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Apple Wins Key Multi-Antenna Patent Covering LTE & More

1 - Apple Wins Key Multi-Antenna Patent Covering LTE & More
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of twenty-two newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. Today's first report covers a granted patent related the iPhone. The patent covers the use of a Multi-Antenna System which includes the key LTE frequency. Apple has had some recent problems pertaining to the new iPad's LTE coverage in Australia and some European countries. Other granted patents highlighted in today's report include the iPhone's Dynamic Audio Parameter Adjustment System and Apple's second iPod shuffle design win in as many weeks. Our Final Patent Round Up section completes our report by listing an additional twelve granted patents covering such topics as "near real-time streaming" related to playlists" and "peer-to-peer security authentication protocol."  


Apple Receives a Granted Patent that Relates to the Transmission and Reception of Data in Multi-Antenna Systems Including LTE


Apple has received a Granted Patent that relates to the field of wireless communication and data networks. More particularly, Apple's invention is directed to the efficient allocation of time-frequency resources of a wireless communications system using multiple antennas, including the asymmetric distribution of data streams among the antennas.


Apple's patent discusses the various antennas utilized in the iPhone and related standards such as LTE, UMTS, MIMO, 3GPP, OFDM,


One Focus of the Patent: LTE Network Architecture


Considering that Apple's 2012 iPad is LTE compliant, it's only natural to briefly highlight this aspect of Apple's multi-antenna system patent. Apple's patent FIG. 6 shown below depicts the exemplary high-level network architecture 600 of an LTE system comprising a radio access network E-UTRAN 602 (Evolved UMTS Terrestrial Radio Access Network) and a core network EPC 610 (Evolved Packet Core).


The E-UTRAN 602 consists of one or more base stations eNBs 604 (evolved Node B). Each eNB 604 provides radio coverage for one or more mobile radio cells 606 within E-UTRAN 602. Message signals or data signals are transmitted between a respective eNB 604 and a mobile station UE 608 in a mobile radio cell 606 over the air interface on the basis of a multiple access method.


For LTE, new multiple access methods have been specified in Apple's patent. For the downlink transmission direction, OFDMA in combination with TDMA has been specified. OFDMA in combination with TDMA subsequently referred to herein as OFDMA/TDMA, is a multi-carrier multiple access method in which a subscriber is provided with: (i) a defined number of subcarriers in the frequency spectrum; and (ii) a defined transmission time for the purpose of data transmission. Uplink data transmission is based on SC-FDMA (Single Carrier Frequency Division Multiple Access) in combination with TDMA.


2 - Apple patent fig 6 - re LTE Network Architecture

LTE specifies that MIMO operation must be supported for higher data rates. Apple's patent FIG. 7 demonstrates the qualitative difference between SISO (Single In, Single Out), SIMO (Single In, Multiple Out), MISO (Multiple In, Single Out) and MIMO systems. While primarily discussed in the context of MIMO, the principles of the present invention could readily be adapted for MISO architectures in addition to MIMO architectures.


3 - Fig 7 - invention covers a plurality of multiple antenna systems

Further, while described primarily in the context of multiple antenna systems that use a maximum number of four (4) antennas (i.e. up to four (4) antennas at the mobile side as well as up to four (4) antennas at the cell site as specified in LTE implementations), it is recognized that the principles of the present invention may equally be applied to systems incorporating more or less than the maximum number (4) specified in LTE implementations.


Apple's patent FIG. 6 is a functional block diagram illustrating an exemplary Long Term Evolution (LTE) network architecture utilized in accordance with the principles of the present invention; FIG. 7 is a functional block diagram illustrating a plurality of multiple antenna systems utilized in accordance with the principles of the present invention.


Apple credits Hyung-Nam Choi as the sole inventor of this patent which was originally filed in Q2 2008. Apple's patent presents 17 claims. Those wishing to delve into Apple's patent a little deeper can do so by checking out granted patent 8,155,063.


Apple Granted an iPhone Patent for Dynamic Audio Parameter Adjustment using Touch Sensing


Apple has received a Granted Patent relating to their iPhone invention for a touch sensing earpiece region. An acoustic leakage analyzer is coupled to the touch sensing earpiece region, to analyze signals from the region and on that basis adjust an audio processing parameter (that is used by an audio processor to generate an audio receiver input signal for the device). This allows the device to automatically adjust the audio processing parameter to compensate for acoustic leakage between the user's ear and the earpiece region.


4 - Apple Patent, Dynamic Audio Parameter Adjustment using Touch Sensing

Apple credits Shaohai Chen as the sole inventor of patent 8,155,330 which was originally filed in Q1 2009. Apple's patent covers five claims.  


Apple Wins Second Design Patent Related to the iPod Shuffle (Fourth Generation)


Apple has been granted another design patent today for their Fourth Generation iPod Shuffle. The first 2012 patent win the iPod Shuffle was covered in our report last week. This week's patent win covers the physical shell of the iPod Shuffle.


5 - Apple wins 2nd design patent for current iPod Shuffle

Apple's design patent D657,381 was filed in Q4 2011.


Patent Round-Up


Over and above the granted patents that were specifically reported on today, we present you with links to a few other interesting ones below:


8,156,332 Peer-to-peer security authentication protocol

8,156,275 Power managed lock optimization

8,156,271 Systems and methods for storage management in a data processing device

8,156,123 Method and apparatus for processing metadata

8,156,106 Methods and systems for managing data

8,156,104 Methods and systems for managing data

8,156,089 Real-time or near real-time streaming with compressed playlists

8,156,081 Method and apparatus for updating resource records in a name-server database

8,155,112 Fly-by serial bus arbitration

8,154,275 - Apparatus and method for testing sense amplifier thresholds on an integrated circuit

8,153,882 - Time compression/expansion of selected audio segments in an audio file

8,152,570 - Power connector having protective interior cover


It should be noted that our report was delayed this morning due to the USPTO's six hour delay in publishing them.


Notice: 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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Marc Driftmeyer

What is also important to note is that they filed in Europe back in 2005.

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