Oh No! Here We Go Again. Check out the New Patent Apple Was Just Granted!
By: Hillel Fuld (@hilzfuld)
Whether you are on Apple’s side that the company has a right to protect what it considers its intellectual property by banning phones like the Galaxy Nexus or you are part of the boycott Apple camp, I think we can all agree that the software patent system is broken.
That is not to say that a person should not be able to patent something truly original, software or hardware, but when we are talking about code, it has to be truly original, and not something as generic as searching and unifying various sources into one interface.
Well, if Apple’s track record is any indication, we can expect its legal activity over the past few months to be dwarfed by its upcoming litigations. Apple was just granted over 25 mobile patents but as Phandroid points out, one of them sticks out like a sore thumb. Allow me to quote the patent description and let you be the judge of it.
“In a computer-implemented method, a portion of an electronic document is displayed on the touch screen display. The displayed portion of the electronic document has a vertical position in the electronic document. An object is detected on or near the displayed portion of the electronic document.
In response to detecting the object on or near the displayed portion of the electronic document, a vertical bar is displayed on top of the displayed portion of the electronic document. The vertical bar has a vertical position on top of the displayed portion of the electronic document that corresponds to the vertical position in the electronic document of the displayed portion of the electronic document.
After a predetermined condition is met, display of the vertical bar is ceased. The vertical bar is displayed for a predetermined time period when the portion of the electronic document is initially displayed.”
From where I am sitting, Apple just pretty much patented everything we all do daily on our smartphones. That includes the graphical user interfaces for email, calls, camera, video player, calendar, browser, search, notes, maps and much more. This has to stop.
Well, if I was Google, I would be pretty concerned with this…
Until now, Apple has had legal battles with Samsung, Motorola, HTC, and many more. I can already see tomorrow’s news “Apple sues every other mobile player on the planet”.
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