« February 2011 |
| April 2011 »
Have you ever been in a meeting where someone forgot to set their phone to vibrate for incoming calls? Sometimes to be polite, you may smile at the person because the ringtone is the Flintstones theme or some other silly tune and then there are other times when your nostrils will flare if you're in the middle of a pivotal point in your presentation when the stupid phone will ring. Yes, those are the dumb-phones and Apple wants to change all of that and put smart haptics into their future iPhones to really make them, well, smart. Apple's plans are quite extensive to ensure that no matter what environment you're in, your future iPhone will be able to adapt and/or adjust the alert to whatever is needed and appropriate – autonomously. Yes, like in meetings.
Continue reading "Future iPhones May Incorporate Smart Haptics" »
In January of this year we posted a report titled "Apple Considers Integrating a Display into their Magic Mouse." This idea has once again surfaced in a new Apple patent that the US Patent Office published today titled "Incorporating Chromatic Sensors in Computer Mice." The first half of the patent discusses how the Magic Mouse will be able to improve performance when used on highly reflective surfaces such as glass, while the second half of the patent discusses how they'll be able to implement chromatic sensors so as to turn the Magic Mouse into a handheld scanner. This is a really great idea that I hope will come to market instead of being placed into File 13.
Continue reading "Apple Considers adding a little Chromatic Magic to their Mouse" »
In an Apple Discussions forum on Spaces for iPad, Robb Manning stating back in 2010 that having "the ability to touch one button and switch spaces to where I have safari up to do some research would be awesome." Well, today we move closer to that reality. The USPTO has revealed a patent that shows that Apple is bringing Spaces to the iPad. In fact, if you look closely in one patent graphic, you may actually be getting a sneak peek of OS X Lion on iPad. This spices things up a bit wouldn't you agree?
Continue reading "Patent Shows that Apple is Bringing "Spaces" to the iPad" »
In January of this year, Apple won their first solar device related patent. That particular patent presented methods of adding solar power into the power mix of portables via a voltage converter within the device. Today, the US Patent and Trademark Office published a new Apple patent relating to a new power adapter that could utilize solar energy along with other conveniences. Although this could take a little time to come to market, Apple's fifth solar related patent is at least confirming that their R&D teams are prioritizing this green-project.
Continue reading "Apple Working on a New Power Adapter that will use Solar Energy" »
Patently Apple has been keenly watching the ongoing patent war between Apple and Nokia for some time now. We began in May 2010 and again this past February with a report titled "Nokia vs. Apple: Hunting Down Infineon's Documents." Although the patent wars between these two parties have only begun, the fact remains that Nokia lost a key case against Apple last Friday. Although flabbergasted with the verdict, Nokia wasted no time in continuing their scorched earth approach against Apple. In fact, according to new court documents, Nokia and their subsidiary Intellisync have filed a new complaint against Apple alleging Apple has infringed on six additional patents. Patently Apple gives you easy access to all of these patents for your review.
Continue reading "Flabbergasted Nokia Strikes Apple with New Patent Lawsuit" »
In our last granted patent report of the day, we generally explore a rather old yet important patent; One that will provide you with a rudimentary overview of Apple's longer term ambitions of automating both our home and office environments. And yet, in the short term, Apple's patent allows us to see some of the thinking that likely went into their AirPlay feature. In fact, if the illustrations that are presented in this patent ever pan out, then it's obvious that Apple will use a method like Airplay to further automate our various environments beyond the living room. Yet something tells me that home automation is going to take much longer than any of us want to admit.
Continue reading "Apple's AirPlay May Stem from an Old Home Automation Patent " »
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 20 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In our second patent report of the day we focus entirely on one of Apple's original iPhone patents that relate to deep touch panel technology. Being that this patent only became public days before the original iPhone officially debuted, we think that this patent deserves the spotlight. There's no doubt that this vital patent could be used in any current or future patent infringement case brought against Apple or cases that Apple may open against overstepping competitors.
Continue reading "Apple Wins another Original iPhone Touch Panel Patent" »
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 20 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In our first report of the day, we look at several minor patents including a design win for the Mac Mini that was issued to Apple in China along with Apple's iPhone and iPad antenna system. Yet the most important patent in this first group goes to a series of newly advanced inductive charging docking stations that have never seen the light of day. With HP's TouchPad coming to market this summer with cool wireless charging capabilities, Apple needs to get these patented docks to market before HP scores a major point with consumers this fall.
Continue reading "Apple Wins Patents for Inductive Charging Docks, Antennas & More" »
Tampering with a winning user interface is a tricky thing. People don't generally like drastic user interface changes and yet, there are times early on in a new device cycle, where reinvention from within is necessary to keep the competition on the run and in a panic. Apple's iPhone user interface led the way in 2007 and the copycats do what they do best: they copied it. Well, Apple appears to be at it again and sending out signals that change is in the wind. Both in September and December of 2010, Apple hinted that they were considering the use of a new UI element called Spirals: An interesting UI that could be used for media, especially photos. Today, Apple introduces us to something they simply refer to as "Segmented Graphical Representations." It's a new Graphical User Interface element that presents one larger graphic, such as album art, and then segments it into a series of smart interactive tiles. The idea may begin with the iTunes Store, but Apple shows us that it could very well spill over to other iOS elements like the address book and beyond. Leaders lead and Apple is likely to take iOS to the next level sometime in the future. Until then, the competition will just have to sweat it out.
Continue reading "Apple Considers New iOS and iTunes Store UI Elements" »
Apple improved facial recognition in iLife 2011's iPhoto while adding new slideshow features and themes. It now appears that Apple is already working on the next round of improvements by adding more advanced facial recognition features to iPhoto for home slideshows or work presentations. Interestingly, the patent shows us that this iPhoto feature is designed to work on iOS devices. Another Apple patent published today discusses a new handheld device latch that will make it easier to access batteries. Apple is mum as to which handheld device the latch is for. And lastly, there's news of a third party developer working on a tripod for iPod and other iOS devices that could help us take steadier videos and photos. That was only a matter of time, though it probably won't be ready in time for this summer.
Continue reading "Apple Patents iPhoto Face Recognition for iOS + Tripod for iPod" »
On March 23, 2011, Apple's trademark application for "Smart Cover" was made public in the Canadian Intellectual Property Office database. The trademark, which was originally filed for in Jamaica this past January, came under the spotlight during the launch of the iPad 2. This isn't our typical trademark report as there's a unique twist to it that's definitely worth noting.
Continue reading "Apple Trademarks their Mag-nificent "Smart Cover" Accessory" »
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 22 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In our third and final report of the day, we say goodbye to Shake, get ready to bury the clickwheel and lastly – take a look at pattern searching via Apple's Spotlight – that's still alive and well.
Continue reading "Apple Wins Patents for Shake, Spotlight and the Clickwheel" »
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 22 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. The most interesting patent came to us as a complete surprise this morning as it wasn't originally covered. More than likely, the patent was filed in a way so as to escape the regular channels. The good news is that this patent advances Apple's new antenna system from previous applications. We were first introduced to Apple's intentions for a Telephonic MacBook back in August 2010. This was followed up with two related granted patents for a cellular antenna for a MacBook that were published respectively in September 2010 and February 2011. Apple continues to advance the concept of a Telephonic MacBook which will hopefully see the light of day sometime in the future – hopefully sooner rather than later.
Continue reading "Apple Advances the Antenna System for the Telephonic MacBook" »
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 22 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In our first of three patent reports today, we point to several notable granted patents which include Apple's seventh industrial design win for their iPod touch, another which relates to the earphone jack associated with their earphone with mic accessory and a win for Apple's Bonjour technology. Yet the most interesting granted patent in this first lot that we review today, definitely goes to a smart shoe patent. This patent relates to a sporting shoe wear-out system that Apple has yet to bring to market that would warn athletes when their running shoe, ski boot and/or soccer cleats were no longer properly supporting their foot so as to avoid injury.
Continue reading "Apple Wins Smart Shoe, Earphones with Mic & iPod Touch Patents " »
Just as rumors begin to surface that the iPhone 5 may sport a metal back panel, China grants Apple eleven design patents for the iPhone 4. While the iPhone 4's design may be highly controversial, the wins in China coming back to back with Apple's many US design wins, clearly illustrates Apple's desire to protect this sleek design against their many copycat competitors.
Continue reading "China Grants Apple 11 Design Patents for the iPhone 4 " »
Imperium (IP) Holdings, Inc. has filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Apple and other smartphone heavyweights such as Kyocera, LG Electronics, RIM, Sony Ericsson, Nokia and Motorola. Yet the case really isn't about smartphones as it is about the cameras they incorporate. Imperium Holdings holds five distinct patents that primarily deal with image sensors.
Continue reading "Apple Sued for Incorporating Image Sensors into Macs & iPhone" »
It seems that Europe is getting all of Apple's trademark business these days. Since January there have been five major filings alone. It Began with Ping, Apple's branding for their social network for music. The others that soon followed included Ping's associated "Bubbles" logo; "Places" for social networking; "Apple" covering everything under the sun; and finally the famous Granny Smith logos that once belonged to the Beatles. Well, the trend continues today as the EU has just granted Apple 24 iOS icon related design patents. Apple's European copycat competitors are now on notice.
Continue reading "The EU Grants Apple 24 iOS Icon Design Patents" »
Cordance Corporation and Efficient Online Purchasing have launched a patent infringement case against Apple, Victoria's Secret and PayPal. The case specifically against Apple involves their iTunes purchasing/transaction system which allegedly infringes on Cordance's 2004 patent. Updated.
Continue reading "Apple & Victoria's Secret Sued in a Not-So-Sexy Patent Lawsuit" »
Apple loves Industrial design and that's evident in their string of creative breakthroughs for products such as the iPod, iPod touch, iPhone, iPad, iMac and MacBook Air. Furthermore, they're fanatical passion for detail ventures into every facet of design from their stunningly crafted iPhone which includes advanced nitriding stainless steel and exotic materials like Liquid Metal right through to their New York store's insanely inspiring glass architecture and their other distinctive mall outlets. Every facet of an Apple product is considered for redesign at some point in time, and today we learn that Apple is considering the use a new flat cabling system that could end our tangled-wire blues and perhaps even prevent nasty power surges.
Continue reading "Apple Considers New Flat Cabling System to Control Power Surges" »
On March 15, 2011, the Canadian Intellectual Property Office finally published five trademark applications that Apple had filed for earlier in the month. The applications cover two formal trademarks for "Smart Instruments" and "Touch Instruments." Additionally, Apple has applied for three Smart Instrument Icons including "guitar," "bass" and "keyboard." The filings cover a comprehensive if not sweeping list of product protections under wares and services. Notably, Apple has included "Toys" as a breakout category. In context, you have to wonder if Apple is eyeing the gaming and/or toy markets for a future game or app to compete with the likes of Guitar Hero and/or the new Guitarsmith. It would make for a great Christmas gift to go along with that shiny new iPad under the tree, wouldn't you agree? Time will tell. Updated August 9, 2011 with US filing information.
Continue reading "Apple Files Trademarks for Smart and Touch Instruments + Icons" »
Court documents have revealed today that Ogma LLC has launched a second patent infringement case against Apple dealing with video formats and aspect ratios for displays. Their first lawsuit was reported on this past weekend. On a second front, Patently Apple has just learned that Apple has launched a breach of contract lawsuit against Motorola. With a number of sealed documents found within a barrage of documents, we find it difficult to assess what the heart of this case is all about at this point in time. But it's certainly an interesting twist in the Apple vs. Motorola legal wars.
Continue reading "Ogma Strikes Again & Apple Sues Motorola for Breach of Contract" »
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 9 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. There are several notables within this group which include a Resolution Independent User Interface Design along with three industrial design wins for Apple's iPhone 3G dock, their 2009 iPod nano and the original 2007 iPhone. Yet the perhaps the most important granted patent in this lot today goes to a key multi-touch patent. This 2007 patent is definitely a defacto classic in defining the gigantic leap forward that smartphones took at that very moment in time. The iPhone was born and changed the smartphone market forever.
Continue reading "Apple Wins Key 2007 iPhone and Related Multi-Touch Patents" »
Apple Corps had won two previous trademark infringement cases against Apple Inc. in the years 1981 and 1991 respectfully. Their third case against Apple Inc., which was filed in 2003, ended up in a legal settlement in 2007. In that settlement, Apple Corps sadly lost their legal rights to their famed Granny Smith Apple Logos to Apple Inc. Sometimes, the spoils of legal wars are painful. On a happier note however, the Beatles music was finally brought to iTunes on November 16, 2010. To ensure final ownership of the famed Apple logos, Apple Inc. has filed a pair of trademark applications with the European Trademarks Office under 14 International Classifications covering such matters as computer hardware, online social networking services, mobile phones, musical instruments, games, clothing/headgear, advertising, education and broadcasting.
Continue reading "Apple Files for Apple Logo Trademarks Once used by the Beatles" »
A little unknown company going by the name of Ogma LLC is suing Apple and others such as Dell, HP, HTC, Nokia, RIM, Motorola and Sony Ericsson for infringing their patent that relates to a programmable motion-sensitive sound effects device.
Continue reading "Ogma Sues Apple with Motion-Sensitive Sound Effect Device Patent" »
A few minor yet interesting Apple patents published today show that Apple has invented a new remote camera control accessory that might come in handy for photo and video shoots with the family. It sounds like it may also be used for other purposes like a security system. Another patent shows that Apple is working on new audio controls for iOS devices and even has another version of a DJ app for the iPhone. Lastly, a news item out of Japan states that a new navigation based app is coming to the iPhone on March 18 to those thinking about buying a new Honda this year.
Continue reading "Apple Invents Remote Camera Controller, Audio Fun + Honda News " »
Just as the auto industry is racing to find the perfect electric engine, the tech sector is in a similar race to find a better battery or a new energy source to extend the life of portable devices. Being that Apple is the leading mobile devices company in the world today, they know all too well how important a breakthrough in this field may be. In today's patent we see that Apple is exploring ways of building a miniature electromagnetic induction system right into future portable devices as a means of extending battery life. This is one race Apple can't afford to lose.
Continue reading "Future Apple Hardware to Harness the Power of Magnetic Induction" »
On March 09, 2011, the Canadian Intellectual Property Office published a very odd entry. According to this Office, Apple has applied for the "Thunderbolt" trademark under application 1516633. The question is why?
Continue reading "Why is Apple Trademarking Thunderbolt? " »
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 10 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. The notables within this group include Apple's MagSafe Power Adapter for the MacBook Pro, a second round design win for the iPhone 4 and another design win for the 13" MacBook Pro. Yet the more interesting wins of the day have to go to Apple's famous "Home" screen button that is incorporated into most iOS devices in addition to a win for a possible new iOS UI regarding stored assets. And finally, Apple's has won yet another key multi-touch patent specifically relating to iOS animations.
Continue reading "Apple Wins iPhone 4, iOS Home Button & New iOS UI Patents +" »
While there are a few companies that have developed a video ringtone app for the iPhone, like iFonetec, Apple thinks that they could do a little better. In a recently discovered Apple patent, we see that Apple is exploring ways of delivering a means for creating video ringtones for telephonic iOS devices. The feature will supposedly alow you to utilize videos from iTunes, iMovie, or even an old DVD or Tivo video that you have hanging around. Apple's patent presents us with many interesting, if not cool twists, to the idea of video ringtones. And knowing Apple, they're likely to deliver something worth using.
Continue reading "Apple Dreams Up Some Cool Video Ringtones for the iPhone +" »
The days of playing the air-guitar or air-drums may be coming to an end for some. Or perhaps it could be better described as giving the great air guitarists amongst us a chance to stretch their repertoire with totally original tunes using the iPad 2 as their next axe. Time will tell. For now, a new Apple patent has surfaced that discusses how GarageBand is able to generate low and high energy tones. This was partially discussed during Apple's iPad 2 event last Wednesday. Yet the bigger news that was found in this latest patent is that GarageBand has been redesigned for touch displays beyond the iPad. It appears that GarageBand may very well be headed for the iPhone in the not too distant future.
Continue reading "Apple's GarageBand Patent Surfaces for iPad, the iPhone & More" »
Can you say World Domination? Can you say R-e-v-o-l-u-t-i-o-n? Yeeees, it appears that Apple is tired of incrementally expanding their Trademark under one, two or three International Classes at a time, such as with their recent filing for adding social networking. The hell with that; Apple has decided to file their trademark under a whopping 42 International Classes in Europe. Considering that there are only 45 possible classes to begin with, it's pretty clear that Apple is going for it all at some point in time, so why pretend right? They're now covered for such things as headgear (that's great!), games, telecommunications, education, medical and legal services. Those are understandable, but then they veer into off-the-wall categories such as carpets, furniture, rubber, vehicles, soaps, paints and pharmaceuticals. In this new Post-PC era that Apple has single handedly devised, they're now free to take flight in any direction they so choose. Today, they've made that abundantly clear.
Continue reading "Apple Inc Files for "Apple" Trademark Under 42 International Classes" »
Before starting this report, I just wanted to thank the Apple Team for putting on such a great iPad-2 show yesterday that presented us with a nice round of new features that many had hoped for. With that said, our second patent report of the day covers Apple's latest round of pedometer related Apps. Apple's iPod nano was the first iOS device to include this app and today's patent says that it should be coming to other iOS devices over time. A secondary pedometer related patent advances the pedometer by working with multiple sensors and might, in theory, work with a stepper which would be a welcome advance for many who workout with this kind of equipment.
Continue reading "Apple Considers Advancing their Pedometer App " »
Apple seems to be onto something new of late. They've been exploring the implementation of the smart port into future hardware. It will eliminate the current printed port icons that are on hardware today, such as for Firewire or Thunderbolt in favor of introducing "invisible-like" icons that are created by using micro-perforation techniques. The reason for doing this serves two purposes. The first is to once again refine Apple's hardware aesthetics and the second is to add the ability to introduce active or morphing port icons. These new morphing icons would be able to communicate both the location of a port and/or any danger associated with it.
Continue reading "Apple Conducts Fascinating Research into Smart Port Detection" »
In case you live in a cave, Apple has just released the new iPad 2. And in Apple's traditional style, they brought the house down with another winning round of upgrades. The iPad 2 now sports a sleeker design with a new powerhouse processor to give it muscle, dual cameras for creating home movies and enjoying FaceTime while delivering a number of iLife apps to kick things up a notch. And being that we're Patently Apple, it would only be right that we point out the patents that came to life with the iPad 2. All in all, it was great to see Steve Jobs delivering his new bag of toys for us to play with – and play with them we shall. I think they've got another winner here folks and I think that you'll agree.
Continue reading "Apple's iPad 2: The Power to Rock'n Roll! " »
Apple has been a busy bee this quarter filing trademarks related social networking. In January they updated their "Apple" trademark to cover social networking while protecting their new "Ping" social network for music lovers in Europe and China. Then in late February Apple filed for "Places" which was filed under an International Class for social networking involving GPS services. Today, Apple is out to protect the stylized bubbles associated with Ping that is presented in the iTunes sidebar as shown above.
Continue reading "Apple Files Trademark for Ping's Stylized Bubbles Symbol" »
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 23 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In this second round of granted patents, we primarily focus on the technology behind Apple's World Travel Adapter Kit and an important technology behind their word processing app "Pages" called semantic reconstruction. Yet the most important granted patent of the day, in our view, goes to Apple's virtual keyboard technology. This area of technology is one of Apple's strong suits and so this marks an important patent win as they push forward and take virtual keyboards to the next level.
Continue reading "Apple Wins "Pages" and Core iOS Virtual Keyboard Patents" »
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 23 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In this first round of granted patents that we'll be covering today, the notables include a series of Apple product designs along with high profile patents for Apple's iChat video conferencing system, the iPhone 4's sexy stainless steel band and the iPhone 4's winning design.
Continue reading "Apple Wins Patents for iChat, Nitriding Stainless Steel & iPhone 4" »