. 16, 2005; (8) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/228,737, "Activating Virtual Keys Of A Touch-Screen Virtual Keyboard," filed Sep. 16, 2005; and (9) U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/367,749, "Multi-Functional Hand-Held Device," filed Mar. 3, 2006. All of these applications are incorporated by reference herein in their entirety.
:rolleyes:

Sigh. No these "inclusions" are irrelevant. When evaluating a patent, read the CLAIMS. It doesn't matter what is "included."

KingCrimson
Jun 22, 2011, 11:24 PM
Bottom line, Apple owns multi-touch in any implementation on a mobile device and they will sue Google/HTC/Samsung out of existence. Steve Jobs feels aggrieved and he will do this just to make a point.

cmaier
Jun 22, 2011, 11:26 PM
Bottom line, Apple owns multi-touch in any implementation on a mobile device and they will sue Google/HTC/Samsung out of existence. Steve Jobs feels aggrieved and he will do this just to make a point.

Yes. That's the bottom line in the same sense that one plus one is three.

Meaning it's wrong.

KingCrimson
Jun 22, 2011, 11:28 PM
Yes. That's the bottom line in the same sense that one plus one is three.

Meaning it's wrong.

Apple destroys all.

SactoGuy18
Jun 22, 2011, 11:30 PM
I think Apple has to be VERY careful about this patent.

The reason is simple: Apple has a huge marketshare of the "smart" cellphone market and is effectively the most dominant player in the tablet computer market. As such, they could face intense scrutiny by the Federal Trade Commission in the USA and the European Commission antitrust authorities if Apple tries to use this patent to stamp out competitive "smart" cellphone and tablet computer models.

KingCrimson
Jun 22, 2011, 11:36 PM
I think Apple has to be VERY careful about this patent.

The reason is simple: Apple has a huge marketshare of the "smart" cellphone market and is effectively the most dominant player in the tablet computer market. As such, they could face intense scrutiny by the Federal Trade Commission in the USA and the European Commission antitrust authorities if Apple tries to use this patent to stamp out competitive "smart" cellphone and tablet computer models.

Apple dominates markets via innovation, not coercion like MSFT. Natural monopoly due to innovation is not frowned upon by the DOJ. Remember MSFT is a convicted monopolist.

cmaier
Jun 22, 2011, 11:38 PM
I think Apple has to be VERY careful about this patent.

The reason is simple: Apple has a huge marketshare of the "smart" cellphone market and is effectively the most dominant player in the tablet computer market. As such, they could face intense scrutiny by the Federal Trade Commission in the USA and the European Commission antitrust authorities if Apple tries to use this patent to stamp out competitive "smart" cellphone and tablet computer models.

Patents, by definition, are government-sanctioned limited-time monopolies. Absent certain circumstances, it's not illegal to use one's patents to prevent competitors from practicing the patent.

Popeye206
Jun 23, 2011, 12:09 AM
What exactly did Apple invent here? I am sure that if 3rd graders were told about multi-touch capabilities and asked to "invent" context-sensitive scrolling it would take them all 5 minutes (probably less). There is no invention here, period. It's just a "translation" of well known GUI techniques to multi-touch environment. All they patented is the ability of the device/application to do one thing when user uses one finger and something different when two fingers are involved (plus context analysis). But that's the basic principle of multi-touch in a first place. Are they trying to patent specifically "two-finger scroll"? Let's let them. And then another company will patent "two-finger zoom" and another one will invent (and patent) "three-finger" scroll. The rest of us will have to use ten fingers to do something in multi-touch interfaces. Does it make sense? Are there any precedents of similar application of patent law? I do not think so. This patent is clearly un-enforceable (just like most Apple patents are). This one will certainly go the way of their app store trademark and the rest of the crap they have been trying lately.

And it was so obvious in 2007 before the iphone? :rolleyes:

ThisIsNotMe
Jun 23, 2011, 12:26 AM
I think Apple has to be VERY careful about this patent.

The reason is simple: Apple has a huge marketshare of the "smart" cellphone market and is effectively the most dominant player in the tablet computer market. As such, they could face intense scrutiny by the Federal Trade Commission in the USA and the European Commission antitrust authorities if Apple tries to use this patent to stamp out competitive "smart" cellphone and tablet computer models.

So you are telling me that to enter the tablet market you *must* have multi touch?

Laughable, there are plenty of tablets w/o multi touch and they can compete on their own merits.

The funniest part of all of this is the fandroids claiming how such a "broad" and "obvious" patent would be bad. Hate to break it to them but Googles entire business rests on one certain patent granted to them by Stanford that could be equally "broad" and "obvious".

benjo765
Jun 23, 2011, 03:38 AM
all hail king steve. inventor and saviour of all things.

benjo765
Jun 23, 2011, 03:40 AM
And it was so obvious in 2007 before the iphone? :rolleyes:

Yes. Besides mountains of comments, investigations, speculations and research, there is also this movie called Minority Report FIVE YEARS BEFORE THAT- its like a visual documentary on how apple aren't as revolutionarily inventive as you/they seem to think.

boss.king
Jun 23, 2011, 04:35 AM
Why do people think Apple will try stop other devices from using multitouch? All the other companies have to do is pay them a licensing fee for the use of multitouch = win win

SactoGuy18
Jun 23, 2011, 06:37 AM
I think you folks need to read up on the famous cases the Federal government brought against the United Shoe Manufacturing Company during the first half of the 20th Century--United Shoe was accused of its critical patents on shoemaking machinery to crush competitors.

Apple now stands in that very position with its critical patent on touchscreen interfaces for cellphones and tablet computers. One wrong move and all legal h*** could break loose against Apple, and that's something that the company with its highly-curated PR don't want. Why do you think Apple had to back down on development tools for iOS and the subscription model for digital magazines in the iOS App Store?

Oletros
Jun 23, 2011, 07:18 AM
Why do people think Apple will try stop other devices from using multitouch? All the other companies have to do is pay them a licensing fee for the use of multitouch = win win

Which patent about multitouch has to be paid to Apple?

Oletros
Jun 23, 2011, 07:19 AM
I think you folks need to read up on the famous cases the Federal government brought against the United Shoe Manufacturing Company during the first half of the 20th Century--United Shoe was accused of its critical patents on shoemaking machinery to crush competitors.

Apple now stands in that very position with its critical patent on touchscreen interfaces for cellphones and tablet computers. One wrong move and all legal h*** could break loose against Apple, and that's something that the company with its highly-curated PR don't want. Why do you think Apple had to back down on development tools for iOS and the subscription model for digital magazines in the iOS App Store?

This patent isn't critical

cmaier
Jun 23, 2011, 08:57 AM
I think you folks need to read up on the famous cases the Federal government brought against the United Shoe Manufacturing Company during the first half of the 20th Century--United Shoe was accused of its critical patents on shoemaking machinery to crush competitors.

Apple now stands in that very position with its critical patent on touchscreen interfaces for cellphones and tablet computers. One wrong move and all legal h*** could break loose against Apple, and that's something that the company with its highly-curated PR don't want. Why do you think Apple had to back down on development tools for iOS and the subscription model for digital magazines in the iOS App Store?

This patent isn't critical

And that case set the opposite precedent and would actually help Apple if anyone accused them of wrong doing for enforcing their patents.


It doesn't matter how "critical" your patents are - you can enforce them as long as you don't know them to be invalid an as long as you don't do things like product tying. In your cited case, the court rejected the very idea you are espousing.

If you are going to cite a case, you need to cite one where the court actually ruled in a way that supports your theory.

ThisIsNotMe
Jun 23, 2011, 12:19 PM
Yes. Besides mountains of comments, investigations, speculations and research, there is also this movie called Minority Report FIVE YEARS BEFORE THAT- its like a visual documentary on how apple aren't as revolutionarily inventive as you/they seem to think.


LOL - This is the real world, not CGI.

ranReloaded
Jun 23, 2011, 12:20 PM
Even if Apple end up in a position to enforce these patents, I don't think it will be that a bad influence for the industry as a whole. I mean, how much is Nokia already nickeling from practically every other player on the field with their mobile phone patents?

rjohnstone
Jun 23, 2011, 12:29 PM
LOL - This is the real world, not CGI.
Totally irrelevant.
You would be surprised how many patents exist only on paper and not as an actual "thing".
The fact that someone came up with a concept for interacting with objects on a screen via "Hollywood magic" instead of code is moot.

cmaier
Jun 23, 2011, 12:44 PM
Totally irrelevant.
You would be surprised how many patents exist only on paper and not as an actual "thing".
The fact that someone came up with a concept for interacting with objects on a screen via "Hollywood magic" instead of code is moot.

No, it's not entirely moot. If the idea (e.g. as shown in a movie) is insufficiently fleshed out to enable a person having ordinary skill in the art to practice it, while the patent discloses with sufficient detail how to practice it and the claims of the patent address aspects of the idea beyond what was in the movie, the movie is unlikely to have invalidated the patent.

For example, a movie may depict a machine that converts water to gasoline, but not explained how it works. If I figure out how to actually do it, I can get a patent on the method and/or machine that does it.

deellow
Jun 23, 2011, 12:49 PM
... so don't flame me. But didn't Steve Jobs announce that they had patented it during the original iPhone introduction? He said "and boy have we patented it."

chrmjenkins
Jun 23, 2011, 12:52 PM
... so don't flame me. But didn't Steve Jobs announce that they had patented it during the original iPhone introduction? He said "and boy have we patented it."

He simply meant that they've submitted patents regarding it, which they did. Quite a few.

cmaier
Jun 23, 2011, 12:54 PM
... so don't flame me. But didn't Steve Jobs announce that they had patented it during the original iPhone introduction? He said "and boy have we patented it."

They had filed a lot of patent applications. It takes several years from when you file an application until you get a patent issued by the USPTO (or other international patent agency). And, along the way, you may decide there is no way the USPTO will ever agree to allow your patent claims, in which case you might give up.

rovex
Jun 23, 2011, 12:56 PM
They obviously have the patent on the ios5 android notification system...

Oh wait.

rjohnstone
Jun 23, 2011, 01:46 PM
No, it's not entirely moot. If the idea (e.g. as shown in a movie) is insufficiently fleshed out to enable a person having ordinary skill in the art to practice it, while the patent discloses with sufficient detail how to practice it and the claims of the patent address aspects of the idea beyond what was in the movie, the movie is unlikely to have invalidated the patent.

For example, a movie may depict a machine that converts water to gasoline, but not explained how it works. If I figure out how to actually do it, I can get a patent on the method and/or machine that does it.
True...
I was referring to the interactions on the screen in Minority Report against the claims made about multitouch in general. Not this patent specifically.

Some of the interactions were pretty detailed.
So much so that input/actions/gestures and results could be derived.
A programmer with knowledge of coding a multitouch interface should be able to reproduce it.

shamino
Jun 23, 2011, 02:32 PM
As much as I don't like the idea of software patents, this is legitimate, but I'm not so certain that the patent should go to Apple.

Jeff Han, while doing research at NYU produced several multitouch prototype systems, demonstrating many of the gestures we all take for granted today. His company, Perceptive Pixel (http://www.perceptivepixel.com) produces multitouch products today. I'm not sure who shipped the first commercial product, but I'm nearly 100% certain that Han's research group was the first to invent the tech.

Apple deserves a lot of credit for making this tech small and cheap enough to cram into mass-market devices, but they didn't invent it.

cmaier
Jun 23, 2011, 02:37 PM
As much as I don't like the idea of software patents, this is legitimate, but I'm not so certain that the patent should go to Apple.

Jeff Han, while doing research at NYU produced several multitouch prototype systems, demonstrating many of the gestures we all take for granted today. His company, Perceptive Pixel (http://www.perceptivepixel.com) produces multitouch products today. I'm not sure who shipped the first commercial product, but I'm nearly 100% certain that Han's research group was the first to invent the tech.

Apple deserves a lot of credit for making this tech small and cheap enough to cram into mass-market devices, but they didn't invent it.

nor did they patent it.

Jagardn
Jun 23, 2011, 09:58 PM
Somewhere in Cupertino, Steve Jobs is smiling.

:D:DAnd I as a shareholder have a grin from ear to ear!!:D:D

Jagardn
Jun 23, 2011, 10:05 PM
I think Apple has to be VERY careful about this patent.

The reason is simple: Apple has a huge marketshare of the "smart" cellphone market and is effectively the most dominant player in the tablet computer market. As such, they could face intense scrutiny by the Federal Trade Commission in the USA and the European Commission antitrust authorities if Apple tries to use this patent to stamp out competitive "smart" cellphone and tablet computer models.

The patent is not to destroy the other companies who are making devices that infringe on the patent. It is in place so they can attempt to make those companies pay royalties to Apple for every smartphone they sell.:D

kdarling
Jun 24, 2011, 06:52 AM
It's a matter for the Markman hearing. If a zoom changes the effective origin of the view it might be a translation within the meaning of the patent - a patentee is entitled to be his own lexicographer. I'm not going to read the entire specification to figure out what the proper construction of "translate" is :-)

I'm a longtime computer graphics programmer. "Translate" means moving along an axis. Everything in the patent, from abstract to description, makes it clear that it's about XY scrolling.

E.g. "In some embodiments, translating the page content comprises translating the page content in a vertical, horizontal, or diagonal direction."

And it was so obvious in 2007 before the iphone? :rolleyes:

Rolling eyes alone does not make a valid debate point. Let's try facts:

The patent has references to previous patents about both single and multiple finger scrolling. So the idea of being able to use a combination of m and n number of fingers for such gestures is well known.

Heck, Google currently uses two fingers to do a 3D view transformation within their Map frame.

Since using a different number of fingers to accomplish a different action is the whole point of multi-touch, I'm astonished that the PTO would even consider allowing a submission of what is actually just a gesture vocabulary.

Cmaier, that's all this is. No method. Just a vocabulary. How is that patentable?

cmaier
Jun 24, 2011, 08:30 AM
I'm a longtime computer graphics programmer. "Translate" means moving along an axis. Everything in the patent, from abstract to description, makes it clear that it's about XY scrolling.

E.g. "[I]In some embodiments, translating the page content comprises translating the page content in a vertical, horizontal, or diagonal direction."


Your citation proves my point. "in some embodiments" means that there are other embodiments in which that is not true.

those other embodiments need not be disclosed in any detail if they would be apparent to someone having ordinary skill in the art.

In any event, I assure you that the language you just cited is enough to let a patent attorney argue with a straight face that translation need not be limited to shifting of origin, and may also apply to scaling, rotation, etc. This argument may or may not win, but the lawyer making it won't be thrown out of court for suggesting it :). (of course there may be something else in there that limits translation to mean what it ordinarily means- i am just saying that the quote you provided does the opposite)

kdarling
Jun 24, 2011, 09:47 AM
In any event, I assure you that the language you just cited is enough to let a patent attorney argue with a straight face that translation need not be limited to shifting of origin, and may also apply to scaling, rotation, etc.

Yep, I absolutely understood that, but I quoted it anyway because Apple is usually pretty darned good at writing up all the various embodiments that they want to cover :)

Therefore I think they were purposely avoiding talking about other types of graphics transformations than just translations. Otherwise they would have used "transformations" rather than "translations", as they have specific meanings to those of us experienced in the art, and translation is a subset of transformation.

I think they might've also been purposely avoiding stepping on, for example, Google's toes, since they already use two fingers to do something special on their maps. Otherwise the objections to this patent could be even louder.

dethmaShine
Jun 24, 2011, 04:13 PM
Ignore *LTD*, he contributes very little rational and logical thought to the forum.

Hmm...

I don't have a problem with most of comments to be honest. He does make some good points. But on other occasions, I feel like:

291017

KingCrimson
Jul 7, 2011, 06:57 PM
Of course Android has copied the hell out of the iPhone. What's interesting ot me is how much cash has HTC/Samsung racked in via their Android offerings over the last 2+ years compared to Apple. Sure they're 100% copycats but their margins are pretty thin and based on my reading of the profit reports, Apple gets like 80% of smartphone profits.

kdarling
Jul 7, 2011, 09:02 PM
As much as I don't like the idea of software patents, this is legitimate, but I'm not so certain that the patent should go to Apple.

Just the idea of using different multiples of fingers should not be patentable. There's no method involved here; it's just a gesture vocabulary.

Jeff Han, while doing research at NYU produced several multitouch prototype systems, demonstrating many of the gestures we all take for granted today. His company, Perceptive Pixel (http://www.perceptivepixel.com) produces multitouch products today. I'm not sure who shipped the first commercial product, but I'm nearly 100% certain that Han's research group was the first to invent the tech.

Han, like Apple, took advantage of today's hardware to implement old ideas.

Multitouch goes way back. Read "Multitouch Systems that I have Known and Loved (http://www.billbuxton.com/multitouchOverview.html)" and "A First Look at the iPhone Experience (http://www.asktog.com/columns/070iPhoneFirstLook.html)".

Cheers!

KingCrimson
Jul 7, 2011, 09:32 PM
Just the idea of using different multiples of fingers should not be patentable. There's no method involved here; it's just a gesture vocabulary.



Han, like Apple, took advantage of today's hardware to implement old ideas.

Multitouch goes way back. Read "Multitouch Systems that I have Known and Loved (http://www.billbuxton.com/multitouchOverview.html)" and "A First Look at the iPhone Experience (http://www.asktog.com/columns/070iPhoneFirstLook.html)".

Cheers!

But Apple was the first to patent it for tablet form factor and they should win it.

kdarling
Jul 7, 2011, 09:43 PM
But Apple was the first to patent it for tablet form factor and they should win it.

First to patent what?

Tablets have nothing to do with this thread.

This patent is about using a different number of fingers to scroll a window enclosed in a window.

h4lp m3
Jul 17, 2011, 11:29 PM
Can someone explain to me how Android can use multitouch when it's copywritten by Apple? :confused:

cmaier
Jul 17, 2011, 11:30 PM
Can someone explain to me how Android can use multitouch when it's copywritten by Apple? :confused:

1) there's a huge difference between copyright and patent
1a) this has nothing to do with copyright
2) Apple does not own the patent on multitouch

h4lp m3
Jul 19, 2011, 03:29 AM
1) there's a huge difference between copyright and patent
1a) this has nothing to do with copyright
2) Apple does not own the patent on multitouch

The title just says Apple was awarded the patent on multitouch.

cmaier
Jul 19, 2011, 08:40 AM
The title just says Apple was awarded the patent on multitouch.

This is not a journalistic organization.