New Apple patent might be a biggie (or not)

New Apple patent might be a biggie (or not)It’s been quite the week for Apple. First the ITC banned several HTC smartphones from import in the US (effective April 19), then we heard about a spanking new complaint relating to Samsung’s tablet and smartphone covers (patents are involved, natch).

Now Apple has had yet another patent approved, and it’s potentially vague enough to be a pain in the nuts for rival operating systems.

The patent in question is number 8,082,523 (seriously), or “Portable electronic device with graphical user interface supporting application switching” to use its full title.

The patent description is typically wordy (237 words, to be precise), but essentially it describes a user being on a call, bringing up a list of apps while maintaining the call, selecting another app, and finally tapping an icon that allows the user to go back to the call screen.

That’s a fairly common feature on smartphones, so we’re fully expecting Apple to start various legal proceedings pretty soon.

However, rather than being a sensationalist moron and predicting that this is the end of Android et al, I’ll suggest that Apple’s rivals could address the technique with a simple software update. Boom.

via: CBS News

Read more about: AndroidiOS

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6 comments

Repo  Dec. 22, 2011 at 15:24

Which court grants these patently ridiculous patents (see what I did there? :P ).

I think I'm going to patent breathing or sunlight...

jaybear88  Dec. 22, 2011 at 15:38

Thank God they can't get their hands on this one: http://www.google.com/patents/US6080436

Treab  Dec. 22, 2011 at 16:22

Worthless patent. that one would be crushed in any court as its a technically obvious method.

JanSt / MOD  Dec. 22, 2011 at 17:19

If that patent is granted, ... Pffft Ludicrous!

Treab  Dec. 22, 2011 at 17:40

granted jan...

but a granted patent means nothing.

matt101101 / MOD  Dec. 22, 2011 at 21:46

Ahh don't you love the US patent system?

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