The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of twenty-five newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In today's first granted patent report we focus entirely on a single patent that represents another major iPhone and iOS interface victory for Apple. Some may be bored to hear about it, many will moan, groan and shout that the patent system is broken because of it. Yet to Apple's legal team, it's simply music to their ears. Apple reinvented the smartphone, and today they get another patent victory to celebrate that fact. Wherever you are Steve, Cheers!
Apple Wins Patent iPhone and GUI for Displaying Electronic Lists & Documents
Apple has received a Granted Patent relating to the iPhone's graphical user interface for displaying electronic lists and documents. Prior to the iPhone debut in 2007, smartphones weren't all that smart. These older styled smartphones depended upon physical hard keys and buttons and required users to remember extremely complex menu systems and key-sequences to access these menus. Due to the use of physical buttons, the displays on these smartphones were tiny, crowded and confusing to use. Viewing documents and accessing the internet wasn't really an option.
Apple's iPhone truly reinvented the smartphone and Apple's granted patent reflects the broad range of graphical user interface innovations that they brought to market. Apple's patent covers UI modules covering blogging, email, telephone, camera, video player, calendar, browser, widgets, search, notes, maps and more importantly, a multi-touch interface.
Apple's patent also covers the iPhone as a multifunctional and multi-touch device that includes multiple programs, a virtual keyboard and so much more. Yet like all granted patents, it comes down to its claims. Apple's patent presents 30 patent claims and below we list their first claim as follows:
1. A method, comprising: at a portable multifunction device with a touch screen display: displaying a portion of an electronic document on the touch screen display, wherein the displayed portion of the electronic document has a vertical position in the electronic document; displaying a vertical bar on top of the displayed portion of the electronic document, the vertical bar displayed proximate to a vertical edge of the displayed portion of the electronic document, wherein: the vertical bar has a vertical position on top of the displayed portion of the electronic document that corresponds to the vertical position in the electronic document of the displayed portion of the electronic document; and the vertical bar is not a scroll bar; detecting a movement of an object in a direction on the displayed portion of the electronic document; in response to detecting the movement: scrolling the electronic document displayed on the touch screen display in the direction of movement of the object so that a new portion of the electronic document is displayed, moving the vertical bar to a new vertical position such that the new vertical position corresponds to the vertical position in the electronic document of the displayed new portion of the electronic document, and maintaining the vertical bar proximate to the vertical edge of the displayed portion of the electronic document; and in response to a predetermined condition being met, ceasing to display the vertical bar while continuing to display the displayed portion of the electronic document, wherein the displayed portion of the electronic document has a vertical extent that is less than a vertical extent of the electronic document.
Today, Apple is embroiled in a series of lawsuits against Samsung, HTC and others over many aspects of the iPhone, iPad and iOS features. In 2007, Samsung, HTC, Google and all others in the industry didn't have a smartphone with the likes of Apple's iPhone features. They didn't have the solutions that Apple eloquently brought to market to make a smartphone truly smart. Apple carefully and meticulously crafted a full end-to-end smartphone solution. So when the copycat's and their followers whine in public and on blogs that Apple should learn to compete instead of initiate litigation – I bowl over with laughter.
Apple's vision for a revolutionary smartphone reinvented the whole smartphone category from top to bottom and the only way for Apple's competitors to compete with them was to copy their technology and methodologies knowing full well that Apple had protected the iPhone with over 200 patents out of the starting gate. Today, Apple has won yet another important patent and the whiners are bound to squeal all over again. What's new?
Apple credits Senior VP of iPhone Software Scott Forstall, Henri Lamiraux, Andrew Platzer, Michael Matas and Imran Chaudhri as the inventors of granted patent 8,223,134 which was originally filed in Q1 2007. Apple refilled their application in March of this year.
Over and above the granted patent that we specifically reported on above, we present you with a number of links to other granted patents in our Patent Round-Up that Apple received today:
8,225,228 Collaborative media production
8,225,208 Interactive frames for images and videos displayed in a presentation application
8,225,181 Efficient re-read operations from memory devices
8,225,121 Forced idle of a data processing system
8,225,100 Hash functions using recurrency and arithmetic
8,225,079 Accelerating system boot using a set of control data recorded by operating system during a first OS boot
8,225,061 Method and apparatus for protected content data processing
8,225,035 Systems and methods for operating a disk drive
8,224,972 Invitation to bind to a device
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Patently Apple presents only a brief summary of granted patents with associated graphics for journalistic news purposes as each Granted Patent is revealed by the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. Readers are cautioned that the full text of any Granted Patent should be read in its entirety for full details. About Comments: Patently Apple reserves the right to post, dismiss or edit comments.
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Sites Covering our Original Report
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Forbes, CNN's Fortune Apple 2.0, 01net France, Slashdot, Chip Online Germany, Futurezone Austria, TechnoBuffalo, Macmais Brazil, Welt Online Germany, Android Authority, The Mac Observer, iMore, Celularis Spanish, Grupo Android Spanish, iLounge, TechRadar, TUAW, El Androide Libre Spanish, Tom's Hardware Italy, iTopnews Germany, Enter Columbia, Jablickar Czech Republic, One More Thing Netherlands, Slate, Kaldata Bulgaria, MacPrime Switzerland, Tech Bang China, Xataka Android Spanish, ABC Spain, and more.
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