Apple Retains Multi-touch Patent
USPTO now once again recognizes patent No. 7,479,949 (for the multi-touch feature) in Apple’s favour after invalidating it in 2012. This happens to be one of the two patents that the ITC has determined was infringed on by Samsung, leading to a current import ban on some older Samsung models.
Titled “Touch screen device, method, and graphical user interface for determining commands by applying heuristics,” the ‘949 patent is a broad, sweeping property covering functional aspects of multitouch screens like those found in many smart devices, like the iPhone and iPad.
Steve Jobs is listed as the first of over two dozen inventors on the patent, and it is considered perhaps the most famous of his over 300 credited patents.
As FOSS Patents notes :
As we speak, the Steve Jobs patent is even stronger than it was before someone (presumably Samsung and Google) challenged it anonymously. On September 4, 2013, the USPTO issued a reexamination certificate confirming the patentability of all 20 claims because the prior art neither anticipated this invention nor renders it obvious.
A number of Apple’s key patents have been challenged for reexamination as its competitors have sought to derail Apple’s claims against them in various court battles.
Apple has also filed an appeal to broaden the US import ban to cover additional Samsung products. The Cupertino company has asked the US International Trade Commission (ITC) to review three more patent cases, following the ITC finding Samsung guilty of two patent infringements already.