USPTO Preliminarily Rejects Apple's 'Pinch-to-Zoom' Patent

Discussion in ' News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Dec 19, 2012.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Another Apple patent is in the spotlight tonight, after the United States Patent and Trademark Office has preliminarily rejected all 20 claims of Patent No. 7,844,915, or the so-called "pinch to zoom" patent.

    Patent '915 deals with technology that discerns whether a user is scrolling with a single finger or accessing several touch points at once, as in a pinch-to-zoom action. Apple successfully used Patent No. '915 against Samsung in its court battle earlier this year, and 21 of 24 Samsung devices in the lawsuit were found to be infringing on the patent.

    According to The Wall Street Journal, Samsung brought the invalidation of the key patent to the court's attention in a Wednesday afternoon filing.
    Samsung has been fighting for a retrial in recent weeks, after Apple was granted more than $1 billion in damages when a jury decided that Samsung had willfully infringed on Apple's patents. Part of Patent No. '915 was an important factor in the calculation of the payment.

    On Monday, Judge Lucy Koh, who has been presiding over the Apple vs. Samsung trial denied Samsung's motion for a new trial on the basis of juror misconduct.

    As The Verge points out, however, the rejection of Patent No. '915 is preliminary and isn't yet the same as "invalidating" the patent. Apple still has the opportunity to file its counter-arguments:
    The decision comes just weeks after the USPTO preliminarily rejected Patent No. 7,479,949 or the "Steve Jobs" patent.

    Article Link: USPTO Preliminarily Rejects Apple's 'Pinch-to-Zoom' Patent
  2. gotluck macrumors 603


    Dec 8, 2011
    East Central Florida
    puts on flamesuit

    i don't think this should be a patent
  3. redshovel macrumors 6502


    Nov 19, 2007
    Pinch me to wake me up after this boring patent war is over!
  4. Konrad macrumors 6502

    Aug 26, 2009
  5. SnowLeopard OSX macrumors 6502a

    SnowLeopard OSX

    Dec 5, 2012
    No surprise here. You can't patent everything -- it eliminates too much competition.
  6. MassiveAttack macrumors 6502a

    Mar 28, 2010
    New York
  7. koban4max macrumors 68000

    Aug 23, 2011
  8. tann macrumors 68000

    Apr 15, 2010
    Nottingham, England
    Fair enough, it is an important and necessary component of a smartphones OS (used primarily for zooming in and out) and I don't see a good way around it!
  9. amptech macrumors newbie

    Dec 12, 2011
    They're totally right.... I mean, I was using pinch-to-zoom on everything before 2006. My flip phone, my XP tablet, my mini-xp tablet, my Rio MP3 player. It was getting so old by the time iPhone came out. I hope they burn. :(
  10. 2bikes macrumors 6502

    Mar 9, 2012
  11. Robincognito macrumors newbie

    Feb 5, 2011
    Thank God. We need to see end to stupid software patents like this.
  12. Stella macrumors 604


    Apr 21, 2003
    Wasn't pinch to zoom demoed in some multi-touch university research back in the 70s?

    If it were then there would be a case for prior art.
  13. arn macrumors god


    Staff Member

    Apr 9, 2001
  14. dethmaShine macrumors 68000

    Apr 13, 2010
    Into the lungs of Hell
    This reminds of

    a Slayer song: 'Piece by Piece'.

    I do think that some Apple patents are well worth it. Unlink the usual folk, I agree with the novelty of "Slide to Unlock" or the "Bounce back" ideas.

    But this was ridiculous. You can't patent a mouse. Apple should definitely be credited as one of the inventors for such a thing, but please this is ridiculous.

    But lets not forget, there are thousands of patents by Microsoft and they still file UI and software patents that are so trivial and have absolutely no novelty in them. Pinch-to-zoom is novel but I don't the patent for something like this should be awarded. It's like a patent for touching a touchscreen. Idiotic.
  15. Rogifan macrumors P6


    Nov 14, 2011
    Isn't there a back page for all this lawsuit crap? How many threads do we need that turn into arguments about who invented what (aka Apple invented nothing) and why patents suck (aka Apple is a patent troll).
  16. mentholiptus, Dec 19, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2012

    mentholiptus macrumors regular

    Sep 1, 2009
    There are hundreds of other ways to zoom in and out, but pinch to zoom is by far the best/coolest/most natural, and everyone else wants it. Apple nailed it, and no one else wants to settle for less.

    When Apple showed it for the first time, people ooh'd, ahh'd, clapped, whistled, and cheered, because it was THAT good. It had a huge impact, and it took years before anyone else had an OS that could hold a candle to iOS.

    Now, everyone who copied the original, and was late to the party, wants what Apple has. But they don't want to work for it. They just want it. They feel entitled to it. They could use sliders UI's, knob UI's, they could swipe, use a magnifying glass like Adobe, etc, but no, it has to be Apple's method, because it's established (by the iPhone) as the best.

    Lame. People say they want competition, then bitch because they've got nothing to bring to the table. They want to compete by making iPhones, rebranding them, and then pitting them against the iPhone. There's no argument that justifies anything else. It's all BS.

    Go to 33:40, and see it for the first time on any consumer device, ever:
  17. SomeDudeAsking macrumors 65816

    Nov 23, 2010
    I would like to point out that all 3 of the patents Apple is suing Samsung for in the US are in various stages of being invalidated.

    It truly boggles the mind how the incompetent US jury could think these soon to be struck, frivolous patents could be worth $1 billion.
  18. MikhailT macrumors 601

    Nov 12, 2007
    Guys, remember, none of this means anything. The Media is reporting this incorrectly and going crazy for no reasons.

    It is normal to see USPTO to reject all claims on many software patents, they do this to force the patent owners to fight harder to prove the patents should be valid. In many cases, the patents becomes re-validated and it'll become that much difficult to prove it is invalid down the line.

    As long as Apple can prove the patents are valid in the next filing, they should be okay.
  19. nagromme macrumors G5


    May 2, 2002
    Apple MAY have had to patent it defensively (so someone else didn’t copy them, patent it themselves, and sue Apple or whatever).

    But Apple didn’t invent the gesture. Maybe some behind-the-scenes specifics about it, at most, but not the general principle of using a touchscreen in that way. If the patent is too broad, then it should be canned. If that’s the case, I won’t root for Apple to win this one. (But patents are often less broad/more specific than they sound at first.)
  20. SomeDudeAsking macrumors 65816

    Nov 23, 2010
    These threads will stop when Apple stops bully suing with invalid, frivolous patents.
  21. Verbatim Cookie macrumors regular

    Mar 20, 2012
    I don't really get the patent system, but I will guess that if Apple deserves a patent and what you say is true, then the patent becomes FRAND, not invalid.
  22. SomeDudeAsking macrumors 65816

    Nov 23, 2010
    Apple did not invent pinch to zoom. Other companies did, Apple just copied it.
  23. coolfactor macrumors 68040

    Jul 29, 2002
    Vancouver, BC CANADA
    Why do you click and comment (aka complain)? Just curious. :)
  24. Renzatic Suspended


    Aug 3, 2011
    Gramps, what the hell am I paying you for?
    So cool, yet not invented by Apple in Cupertino California. I've seen pinch to zoom implemented before 2007. It was done with two index fingers, but the gesture itself and idea behind it was exactly the same. Doing it with an index finger and a thumb, the preferred iOS method, is functionally identical.

    That's the major point of this thread, not who copied who, but who invented what and owns the rights to it.
  25. Rogifan macrumors P6


    Nov 14, 2011
    Apple bullying? What are we back in high school. :rolleyes: None of these patents have actually been invalidated so...

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