Apple Wins Patents for iChat, Nitriding Stainless Steel & iPhone 4
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.
Granted Design Patents
Apple has been granted four distinct design patents today that include their sexy iPhone 4, the original iPhone & Bluetooth Headset Dock, their 2009 compact wired keyboard and their second generation iPod. Minus the empty hoopla over the antenna design, the iPhone 4's design truly stands above all smartphones on the market today.
Apple credits CEO Steve Jobs, VP Industrial Design Jonathan Ive and team members Jody Akana, Bartley Andre, Daniel Coster, Jeremy Bataillou, Daniele De Iuliis, Evans Hankey, Richard Howarth, Jonathan Ive, Duncan Kerr, Shin Nishibori, Matthew Dean Rohrbach, Peter Russell-Clarke, Douglas Satzger, Christopher Stringer, Eugene Whang and Rico Zorkendorfer as the inventors of Granted Patent D633,493 for the iPhone 4, originally filed in Q2 2010.
Original iPhone & Bluetooth Headphone Dock
Compact Wired Keyboard
Second Generation iPod
Granted Patent: Nitriding Stainless Steel for Consumer Devices
Apple's newly granted patent covers their invention which facilitates the mass production of consistent and aesthetically pleasing nitrided stainless steel components used for consumer electronic products such as the current iPhone 4's steel band. The detailing of the nitride layer being formed using a salt bath nitride process was originally described in our October 2010 patent report titled "Apple's Fanatical Eye for Detail Extends to the iPhone's Steel Band." According to Apple's patent, we could likely see Nitriding Stainless Steel being extended to other Apple products in the future like the iPod touch, a future edition of Apple's MacBook Pro and other products not described.
Apple credits Douglas Weber as the sole inventor of Granted Patent 7,896,981, originally filed in Q2 2010.
Granted Patent: iChat - Multi-participant Video Conferencing
It's taken quite some time to get through the system, but Apple has finally been granted a patent regarding iChat, their multi-participant videoconferencing system. Apple's iChat was first introduced in 2003 with the ability to video chat with only a single person. It later progresssed to the version that has won a granted patent today.
Apple's Initial Patent Claim: For the legally minded among us, Apple's initial patent claim states that the patent covers a method of distributing conference content that comprises at least one of audio and video content during a conference between participants at a plurality of at least three computers, the method comprising: at a particular computer, assessing conferencing capabilities of the particular computer of the plurality of computers to determine whether the particular computer meets a set of criteria to be designated as a central distributor of content; at the particular computer, designating the particular computer of the plurality of computers as the central distributor for said conference based on the assessment, wherein the remaining computers of the plurality of computers are designated as non-central distributors; receiving, at the central distributor, conference content from the non-central distributors; generating, at the central distributor, composite conference content from (i) the received conference content from the non-central distributors and (ii) conference content locally captured with the central distributor; distributing, from the central distributor, the composite conference content to the non-central distributors; and at the central distributor, presenting audio and video content received from the non-central distributors.
Apple credits Jim Normile, Hyeonkuk Jeong, Joe Abuan, Ryan Salsbury and Berkat Tung as the inventors of Granted Patent 7,899,170, originally filed in Q2 2005 – though documents within the patent clearly go back much further. Mr. Jeong has since moved on to LG Electronics and Ryan Salsbury to Caustic Graphics.
Other Granted Patents Published Today
Information about other granted patents will be listed here later today
Notice: Patently Apple presents only a brief summary of patents with associated graphic(s) for journalistic news purposes as each such patent application and/or Granted Patent is revealed by the U.S. Patent & Trade Office. Readers are cautioned that the full text of any patent application and/or Issued Patent should be read in its entirety for further details. About Comments: Patently Apple reserves the right to post, dismiss or edit comments.
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