Apple vs. Samsung: Royalties

Samsung might have to pay even more for infringing Apple patents

November 26th at 8:00 PM

Samsung might have to pay even more for infringing Apple patents

Even though Samsung and Apple have settled their international patent disputes, the lawsuits in the U.S. are far from being a distant memory. Apple has largely won the two major trials in American courts, with Samsung having to pay more than $1 billion in combined damages; though both sides have appealed various verdicts in these trials.

Following the second, less-successful, win against Samsung, Apple has also asked the court to rule in its favor regarding ongoing royalties for Samsung products found to infringe three specific patents that a jury already found to have been infringed by older Samsung devices. More →

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Samsung Apple Patent Dispute

Judge rules Samsung didn’t willfully infringe on Apple patents, denies additional compensation

January 30th at 8:16 AM

Judge rules Samsung didn’t willfully infringe on Apple patents, denies additional compensation

Losing a $1 billion patent verdict is never fun, but Samsung (005930) can now at least look on the bright side: At least it wasn’t a $1.5 billion verdict. The Verge reports that Judge Lucy Koh, who oversaw this past summer’s Samsung-Apple (AAPL) patent trial, has ruled that Samsung did not willfully infringe on Apple’s patents and that Apple is not owed any additional compensation. In her ruling, Koh said that Apple had failed to prove the “objectively high likelihood that its [Samsung’s] actions constituted infringement of a valid patent,” since Samsung showed that it had reason to believe that some of Apple’s patents were invalid and thus couldn’t be used in a suit against the company.

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U.K. Judge clears HTC phones of infringing on Apple patents

July 4th at 9:50 AM

U.K. Judge clears HTC phones of infringing on Apple patents

HTC Cleared Apple Patents

U.K. Judge Christopher Floyd ruled on Wednesday that HTC’s phones do not infringe on Apple’s patents, Bloomberg reports. The patents, which include Apple’s well known slide-to-unlock patent, cover various functions involving touchscreens on mobile devices. “Competition is healthy, but competitors should create their own original technology, not steal ours,” Apple told Bloomberg in a statement. An HTC spokesperson told reporters that while HTC is happy with the ruling, “we remain disappointed that Apple continues to favor competition in the courtroom over competition in the marketplace.” More →

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Samsung sues Australian patent commissioner to force judicial review of Apple patents

June 8th at 7:20 PM

Samsung sues Australian patent commissioner to force judicial review of Apple patents

Apple Samsung Patent Dispute

Samsung sued the Australian patent commissioner in an Australian Federal Court late last month in an attempt to force a judicial review of four key patents that were “inappropriately” granted to Apple between 2009 and 2010. The South Korean electronics giant has been in an ongoing, high-profile dispute with Apple for nearly a year. Both companies have sought injunctions against the other in an attempt to block device sales, and Samsung now claims the patents in question should not have been granted because they were duplicates of innovation patents that had already been issued by the commissioner under Australia’s patent system, iTnews reported. The company hopes the review will nullify the four patents, which would lead to a full dismissal of Apple’s case against the Galaxy Tab tablet. A hearing is scheduled for June 25th. More →

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Apple patents suggest Thunderbolt coming to iOS devices

January 5th at 11:20 AM

Apple patents suggest Thunderbolt coming to iOS devices

The United States Patent and Trademark Office recently published three Thunderbolt related patents that suggest Apple may have plans to build Intel’s Thunderbolt connections into its iOS devices. As Patently Apple points out, Apple may build its own cabling technology that gives it exclusive rights to how Thunderbolt technology might be built into portable devices. Thunderbolt ports would allow for faster data transfers on the iPad, iPhone and iPod touch, as well as shorter charging times. One of Apple’s more revealing patents describes stronger Thunderbolt cables that could handle greater amounts of data more efficiently and without overheating. Apple says in its patent that the Thunderbolt connections “may be provided between a portable media player and a display, a computer and a portable media player, or between other types of devices.” Apple currently has a number of devices, including displays and computers, with Thunderbolt ports. The company does not yet offer a portable device with the I/O option, however. More →

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Judge says Samsung tablet infringes Apple patents, taunts Samsung attorney

October 14th at 9:00 AM

Judge says Samsung tablet infringes Apple patents, taunts Samsung attorney

United States District Judge Lucy Koh on Thursday ruled that Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet does infringe on multiple Apple patents. Judge Koh failed to order an injunction preventing the sale of the tablet in the U.S. however, stating that Apple must first establish the validity of the patents in question. According to the judge, Apple may have difficulty doing so, but she did take extra care to point out how similar Samsung’s tablet is to the iPad. Read on for more. More →

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Judge finds HTC guilty of infringing two Apple patents; could mean trouble for Android [updated]

July 16th at 8:01 AM

Judge finds HTC guilty of infringing two Apple patents; could mean trouble for Android [updated]

A judge with the U.S. International Trade Commission on Friday ruled that HTC’s Android phones infringe on two of ten Apple patents covered in a complaint filed by the Cupertino-based company last year. “We can sit by and watch competitors steal our patented inventions, or we can do something about it. We’ve decided to do something about it,” Apple CEO Steve Jobs said in a statement at that time. “We think competition is healthy, but competitors should create their own original technology, not steal ours.” The ITC’s decision is an initial determination however, and it will now need to be reviewed by a six-member Commission. Apple’s complaint in this case covered a total of ten patents, and the two HTC has been determined to be infringing are numbered 5,946,647 and 6,343,263. These patents cover a “system and method for performing an action on a structure in computer-generated data,” and a “real-time signal processing system for serially transmitted data,” respectively. Both patents are said to be hugely important to the core Android OS, and if upheld, the ruling could be incredibly damaging to the rest of Google’s Android partners. Apple is also in the process of suing Motorola and other Android partners for infringing on these and other patents. HTC has already stated that it plans to appeal the ITC’s determination, telling reporters it will “vigorously fight” the ruling. A final determination in the case is due on December 6th, 2011.

UPDATE: HTC has issued a response to the ITC’s judgement, which can now be read below in its entirety. More →

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Apple patents keyboard design with air-driven tactile feedback

May 12th at 7:31 PM

Apple patents keyboard design with air-driven tactile feedback

A patent filing from Apple has sparked rumors of a new, low-profile keyboard. Designed with perforated keys, the input device would provide its end-user with tactile feedback by forcing air through the perforations in the key-tops. According to a report by Patently Apple, the “Advanced Keyboard Feedback System” will pair the punctured keys with a pressure and proximity sensor. When a user’s finger is detected to be just above the key in question, a light stream of air will be emitted to provide pre-press feedback. “As a twist to this patent, Apple goes on to describe that flowing of air could also be implemented in a virtual keyboard, wherein each key location is merely a defined region on a solid surface, where contact with that surface region will generate a defined input signal,” reads the report. The implication there being that Apple could include this technology on touchscreen devices like the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. The problem Apple is trying to solve is delivering adequate input-feedback on low-profile keyboards while continuing to make thinner and lighter keyboards — usually, feedback is provided by the downward travel of a depressed key. Apple is known for patenting dozens of technologies that never make it on to mainstream products; it is unclear if this filing falls into that category as well. More →

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New Apple patents include tactile/haptic feedback, fingerprint ID and RFID tag readers

July 2nd at 10:00 AM

New Apple patents include tactile/haptic feedback, fingerprint ID and RFID tag readers

A trio of Apple patent applications unearthed this morning may help shed some light on future features and functionality headed to a new crop of iPhones. Then again we all know how easy it is for patents to lead absolutely nowhere. The first and most notable of the bunch is a haptic feedback concept employing a “grid of piezoelectronic actuators” that combine to form a fully tactile touchscreen. In theory, the device could vibrate these actuators in different combinations and at different frequencies to provide a variety of tactile responses. Interesting as it may be, this isn’t the first apple patent to cover a haptic feedback solution for a touchscreen — another notable concept came in late 2007 and has yet to bear fruit. At the same time, it’s good to see that Apple recognizes the downsides of touchscreen-only devices and is working on creative solutions for the problem. From the application:

However, one of a touchscreen’s biggest advantages (i.e., the ability to utilize the same physical space for different functions) is also one of a touchscreen’s biggest disadvantages. When the user is unable to view the display (because the user is occupied with other tasks), the user can only feel the smooth hard surface of the touchscreen, regardless of the shape, size and location of the virtual buttons and/or other display elements. This makes it difficult for users to find icons, hyperlinks, textboxes or other user-selectable input elements that are being displayed, if any are even being displayed, without looking at the display.

More →

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iPhone AR Apple Maps

Apple just dropped a big clue about its first AR project

November 8th at 6:03 PM

Apple just dropped a big clue about its first AR project

Niantic’s Pokemon Go mobile game is the easiest augmented reality experience that you can try to understand what the whole AR fuss is about. You basically have a digital layer that’s projected on top of your surroundings, as seen through your phone’s camera. The digital information on the screen changes depending on where you are. And this type of technology has great potential, far beyond what a mobile game can offer.

Apple is one of the companies that’s expected to release various AR projects in the future. Tim Cook has often hinted that AR is going to be big for the company, even though the CEO never made any announcements. The first AR app coming out of Apple HQ may be a redesigned Apple Maps application that uses AR to display location information on top of the real-world. More →

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iPhone 8 Concept

Apple might actually make a foldable iPhone one day

November 1st at 5:18 PM

Apple might actually make a foldable iPhone one day

Apple files for patents all the time, and mostly, it means nothing. It just means that one of Apple’s engineers had an idea smart enough to be worth protecting. It also means that Apple has a lot of lawyers, and at least one guy who is good at plain white drawings in pencil.

But when the same concept pops up again and again in different patents, you have to assume that Apple is serious. And that’s how we get to the foldable iPhone.

More →

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Galaxy S8 vs. iPhone 8

Galaxy S8 tipped to beat the iPhone 8 in the next-gen smartphone design race

October 26th at 10:27 AM

Galaxy S8 tipped to beat the iPhone 8 in the next-gen smartphone design race

Multiple reports backed by various Apple patents have suggested that the iPhone of the future will kill the home button without ditching its features. And now that future is closer than ever, as the iPhone 8 is rumored to be the first iPhone to lose the iconic iPhone home button. However, Samsung is also pulling a similar move, and the Galaxy S8 that’s due at least six months before the iPhone 8 is already tipped to “steal” the exciting new iPhone feature. More →

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iPhone 8 Rumors

More proof the iPhone 8 is getting the huge design overhaul we all want

October 11th at 12:33 PM

More proof the iPhone 8 is getting the huge design overhaul we all want

Next year’s iPhone may be called the iPhone 8, recent reports have suggested, and the handset is expected to feature a face that is almost entirely taken up by the display, according to sources familiar with Apple’s plans. There’s plenty of “proof” to support the idea that the home button is going away — well, it’s going to be relocated — but until today there was no evidence that the top bezel of the handset would also be removed. More →

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