December 7, 2012

Image (1) January-2007-iPhone-introduction-Steve-Jobs-shows-pinch-zoom-with-his-fingers.jpg for post 61070

In October, as pointed out in Samsung filings with U.S. District Lucy Koh, we told you that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office issued a non-final decision that declared 20 claims related to Apple’s rubber-banding patent invalid. While Samsung and Apple were back in court yesterday regarding post-trial motions, today FossPatents reported (via MacRumors) the USPTO has issued another non-final ruling declaring yet another Apple multitouch patent invalid.

This time it’s a touchscreen patent, commonly called “the Steve Jobs patent,” that courts previously deemed valid in cases against Samsung and Motorola in the past:

This week, the USPTO issued a first Office action rejecting all 20 claims of U.S. Patent No. 7,479,949 on a “touch screen device, method, and graphical user interface for determining commands by applying heuristics”, which has been referred to by many people, including Apple’s own lawyers, as “the Steve Jobs patent”.

The touchscreen heuristics ‘949 patent has also been asserted against Motorola. Judge Posner declared large parts of the patent invalid and identified only some minor potential infringement on Motorola’s part that he decided would not warrant injunctive relief even if Apple prevailed on whatever little was left of its related claims. expand full story

July 5, 2012

Reuters interviewed the U.S. judge today who dismissed Apple’s patent court case against Motorola, and the details behind the jurist’s reasoning for tossing the lawsuit are as interesting as they are controversial.

Richard Posner sits on the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago and disputes whether software and related tech industries should even have patents for their products.

“It’s not clear that we really need patents in most industries,” said Posner, referring to the slew of features in smartphones that are legally protected. “You just have this proliferation of patents. It’s a problem.”

Posner, 73, argued the pharmaceutical industry better deserved protection for its intellectual property because of the, as Reuters coined it, “enormous investment it takes to create a successful drug.” He tossed Apple’s lawsuit against Google’s Motorola Mobility last month and denied an injunction against the sale of Motorola devices using Apple’s patented technology.

The judge attributed Apple’s scramble to attack competitors allegedly using its technology to a “constant struggle for survival.”

“As in any jungle, the animals will use all the means at their disposal, all their teeth and claws that are permitted by the ecosystem,” Posner contended.

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June 22, 2012

The Verge details a U.S. federal court document regarding today’s hearing of Apple’s patent lawsuit against Motorola. The judge presiding over the case, Judge Richard Posner, has dismissed the case in its entirety. Apple’s claim against Motorola includes four patents. These patents cover wireless connection technology and user interface design. Judge Posner also dismissed the possibility of an injunction against Motorola. Earlier this month, the same judge dismissed an Apple vs. Motorola hearing, but today’s dismissal appears to be the final one regarding these four patents. Apple still has the opportunity to request an appeal. Court document embedded below: expand full story

9to5toys 

June 20, 2012

Apple in court: Apple vs Motorola, Samsung wins damages, Kodak sues

There are several reports today on Apple’s ongoing court cases with Samsung and Motorola. First, we have the latest on the United States case between Apple and Google’s Motorola Mobility with Reuters reporting on a “crucial hearing” scheduled for today:

Federal Judge Richard Posner in Chicago will hear Apple argue why it should be able to seek an order barring the sale of some Motorola phones. Posner’s decision could affect the iPhone maker’s ability to negotiate favorable licensing agreements in its legal fights against Motorola and other competitors like Samsung Electronics Co Ltd… last week Posner granted Apple’s request for a hearing on a possible injunction, and ordered both sides to submit legal arguments in advance. Those documents were filed under seal on Monday.

The last time we reported on this Apple/Samsung Galaxy case in the U.S., Apple was forced to request a separate hearing for a ban on the Galaxy S III. A trial date for Apple’s previous injunction requests for the Galaxy line is set for July 30. In its patent disputes with the company in Europe, Reuters reported today that a Dutch court in The Hague ruled Apple would have to pay damages for violating a Samsung patent with pre-iPhone 4S devices:

A court in The Hague ruled Apple had violated a Samsung patent used in some of Apple’s phones and tablet computers to connect to the Internet, and said damages should be based on certain iPhone and iPad sales in the Netherlands… Damages should be based on Dutch sales figures since August 4, 2010, which the court said was the date when Apple could have known it was violating Samsung’s patent.

FossPatents weighed in:

…there’s no question that Apple is ready, willing and able to pay a FRAND royalty rate. It just didn’t want Samsung to win an injunction, or pay an excessive rate. Court documents say that Apple asked Samsung half a dozen times (!) to quote a FRAND rate before the 2.4% demand, which the court considered outrageous, was made… Considering the parameters and circumstances I just described, Samsung will be lucky to even recover its attorneys’ fees with this. The dispute will continue.

In other Apple court news, bankrupt Kodak is suing the company this week for wrongly claiming ownership of 10 patents and “interfering with plans to sell a large patent portfolio.” Reuters explained:

In a lawsuit filed on Monday in U.S. bankruptcy court in Manhattan, Kodak said Apple, the largest U.S. company by market value, wrongly claims to own 10 patents arising from work that the companies did together in the early 1990s… Kodak said Apple is the largest infringer of patents in that portfolio, and also a potential purchaser of those patents… “Apple’s strategy has been to use its substantial cash position to delay as long as possible the payment of royalties to Kodak” and interfere with the sale, Kodak said.

June 7, 2012

Judge dismisses Apple vs. Motorola patent trial, ‘neither parties entitled to damages’

Andrew Harris of Bloomberg:

U.S. Judge Richard A. Posner in Chicago today rejected each side’s damages claims at what was to be the last hearing before a June 11 trial. Posner later said he wouldn’t hold a hearing on Apple’s request for an order blocking alleged Motorola Mobility infringement.

May 1, 2012

Apple requests to obscure Samsung logos on courtroom displays

With litigation between the two companies in California still underway and a trial date set for July 30, FOSS Patents today reported Apple and Samsung filed a joint statement with Judge Lucy Koh outlining the “evidence-related issues” they hope to discuss in the months leading up to trial. Perhaps the most interesting piece of information in the filing is a request from Apple to obscure Samsung’s logo on televisions and video displays being used in the U.S. District Court in California where the case is being held.

Foss Patents also explained that Apple is requesting to exclude former CEO’s Steve Jobs quotes from Walter Isaacson’s biography and “any reference to working conditions in China”:

Apple wants the court to exclude any “argument or evidence regarding statements attributed to Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson”. This one obviously relates to the “thermonuclear war” quote and similar rhetoric… Apple furthermore wants the court to exclude “any reference to working conditions in China”.

As for what Samsung is requesting…

Samsung wants the court to exclude “Apple related blogs, and articles by non-expert newspaper reporters, regarding any assessment of Apple and Samsung and/or their products”… Samsung wants the court to strike the “opinions and testimony of Henry Urbach, Apple’s expert on the alleged cultural significance of Apple”. Samsung argues that “[t]he ‘cultural significance’ of Apple’s designs and Apple’s ‘commitment to design’ are not at issue in this litigation”

9to5google 

March 23, 2012

As we reported earlier this month, Apple was set to appeal a $1.2 million fine imposed by Italian anti-trust authorities Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato. The authorities argued Apple is misleading consumers by selling its one-year AppleCare warranties without informing customers of a two-year warranty mandatory by European Union law. Apple officially lost the appeal in court this week, which forced the company to pay the €900,00 fine and alter its AppleCare policies to properly inform consumers going forward. Apple can still appeal the decision, but consumer groups from 10 other countries are also requesting Apple change its policies—indicating this could soon be EU-wide. (via Repubblica.it)

Following the Path incident, a letter sent from lawmakers to Apple in February requested information on how the company collects personal data. The two congressional representatives behind the letter, Henry A. Waxman and G. K. Butterfield, sent letters to 34 app developers requesting similar information. One of the letters was sent to Tim Cook and Apple about the “Find My Friends” app. The letters are requesting that developers answer questions about their privacy policies and how they handle user data. In response to Path, Apple already confirmed, “Any app wishing to access contact data will require explicit user approval in a future software release.”

Earlier this month, we reported that U.S. Circuit Judge Richard A. Posner ruled in favor of Apple’s request to view documents related to the development of Android and the Google/Motorola acquisition. Apple claimed, “The Android/Motorola acquisition discovery is highly relevant to Apple’s claims and defenses.” According to Bloomberg, Apple told the courts last week that Motorola has yet to fulfill the original request, but Judge Posner denied Apple’s request this week and said, “Motorola’s objections are persuasive.” Two patent infringement-related trials between Apple and Motorola are set for June, and Posner warns Apple will have to “narrow its request to a manageable and particularized set of documents” for any future production of data requests. expand full story

March 6, 2012

Apple’s latest cunning move in its Holy Crusade against Android involves getting a court order to force Google, the maker of Android software, to produce documents detailing the Android roadmap and its proposed $12.5 billion acquisition of handset maker Motorola Mobility. It was not immediately clear what data Apple was exactly seeking to uncover. This is notable, because Apple is actually going after Google with this request. It is the first direct in the ongoing legal war considering Apple fought Google by proxy in the past.

According to Bloomberg, U.S. Circuit Judge Richard A. Posner ruled yesterday based on a patent lawsuit Apple filed in 2010 against Motorola that both Motorola and Google must spill relevant information to Apple, as “the Android/Motorola acquisition discovery is highly relevant to Apple’s claims and defenses.” Motorola, of course, opposed the request, offering the following argument.

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December 19, 2010

The 4th generation of arguably the most popular iPhone music game has just hit the App Store: Tap Tap Revenge 4. For those not familiar, Tap Tap Revenge was around long before the App Store. It was the premier iPhone game on the jailbroken app market. Since then it brought in Tapulous over a million dollars a month and now Tapulous is owned by Disney. Going back to Tap Tap Revenge 4 the new, free app brings loads of improvements and new features.

First, the new version brings over 100 free tracks to the table. These include songs from popular artists/bands like Lady Gaga, Linkin Park, and My Chemical Romance. (List of several more popular artists in TTR4 is after the break.) TTR4 introduces a “like” button which when pushed displays an avatar showing who else likes the respective track. Tapulous has also done some iOS 4 housekeeping by adding both Game Center and Retina Display support.

Some new social features are now present such as the ability to share scores via Twitter, Facebook, and e-mail. Perhaps the most impressive feature in the new game is the “Arcade Mode.” This new mode presents new tapping obstacles which makes the game even more challenging and when coupled with the new up-to-the-minute global leader boards, the game should be all the more fun. Let us know how you like it all in the comments. Tap Tap Revenge 4 is now free on the iTunes App Store and you can check out some screenshots after the break.

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electrek 
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