Apple loses 'unlocking' patent
Fin24/ AP - Apr 8th, 07:55
Munich - Apple has lost its patent protection in Germany for "slide to unlock," one of the most familiar features of its iPhones and iPads, with a court ruling that it was not a solution to something that had previously been a technical problem.
The decision, which was first reported on Friday, was handed down the previous day by the Federal Patent Court in Munich. It invalidated all of Apple's claims for the method of unlocking the screensaver by pushing a slider-button across the screen to the right, which has been part of the iPhone since it first arrived on the market in 2007.
Judges ruled that "unlocking a device by performing gestures on an unlock image" was unpatentable as granted, and that none of the 14 amendments proposed by Apple could salvage the patent.
Apple has been at war with other companies over the web of worldwide patents that make it difficult for each maker of smart-phones and tablet computers to copy one another's interfaces.
Samsung and Motorola challenged the Apple's European patent 1964022 and the court declared it invalid, ruling that it was not a technical innovation entitled to protection. Apple is entitled to appeal.
Patent law requires that technical innovations solve technical problems. Other manufacturers have devised their own ways to unlock screens and have skirted their way around the Apple-style slide to unlock.
HTC CEO wants to claw back smartphone market share
23/10/2013 - 10:30
HTC Corp’s chief executive has handed some duties to the company’s chairwoman as the smartphone maker struggles to claw back market share from Apple Inc and Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, the Financial Times reported.
Samsung offers to end patent disputes
18/10/2013 - 08:53
Samsung Electronics has offered to stop taking rivals such as Apple to court in Europe over patent disputes in order to end an antitrust investigation, European Union regulators said on Thursday.
Apple unseats Coca-Cola as 'best brand'
07/10/2013 - 11:03
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Samsung sees TV market recovery
06/09/2013 - 11:04
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Panasonic pulls out of smartphone business
29/08/2013 - 10:56
Panasonic Corp is finalizing plans to pull out of the consumer smartphone business in Japan and has approached potential buyers for its cellular base station business, the Nikkei reported.