patent

Apple up to its old tricks: calls for a ban on 10 Samsung phones in Germany

Stop me if you've heard this one before. After battling nearly every major Android OEM for the better part of 2011, Apple seems to be wasting no time in bringing its litigious streak into 2012. Bloomberg reports that it's petitioning German courts for an outright sales ban on 10 Samsung smartphones, including the popular Galaxy S II. Apple's objections have to do with its design patents, which won it an injunction against the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 last year.

Apple applies for “Face and Presence Detection” patent — Android laughs

I'm not really sure where to start on this one other than oh wait -- Android already has the feature. It's called "Face Unlock" and is available on the Samsung Galaxy Nexus within Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. Just like our friendly source over at Phandroid I don't really want to simply sit here and bash Apple but I can't help but do so a little bit with this latest "innovation" and patent they've applied for.

HTC fights back against IPCom in harassment case

A month ago corporate patent troll intellectual property specialist IPCom won a major case against HTC in Germany, which seems to be a downright patent hotbed lately. The court ruled that IPCom's 3G technology patent was being illegally used in HTC's phones (and by extension, pretty much every cell phone in Europe) and and now a sales ban against HTC devices looms. But IPCom jumped the gun a bit on the ruling, and started harassing retailers for selling HTC phones immediately. HTC countersued and (wait for it) secured an injunction, keeping the trolls from further bothering retailers.

German court tells Apple to cool it, Galaxy Tab 10.1N injunction unlikely

When Apple's patent case against Samsung in Germany led to a total sales injunction against the Galaxy Tab 10.1, Samsung released a revised version named the Galaxy Tab 10.1N. The updated hardware altered the design and branding of the tablet in order to avoid violating Apple's design patents, most notably with a set of front-facing speakers that flanked the screen. Apparently it wasn't good enough for Apple, and continuing in their worldwide crusade against all things Android they petitioned the court for yet another sales injunction in November. Reuters reports that the judge in the case has indicated that the updated hardware is sufficiency dissimilar to the iPad, and Apple's design patents are not being infringed.

What does it take to stop an Apple lawsuit? Build a horrible device

As part of Apple's patent case against Samsung in the US, it couldn't just simply object to the Galaxy Tab 10.1. Apple had to submit alternatives for Samsung to follow which would allow it exemption from their overly vague design patents, and The Verge got their hands on some of the redacted documents. So what did Apple suggest to end Samsung's legal trouble? Make a device that no one would want to use.

Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1N still under attack by Apple

Uh oh folks, it looks like Apple isn't ready to stop just yet and apparently the new Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1N that Samsung released in Germany specifically to avoid Apple's lawsuits didn't manage to escape. Samsung has been under some heavy attack in Germany, Australia and other parts of the world for the Galaxy Tab 10.1 because Apple claims it infringes on their patents and design. Today Apple seeks another injunction on the new Tab 10.1N and a court date has been set.

Google patents pattern unlock screen, shows new lock screen possibilities

Let Apple keep its one-function slide to unlock - Android's been doing it better since day one. And not just in the basic screen unlock - the pattern lock screen that replaces a PIN or password with a custom 9-dot pattern is a popular way for security-conscious users to quickly and easily access their phone. Now Google has been granted a patent on that particular action, and one more for good measure.

Barnes & Noble reveals Microsoft’s Android patents in detail

Last week Barnes & Noble lobbied United States regulators to investigate Microsoft, on the basis that its lawsuits and licensing agreements with Android OEMs constituted monopolistic behavior. The first fruit of this effort is a detailed look at the patents that Microsoft has been using to pressure manufacturers into licensing deals worth hundreds of millions of dollars. Barnes & Noble seems determined to keep from paying Microsoft for its Nook line of e-readers and tablets.

Apple beats Australian retailers into submission over Galaxy Tab sales

A while back we told you about independent Australian retailers refusing to honor the ruling from Apple's civil case against Samsung. A small number of independent shops and websites skirted the sales ban on the Galaxy Tab 10.1 by importing them directly from China without buying them from Samsung first. Well it looks like Apple's legal reach (not to mention gall) knows no bounds: the company has halted sales at all but one of the "rogue" retailers, in some cases using threatening letters to convince them of their position.

Barnes & Noble fires back at Microsoft, calls for investigation

At least one manufacturer isn't kowtowing to Microsoft's Android licensing push: Barnes & Noble is actively fighting Microsoft's patent litigation in court. As an added bonus, the bookseller has urged US regulators to investigate Microsoft's patents and the claims therein. B&N asserts that Microsoft is trying to drive up the price of the Android devices it competes with, thereby making its own Windows Phone 7 more attractive to manufacturers and consumers.