The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 39 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. Our report covers three new multi-touch patents, Aperture's 2D Slider Control, a few major design patents wins for the iPhone 5 and Lightning connector and others. Our report closes out by presenting you with a list of the remaining thirty patents that were granted to Apple today.
Apple Granted 3 New Multi-Touch Related Patents
Apple has been granted 3 new multi-touch related patents. The patents generally cover apparatus and methods for simultaneously tracking multiple finger and palm contacts as hands approach, touch and slide across a proximity-sensing, multi-touch surface. Identification and classification of intuitive hand configurations and motions enables unprecedented integration of typing, resting, pointing, scrolling, 3D manipulation and handwriting into a versatile, ergonomic computer input device.
The three newly granted patents include: (1) Identifying contacts on a touch surface (8,466,883); (2) Contact tracking and identification module for touch sensing (8,466,881); and (3) Multi-touch contact motion extraction (8,466,880)
All three granted patents are highly detailed yet share the same patent figures and summaries. The patents are only distinguishable by their particular patent claims. For instance, Apple's patent '883 presents 45 claims, patent '881 presents 66 claims while the last patent '880 presents 63 claims. Below are the noted first Patent Claims of each of the newly granted patents to illustrate their uniqueness:
Patent 8,466,883: A method of input of a computing system including a touch sensing surface, the method comprising: obtaining touch sensing information of a scan of the touch sensing surface; determining, based on the touch sensing information of the scan, contact information of a set of one or more contacts, each contact corresponding to a touch object on or near the surface; determining, based on the contact information, a first orientation of a first contact of the set; obtaining touch sensing information of another scan of the touch sensing surface; determining, based on the touch sensing information of the other scan, a second orientation of the first contact; determining a rotation of the first contact based on the first orientation and the second orientation; and generating input of the computing system based on the first orientation, including generating the input based on the rotation.
Patent 8,466,881: A method for providing input to a computing device having an associated touch sensitive surface, the method comprising: obtaining tracking information of a plurality of contacts, each contact corresponding to a touch object being tracked on or near the touch sensitive surface, the tracking information including motion information of individual contacts within the plurality of contacts; determining a first component of motion of the plurality of contacts, the first component of motion being based on the motion information of each contact in a first set of one or more contacts of the plurality of contacts; generating a first input of the computing device based on the first component of motion of the plurality of contacts; and generating a second input of the computing device based on the motion information of each contact of a second set of one or more contacts of the plurality of contacts, wherein at least a portion of the generating of the first input is concurrent with at least a portion of the generating of the second input.
Patent 8,466,880: A method for generating control signals based on contacts of a touch sensing surface, each contact having multiple degrees of freedom of an associated touch object on or near the touch sensing surface, the method comprising: obtaining tracking information of a plurality of contacts, the contacts corresponding to touch objects on or near the touch sensing surface; computing, based on the tracking information, motion information of the plurality of contacts, the motion information including a first component of motion that is one of translation motion, rotational motion, and scaling motion, and a second component of motion that is a different one of translation motion, rotational motion, and scaling motion than the first component of motion; modifying the motion information to obtain modified motion information, wherein the modifying includes downscaling the second component of motion relative to the first component of motion; and transmitting the modified motion information as a control signal of an electronic or electro-mechanical device.
Apple credits Wayne Westerman and John Elias as the inventors of all 3 granted patents which were originally filed between December 2008 and May 2009 and published today by the US Patent and Trademark Office.
Apple Granted Patent for Final Cut Pro, Aperture 2D Slider Control
Apple has been granted a patent today for their invention relating to the 2D Slider Control found in apps such as Final Cut Pro and Aperture. The GUI includes a contiguous two-dimensional sliding region for defining several values. The GUI also includes several sliders for moving within the sliding region. Each slider selects one or more values from the several values based on a position of the slider within the sliding region. The selected values are parameters for controlling one or more operations of the application.
As described above by reference to FIG. 6, some embodiments of the two-dimensional slider control are for performing image processing operations. In some embodiments, a similar two-dimensional slider control can be used to perform color correction operations in a media editing application such as Final Cut Pro, Aperture and iPhoto.
Apple credits Peter Warner, Andrew Bryant, James Arndt, Olivier Fedkiw and Ryan Gallagher as the inventors of this granted patent 8,468,465 which was originally filed in Q3 2010.
Apple Granted Design Patents for the iPhone 5, the new Lightning Connector & More
Apple has been granted six design patents today covering the iPhone 5, the new Lightning Connector, Cinema Display and more.
Apple credits VP Industrial Design Jonathan Ive and team members Jody Akana, Bartley Andre, Jeremy Bataillou, Daniel Coster, Daniele De Iuliis, Evans Hankey, Julian Hoenig, Richard Howarth, Duncan Kerr, Shin Nishibori, Matthew Dean Rohrbach, Peter Russell-Clarke, Christopher Stringer, Eugene Whang and Rico Zorkendorfer as the inventors of Granted Patent D684,571 originally filed in Q3 2012.
As noted below, Apple was also granted design wins covering their new Lightning connector that was first introduced with the iPhone 5 (D684,539) and the Cinema Display (D684,572). Other designs covered an adapter (D684,538), the seam between the MacBook Pro's top and bottom sections (D684,570).
The Remaining Patents that were granted to Apple Today
One More Thing
For those of you who may have missed the news, The US Patent Office announced last Friday that Key Apple Patent(s) against Samsung were found to be valid, reversing their initial decision. The reversal once again demonstrates that patents matter and that the patent system still works to protect intellectual property.
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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