Will Apple and Microsoft fight over the new iOS 5 feature?

Discussion in 'Apple, Inc and Tech Industry' started by Ashlyn, Jun 17, 2011.

  1. Ashlyn macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2011
    Location:
    San Francisco
    #1
    It’s nice to become a part of this friendly community. I am working on ProCamera – an iPhone camera app. We lately released an update containing a feature called ‘QuickFlick album access’ – people can just gesture to see their photos or videos. Amazingly, Apple announced iOS 5 with exactly the same feature. Shockingly, Microsoft claims to have a patent on it (http://www.mobilecrunch.com/2011/06/13/ios-5s-fancy-new-camera-trick-microsoft-has-a-patent-on-it/). Any thoughts on whether these two giants will fight when iOS 5 comes out this fall? And what will this mean for our tiny company and others like us?

    Ashlyn from ProCamera
     
  2. KingCrimson macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2011
    #2
    2011 = year Apple copycats everyone. :eek:
     
  3. *LTD*, Jun 18, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2011

    *LTD* macrumors G4

    *LTD*

    Joined:
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    #3
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_3 like Mac OS X; en) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8J2 Safari/6533.18.5)

    Apple announced iOS 5 on June 6th.

    Your app went live on June 7th.

    MS (as you say) appears to have a patent on this. We don't know whether Apple has a patent on this exact feature, etc. Nothing has been challenged by anyone yet.

    You took your chances. At the moment I see nothing unfair here from either side, apart from the possibility you didn't do your homework.

    Make as much money as you can in the meantime and enjoy it while it lasts. In fact, all we're talking about here is a single feature. Heck, you might even try patenting it and see what happens. ;)
     
  4. neiltc13 macrumors 68040

    neiltc13

    Joined:
    May 27, 2006
    #4
    Everything I've seen about iOS5's new camera features appear to be a direct copy of Windows Phone 7.

    - Camera access from lock screen (although Windows Phone 7 goes one better and allows camera access from sleep, because all phones have a dedicated two three state camera button)

    - Dedicated shutter button

    - Swipe back to access previously taken photos when camera is running

    - Automatic upload to iCloud/Skydrive
     
  5. *LTD*, Jun 18, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2011

    *LTD* macrumors G4

    *LTD*

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2009
    Location:
    Canada
    #5
    .I just found this:

    http://www.prweb.com/releases/2011/6/prweb8565886.htm

    QuickFlick album access is a new iOS 5 feature that will come in this fall. The ProCamera team developed this feature before Apple announced iOS 5.

    Are you sure about that? How do you know it wasn't already in development at Apple? Apparently you didn't even know MS might already have a patent on it? Did you conduct a patent search?

    This feature in your app made it into your June 7th update (ver. 3.1), a day *after* Apple showcased iOS 5.
     
  6. Ashlyn thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #6
  7. Ashlyn thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2011
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    San Francisco
    #7
    The new version of ProCamera got approved before Apple announced iOS 5, we released it to the App Store on June 7. That's all. And, the feature took the whole team several months, no one could have it done in one day I guess...
     
  8. *LTD* macrumors G4

    *LTD*

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2009
    Location:
    Canada
    #8
    You'll need to prove the timeline. All it looks like at this point is that both you and Apple were working on the same or very similar feature, and Apple had to wait until WWDC to showcase it.

    I'm not taking a side against you, you have a great app and it goes without saying that you put a lot of work into it. But all it looks like is a coincidence at this point. And what about that MS patent?

    Have you communicated your concerns to Apple? I understand that might be a risk in your view, but they *did* approve your app. Perhaps there are some differences between yours and Apple's that you haven't considered.

    I'd be interested in their response, if of course you do decide to bring it to their attention. Alternatively, are you in a position to consult a lawyer about this? Have you thought about it?
     
  9. QuarterSwede macrumors G3

    QuarterSwede

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2005
    Location:
    Colorado Springs, CO
    #9
    Although your talking about the camera, Apple has had a feature similar in the iPod app since at least iOS 4.3 (now recently discovered). From Now Playing you can swipe right to go back to the previous page without having to tap the button.
     
  10. Ashlyn thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2011
    Location:
    San Francisco
    #10
    These points are good: communicating to Apple and consulting a lawyer. Not sure what result the first one will bring but the second one won't hurt.
     

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