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August 2011

A Future Diagnostic Tool from Apple will ingeniously work with iTunes

1a - Apple's Future Device Diagnostic Tool will Ingeniously work with iTunes, Aug 2011, Patently Apple Blog

Earlier this morning a rumor report stated that "Apple announced (internally) that they have put the final touch to the tools that will facilitate a diagnostic." That's interesting, considering that an Apple patent application that was just published last week introduces this diagnostic process in great detail. If you want to know more of the real details, then this is the report to read. According to Apple, the new diagnosing application that will reside on future Apple devices will be ingeniously tied into iTunes where you now get updates and so forth. It'll be an easy way to get simple device problems fixed without having to visit a Genius at the Apple Store. Now that's a great idea.  

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Apple Wins iPhone Ambient Light Sensor, Time Machine & Final Cut Pro Patents

1 - Apple Wins iPhone Ambient Light Sensor, Time Machine & Final Cut Pro Patents, Aug 2011, Patently Apple Blog

The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 18 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. Earlier today we covered all of Apple's granted design patents and in our second report we cover three distinct patents. The first covers the iPhone's ambient light sensor, the second covers Apple's "Time Machine," a system back-up application, and the third covers color management in Apple's Emmy winning application called Final Cut Pro.  

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Apple Wins Design Patents for iOS, Virtual Keyboard Layers, the Original White iPhone 4 & More

1 - Apple Wins Design Patents for the iOS Interface, Original White iPhone 4 & More Aug 2011, Patently Apple blog

The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 18 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In our first of two reports today we primarily cover Apple's 10 design patent wins that include iOS's user interface, its virtual keyboard and several related icons. Yet the most interesting design win today goes to Apple's original White iPhone 4 that never quite made it to market. It's one of those designs that Steve Jobs just didn't get quite right: An oddity worth noting.  

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Apple's WebKit Trademark Filing Challenged by Research in Motion

1 - Apple's WebKit Trademark Filing Challenged by Research in Motion, Aug 2011, Patently Apple

Research in Motion has filed an official opposing action against Apple's trademark filing for "WebKit" in Canada. The opposing action which was filed earlier this month has been granted an extension of time. Many industry players will be very interested in the outcome of this decsision which could be issued in early 2012.  

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Apple Wins 8 Design Patents for Apple Icons & New Retail Packaging

1B - Apple Wins 8 Design Patents for Apple Icons & New Retail Packaging, Aug 27, 2011, Patently Apple Website    
China's Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 8 newly granted design patents for Apple Inc. late Friday. The designs noted above cover Apple's App Store and FaceTime logos and icons in addition to four retail packaging designs which appear to be new. They could simply be representing simpler redesigned iPod nano cases that would allow the packaging to sit on in-store wall hooks or be for a new miniature iOS device or accessory that's debuting this fall. Time will tell on that front, but for now, the newly granted design patents provide Apple's legal team with more ammunition against present and future copycat designers. 

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Apple Invents Privacy Glasses for Reading Confidential Information or Playing Multi-Player Games

1 - Apple invents Privacy Glasses for reading confidential info or playing multi-player games, aug 2011, Patently Apple

On August 25, 2011, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals a wild new concept relating to privacy glasses. While the new specs will be applauded by both professionals and multi-player-gamers alike – gamers may get the added thrill of tapping into the specs' 3D capabilities. While we covered Apple's initial patent regarding privacy-mode viewing in May of this year, it appears as though this project has taken on dramatic new twists. As computer users shift more towards using mobile devices like iPads and MacBooks as their primary devices, and use them more and more in public spaces, privacy-viewing is going to be an essential feature for all future mobile devices. Apple is out to be first and more importantly, the best in delivering this essential new feature and/or accessory. 

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Apple Wins Key Patents Related to Multi-Touch & "Numbers"

1 - Apple wins key patents related to Multi-Touch & Numbers, Aug 2011, Patently Apple 
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 16 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In our second and final granted patent report of the day you'll learn about two key patents that Apple has won. The first patent relates to Apple's spreadsheet app known as "Numbers," which is a component of their iWork Suite – and the second patent relates to Multi-Touch technology that emerged in late 2007, just after the iPhone's debut.   

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Apple Wins Solar, iOS Camera & iPhone Docking Patents

1 - Apple Wins Solar, iOS Camera & iPhone Docking Patents, Aug 2011, Patently Apple 
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 16 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In our first granted patent report of the day you'll learn about newly granted patents covering a solar power converter, an iOS camera related patent detailing the rotation of display orientation of a captured image, a third patent covering a 3D Video Viewer that was meant for iMovie and a couple of iPhone docking station patents that illustrate features that have yet to surface.  

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Apple Files for Mail Trademark & Registers OS X Lion USB Stick Design

1A - Apple Files for Mail Trademark & Registers OS X Lion USB Stick Design 
On August 19, 2011, the US Patent & Trademark Office published Apple's latest trademark application for "Mail" under application 85398447 which was filed on Monday. The distinguishing mark that Apple emphasizes in their application is the phrase "Hello From Cupertino." Apple has also registered a design for the USB Stick relating to OS X Lion's Recovery Drive in China. The same design is also used as a MacBook Air USB software reinstall-drive. 

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Apple to Advance their "Maps + Compass" Feature with Augmented Reality

1 - Apple to Advance their Maps + Compass Feature with Augmented Reality, Aug 2011, Patently Apple

On August 18, 2011, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals one of the next chapters for Apple's "Map + Compass" iOS feature. In the future, you'll be able to capture an intersection on your iPhone's camera and do a search based on that image. If you're looking for the Golden Gate Bridge while visiting San Francisco, Apple's Maps + Compass feature will be able to superimpose the directions from your current location to where you want to go. It will include turn by turn instructions according to Apple's documentation. Apple's hire of founder and CEO of PlaceBase, an advanced digital mapping firm, illustrates just how eager they are in advancing Maps + Compass for iOS devices with augmented reality. In fact, in typical Apple fashion, their new augmented application features will go far beyond just software. Apple has clearly indicated that they're developing a new interactive augmented reality 3D display that is considered to be a smart transparent display. This is what creates Apple's "Magic" product feature declarations when introducing a new product feature that drives the competition and critics crazy. Now you know that it's magic for very sophisticated reasons. It's a perfect blend of advanced hardware and software that few could match. 

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HTC Claims that Apple's Computers, iPhone & iPad Infringe on their Patents

1 - HTC Corporation vs. AppleJust when it looked like HTC was about to settle their lawsuit with Apple involving some twenty patents, they've decided to do an about face and strike back at Apple by launching a patent infringement case of their own. HTC is seeking relief by requesting the court to grant them triple damages for Apple's willful infringement of three of their patents. HTC believes that almost everything in Apple's product line-up infringes on their patents including the Macbook, iPhone, iPad and more. Either the talks with Apple's legal counsel didn't go very well or they were using their play-nice strategy as a delay tactic for their counter lawsuit. In time we'll know which of the two it was. 

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Apple Wins Patents for a Sporting App & Camera Lens Baffle While Introducing us to iCloud Printing Services

1 - Apple Wins patents for sporting app, camera lens baffle + iCloud printing services, aug 2011, Patently Apple 
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 20 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In our third and final granted patent report of the day we take a look at Apple's yet to be released sporting app that Apple calls a "lifestyle companion" plus we take a look at a camera lens baffle for iOS devices. The last item in this report takes a brief look at a series of patent applications that cover Apple's upcoming iCloud printing services. No, Apple doesn't describe these services as being revolutionary – but rather as being a "cloud computing paradigm." I suspect that CEO Steve Jobs will retain the former for a future press release. What else is new? - ha!  

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Apple Wins Key Patents for Multi-Touch Displays, MagSafe for Future iPad & More

1 - Apple wins key patents for multi-touch displays, magsafe port for future iPad & more, Aug 2011, Patently Apple 
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 20 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In our second granted patent report of the day we cover Apple's patents for integrating MagSafe into a future iPad as well as a few design patents covering Apple's original iPod and iPod nano in addition to two user interface designs for iTunes. Yet the winner in this group bar none is a patent for Apple's multi-touch display technology that ignited their revolutionary iPhone in 2007. This is what distinguished the iPhone from any other at that time. Apple has been granted a patent for their method of fabricating a capacitive touch sensor panel. 

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Apple Wins Major Patent for Integrating Cellular Antennas into MacBook and iMac Keyboards

1 - Apple wins patent for integrating cellular antennas into macbook & wireless keyboards, aug 2011, Patently Apple 
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 20 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. Our first granted report of the day only covers a single major patent victory of Apple's which covers how they intend to integrating cellular antennas under the keys of both MacBooks and wireless keyboards like that used for the iMac. That revelation of cellular capabilities coming to an iMac is an eye-opener by itself. This is Apple's fourth cellular based MacBook related patent in just the last year and the second which covers hiding the cellular antenna. While we don't know which combination of technologies Apple will use to bring cellular capabilities to both the MacBook and iMac at this time, the important point is that Apple is determined to bring such capabilities to market in the not-too-distant future.  

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Apple Files for Figurative Trademark for Smart Cover in China

1 - Apple files for Figurative Trademark fo Smart Cover in China, Aug 2011, Patently Apple 
On August 15, 2011, the Patent & Trademark Office in China has published Apple's latest figurative trademark application for "Smart Cover" under application 302003147. Apple has filed their figurative trademark under International Classes 9 and 18 which covers such things as covering cases, sleeves, sheaths, and pouches for computers as well as business cases.  

 

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Multiple Carrier Profiles & Schematic Maps may be on iPhone's Roadmap

1 - Multiple Carrier Profiles & Schematic Maps may be on the iPhone's Roadmap, Aug 2011, Patently Apple 
Last Thursday a number of very interesting patents surfaced at the US Patent and Trademark Office that Patently Apple amply covered. Yet a couple of minor yet interesting patent applications came to light that we thought shouldn't go unreported. The first one covers a new schematic mapping system for iOS devices, especially those with smaller displays such as the iPhone and iPod touch. The new schematic mapping technology will present maps that are very much like those that you'd see in a typical subway station. While the subway track itself may actually twist and turn from station to station, a typical subway map only represents the subway route as being in a straight line. Apple wants to simplify the mapping-out of routes for users by providing schematic routes to destinations. The second patent is an interesting one for business travels who would like their iPhone to carry a secondary mobile profile so that they could operate it in a foreign country without roaming charges.  

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The Grand eBook Conspiracy: Class Action Efforts Launched against Apple

1 - A Series of Class Action Lawsuits Launched Against Apple Over Fixing eBook Pricing, Aug 2011, Patently Apple 
Summons have been Issued to Defendants Apple, Inc., Hachette Book Group, Inc., HarperCollins Publishers, Inc., Macmillan Publishers, Inc., Penguin Group (USA) Inc. & Simon & Schuster, Inc. in what appears to be a new class action lawsuit in the making in California. Under the "Nationwide California Law Class" segment of this case, the Plaintiff's legal counsel states that "One of the chief architects of the unlawful conspiracy, Steve Jobs, is a resident of California and the CEO of Apple computers." The complaint goes on to state that "Apple facilitated changing the eBook pricing model and conspired with the Publisher Defendants to do so." The pricing model that is constantly referred to in this complaint is labeled the new "Agency model" which is really at the heart of this case. Yet what struck me the most when reading this complaint was its constant references to "Amazon's pro-consumer pricing" and how Apple was out to stop Amazon. Even though the complaint wasn't filed by Amazon, it's pretty clear that the slant for Amazon vs. Apple is no coincidence. Moreover, it doesn't end there. Three additional complaints have been filed against Apple on this very same front late last week with Apple as the central villain in this grand conspiracy for ebook price fixing. Coincidence – I think not. But one thing is for sure: it makes for interesting reading.

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New Patents Surface for an iPhone Antenna Clip, Solar Energy and a new Oil Resistant Coating for iOS Devices

1 - New Patent Surface for an iPhone Antenna Clip, Solar Energy & More, Aug 2011, Patently Apple 
A number of interesting Apple patent applications surfaced at the US Patent & Trademark Office yesterday. This report will cover three of them. The first covers Apple's ongoing research into solar energy for use with future portable devices. The second covers a new finger-oil resistant coating for iOS devices to keep our displays fingerprint free. The patent was only filed in February of this year which would suggest that this new coating may apply to devices set to be released in the coming months or years and not a technology already applied. The last patent is very interesting as well as it covers a new iPhone related antenna clip for use with an all-metal embodiment. The patent states that the patent figure is an exploded view of the device which could suggest that the antenna clip could one day be a part of an iPhone-nano-like device. Time will tell if this idea will ever fly, but it's definitely one to keep an eye out for going forward. 

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Apple Focused on Advancing iOS Metaphors to a Higher Level

1 - Apple Focused on Advancing iOS Metaphors to a Higher Level, Aug 2011, Patently Apple 
On August 11, 2011, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals one of the possible next chapters for Apple's iOS. Apple's patent application focuses on advancing iOS metaphors to a higher level. In this application we see that Apple is working on new ways of working with a 3D user interface. One example shows us that a user will be able to creatively design a hole, tunnel or even a trap door in their UI that could send files to their work or home office like a portal in seconds. In the not-too-distant future, a user will be able to shred documents on their iOS devices by simply using a new shredding gesture. And if that wasn't enough, users will be able to one day create 3D objects with a simple finger gesture. Considering that OS X Lion just introduced iOS-like features into our desktop experience, we're likely to see some of these future metaphors spill over to our desktops as well. Just when Apple's competition thought that they've safely figured out how to copy the iOS experience, we see that Apple is preparing to take iOS to the next level. It's back to the drawing board for iOS copycats and I doubt that any of us will be losing any sleep over that. 

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Apple Reveals Big Plans to Integrate Projectors into iOS Devices +

1 - Apple reveals big plans to integrate integrated projectors into iOS devices +, Aug 2011, Patently Apple 
On August 11, 2011, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a grand patent application from Apple that reveals their plans of integrating mini or pico-like projectors into future iOS devices while introducing a likely projector accessory for MacBooks. Apple has been working on this idea for some years now. In June 2009 Apple first hinted that they would one day integrate a projector system into iOS devices. In March 2010 Apple's broad patent application came to light concerning networked projection systems and later in April 2010 we learned that Apple's research teams had begun working on integrating a projector into a MacBook. Today's incredibly detailed patent application reveals how they're working on pico-like projectors for iOS devices and how these projectors will work with a shared workspace in presentations. Apple's patent even details how they'll introduce advanced gesturing that will be able to interpret shadow and silhouette gesturing associated with presentations in a darkened environment. The level of detail associated with this patent would suggest that Apple's development teams are moving full steam ahead on the projection system project which will further push the likes of Apple's iPad into the enterprise. 

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Apple Wins Patents for Integrated Touch Screen, Voicemail & More

1 - Apple wins patents for integrated touch screen, voicemail & more, Aug 2011, Patently Apple 
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 20 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. There were three notable inventions presented today. The first relates to Apple's "Integrated Touch Screen." The invention allows the touch display to be manufactured with fewer parts and/or processing steps as well as ensuring that the display itself may be thinner, brighter and require less power. The second invention relates to a method and GUI related to Apple's iOS "Voicemail Manager." And the last noteworthy invention of the day relates to a Mac Pro-like tower's modular layout mechanisms. This could be a part of a future tower computer – should Apple continue to sell such beasts. At the end of the day it should be noted that the two specific patents relating to the iPhone are just more "Bogus Patents" to get under the skin of Google's Senior Vice President and Chief Legal Officer David Drummond's skin: Ahhh. 

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Apple Sued over Fast Booting in OS X with a Patent linked to LG Electronics

1 - Patent Infringement Lawsuit Report - Operating Systems Solutions LLC vs. Apple 
A Floridian Company by the name Operating Systems Solutions, LCC, has filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Apple for OS X's fast booting operation. The interesting twist to this lawsuit is that the patent was originally owned by LG Electronics. 

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Apple Reveals their In-Store Security Systems for Devices & More

1 - Apple Reveals their In-Store Security Systems for Devices & More, Aug 2011, Patently Apple 
If you know Steve Jobs then you know that he tries to patent everything under the sun including everything related to their own Apple Stores. Whether it's their Classic Glass Apple Store architecture in New York or the average in-mall Apple Store design layout or even the iPad stands that sit on the tables at every Apple Store, they have it covered. So it shouldn't come as a surprise that Apple has once again applied for a patent to cover their unique in-store security systems for devices that includes very sophisticated cabling and alarms. The security system designs also extend to Apple Kiosks in stores like Best Buy and Future Shop. Apple also states that their security systems could extend to oddities like transportation vehicle instruments and televisions. The former speculatively sounds like a potential new accessory in the making that would be welcomed. Some of the security designs appearing in the application seem to be new and the fact that Apple only filed for a patent this past Christmas tells us that we may see some of these new designs coming to an Apple Store in the not- too-distant future.  

 

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Apple Thinks that you'll Flip Over a Future Generation iPhone

1A - Apple Thinks that you'll Flip Over a Future Generation iPhone, 2011, Patently Apple 
The US Patent & Trademark Office has published a patent application from Apple that reveals one of the next chapters for Apple's iPhone. According to Apple's documentation, a future iPhone could actually sport a display on each side of the device so as to advance the richness of reading an e-book or e-magazine. In April of this year Apple revealed a hybrid e-paper and LCD display for a future iPhone and today Apple explains how a user will be able to use such a display with a new flip action mapping system. The mapping system will provide a reader with options that will easily enable them to take notes about what they're reading or view a full dictionary definition or even find related reading materials depending on which direction that they flip their iPhone. This future iPhone will also be able to be turned into unique image viewer. While this is definitely a futuristic design, we're at least getting a peek into the intial phases of Apple's research in finding the ultimate reading application for future mobile devices. 

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Apple's Inductive Charging Patent Finally Surfaces

1 - Apple's Inductive Charging Patent Finally Surfaces, Aug 2011, Patently Apple 
On August 4, 2011, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals two specific concepts of an "Inductive Charging System" for use with iOS devices. The first concept involves an oddly designed charging tower. Apple envisions a user wrapping their earphone cables around this charging tower and placing a new conductive metal mesh earphone on the media device to begin the charging process. The second system, which seems to be a little more practical, involves an acoustic charging mechanism which wouldn't require a charging tower. Instead of creating separate inductive chargers for various media players and tablets as others have done, Apple is trying to create a single inductive charger that would fit the needs of multiple devices. 

 

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