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Topic # 92194 28-Oct-2011 15:29
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apple have now been granted the patent of using a gesture to unlock a screen.  Opens the way for them to sue virtually every manufacturer now. Just getting rediculous all these patents




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  Reply # 538774 28-Oct-2011 15:51
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Lol patents are getting ridiculous i agree. All its done in the mobile sphere is everyone is sueing everyone so all lose out while the lawyers rack it in





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  Reply # 538778 28-Oct-2011 16:03
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USA will be far better off getting rid of 95% of the system while there is still some advantage to China and India for agreeing with that change.

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  Reply # 538807 28-Oct-2011 17:28
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Hang on a minute, my old Windows Mobile 6.5 phone uses a gesture to unlock the screen. Admittedly it is at the top of the screen, not the bottom Smile

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  Reply # 538808 28-Oct-2011 17:29
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this is a perfectly reasonable patent application, not frivilous at all. they invented a really useful *new* way to do something, and patented it. Why wouldnt they patent it?

If every idea and market differentiator you had could be ripped off by companies who dont spend on R&D, why would you spend money on these things?


P.s. I *don't* own an iphone, ipad _or_ apple device of any sort. So i'm not providing this opinion as a fanboy...




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  Reply # 538811 28-Oct-2011 17:41
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If it really was genuinely something unique that they patented then I don't have a problem with it, no doubt the people complaining use Android...

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  Reply # 538816 28-Oct-2011 17:50
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allan: Hang on a minute, my old Windows Mobile 6.5 phone uses a gesture to unlock the screen. Admittedly it is at the top of the screen, not the bottom

The patent was filed in December 2005, just granted today. Even so there are prior art examples and no doubt more will be found.

regs: this is a perfectly reasonable patent application, not frivilous at all. they invented a really useful *new* way to do something, and patented it. Why wouldnt they patent it?

'Designed' rather than invented would be more accurate in this case. Patents are just over the top for this kind of thing. At the very least the lifetime should be much shorter.


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  Reply # 538828 28-Oct-2011 18:08
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So since the latest Android version demonstrated a 'face unlock' I can assume i-Products won't be doing the same. Or have Apple patented your face as well? I know laptops have had face recognition and fingerprint technology for a while.
What I find interesting is the juxtaposition of the late Mr Jobs where on one hand he is quoted as saying he will go after Android for theft (of ideas), and then being quoted (in autobiography) as saying "good artists copy, great artists steal". I'll need to look up what year movies like 'Minority Report' were made, because that uses gestures to open and control IT (wouldn't want poor old Tom to get sued) :/




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  Reply # 538831 28-Oct-2011 18:13
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Minority Report was 2002

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  Reply # 538832 28-Oct-2011 18:19

Regs: this is a perfectly reasonable patent application, not frivilous at all. they invented a really useful *new* way to do something, and patented it. Why wouldnt they patent it?

If every idea and market differentiator you had could be ripped off by companies who dont spend on R&D, why would you spend money on these things?


P.s. I *don't* own an iphone, ipad _or_ apple device of any sort. So i'm not providing this opinion as a fanboy...



I've seen that slide to unlock thing before... I wonder if they patented this.





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  Reply # 538859 28-Oct-2011 19:39
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ok, the hardware slide to unlock doesnt really count. for one its not a fingertip gesture on a touch screen. if you want to put an actual chain on your android or windows mobile phone, go for it :)

as for the "prior art", i havent seen any examples that pre-date apples patent?

the windows mobile one was well after that, and even after the iphone.




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  Reply # 538860 28-Oct-2011 19:56

Regs: ok, the hardware slide to unlock doesnt really count. for one its not a fingertip gesture on a touch screen. if you want to put an actual chain on your android or windows mobile phone, go for it :)

as for the "prior art", i havent seen any examples that pre-date apples patent?

the windows mobile one was well after that, and even after the iphone.


Apple often don't invent products anyway. They just get a product that already exists and turns it into a success, by making it more usable and have the best marketing team.

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  Reply # 538870 28-Oct-2011 20:18
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In a GUI design sense, I can see Jobs's point about many aspects of Android being 'stolen' from Apple. But is that really any different to fashion houses coming up with similar features? I just don't think this kind of thing is what the patent system should be used for.

Regs: as for the "prior art", i havent seen any examples that pre-date apples patent?

the windows mobile one was well after that, and even after the iphone.

A Dutch court already ruled against Apple (vs Samsung) on the basis of prior art:

http://fosspatents.blogspot.com/2011/08/dutch-judge-considers-apples-slide-to.html

This ruling was on a similar patent, not the new one which was granted today. Even so, it is very likely Samsung will make the same case again if challenged. The legal situation in the States may be very different. Yet another reason why the system should be reformed.

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  Reply # 539099 29-Oct-2011 21:47
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Regs: 

If every idea and market differentiator you had could be ripped off by companies who dont spend on R&D, why would you spend money on these things?



Companies would have to compete on service, style and implementation of ideas... how terrible.. oh wait.. that's how the free market is supposed to work.

Smartphones are implementations of thousands of ideas/inventions. being able to use a single patent to stifle competitors is absurd.

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  Reply # 539108 29-Oct-2011 22:20
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Good comments, both for and against this patent fiasco.

But I feel that there needs to be perpsective.

Firstly, this is patent law. if you need to go after someone, go after the lawmakers, i.e, the Parliaments.

Secondly, Google is paying Microsoft and another player (can't recall who), what will be $5 to $15 per handset for patent use. No big news article on that or big issues in the forum media. Why go after Apple? Its a law, so take it up with the lawmakers.

Thirdly, patents are there to protect the creator of the "specific" intellectual law that relates to what they invented, or created. Thats fair. For a period. If Google had implementetd 3 patents, that were then used by the Apples or Microsofts of this world, would you still have the same argument, that is "thats bad, ban patents"???? I think not.

All this will come out in the wash, at some point, probably sooner that later, it will be resolved, royalties will be paid for a limited period for these design issues then it will be free. Smartphone and handheld technology is going through a growth spurt, that will soon mature. Apple was first into the modern consumer market, and Android has been more than a worthy rival, both of which will be joined by Microsoft. What that tells me, is that us consumers will benefit by the competition for the smartphone OS dollar.


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  Reply # 539113 29-Oct-2011 22:34
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tdgeek: 

Firstly, this is patent law. if you need to go after someone, go after the lawmakers, i.e, the Parliaments.



No software patents in NZ, you can read a bit on the NZ background on this great wiki
http://en.swpat.org/wiki/New_Zealand 

Unfortunately we can't do anything directly about how bad the US or EU systems are.

tdgeek: 

Secondly, Google is paying Microsoft and another player (can't recall who), what will be $5 to $15 per handset for patent use. No big news article on that or big issues in the forum media. Why go after Apple? Its a law, so take it up with the lawmakers.



I am pretty sure only some handset manufacturer's are paying royalties for Android devices to Microsoft eg: HTC.

I don't believe Google is paying Microsoft directly.

Sad day when it's cheaper to pay off another company than fight a long legal battle over some minor invention which is 1/1000th of the device you are selling.

tdgeek: 

Thirdly, patents are there to protect the creator of the "specific" intellectual law that relates to what they invented, or created. Thats fair. For a period. If Google had implementetd 3 patents, that were then used by the Apples or Microsofts of this world, would you still have the same argument, that is "thats bad, ban patents"???? I think not.



Yes, if Google was abusing patent's I would also be annoyed at them also. I am equally annoyed at patent troll shell companies in the US that sue Apple, Microsoft, Google etc.

tdgeek: 

All this will come out in the wash, at some point, probably sooner that later, it will be resolved, royalties will be paid for a limited period for these design issues then it will be free. Smartphone and handheld technology is going through a growth spurt, that will soon mature. Apple was first into the modern consumer market, and Android has been more than a worthy rival, both of which will be joined by Microsoft. What that tells me, is that us consumers will benefit by the competition for the smartphone OS dollar.



Unfortunately it probably won't, the US political system depends on campaigns being funded by lobby groups.. nothing will change there. They can't even balance their budget let alone look at reforming patent law which has become seriously mis-used in the digital/internet age.

Smartphones could be a lot cheaper without all this money being spent on lawyers and the billions being spent on buying up "defensive" patents.

The best we can hope for is the big players do a cross licensing deal like AMD, Intel, Nvidia do.  However that doesn't stop other smaller "patent troll" companies like Intellectual Ventures etc from picking up patents from old companies and using them against the big players.

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