Posts Tagged: "Apple Patent"

Apple innovations in virtual music, seeks patent on fuel cell for portable computing device

The most intriguing patent application we’ve seen recently is Apple’s patent application titled ‘Fuel Cell System to Power a Portable Computing Device.’ It would protect a fuel cell system for a portable computing device comprising a fuel cell stack converting fuel into electrical power, a fuel source for the fuel cell stack and an interface to the portable device which includes a power link providing power to the portable device and a bidirectional communication link providing communication between the portable device and a fuel cell stack’s controller which sends fuel state information to the portable device and receives fuel cell control information. This innovation seeks to incorporate fuel cell electricity generation tech into portable computing devices for which it’s difficult to provide cost-effective and portable fuel cell systems, as the patent application itself points out.

Apple Design Patent Rejected in Reexamination by USPTO

Earlier this month the Central Reexamination Unit of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) issued a non-final rejection of an Apple design patent at the center of their never-ending patent battle with Samsung. The patent in question – U.S. Design Patent D618,677 – covers the appearance of the surface of an electronic device. One new problem Apple now faces with respect to the ‘677 design patent is that the patent examiner has determined that the priority claim made in the patent “must be canceled.”

Apple seeks patents on secure mobile payments and digital music systems

The Apple Pay mobile payment service created by the company should get an important security upgrade through the technology described within U.S. Patent Application No. 20150127549, which is titled Using Biometric Authentication for NFC-Based Payments. The electronic device claime includes a secure element with a payment applet and a processor which is configured to compare local authentication information for the device with stored authentication information. The processor also provides local validation information for the device to allow a payment applet to conduct a financial shopping center servicestransaction. This system relates to secure mobile payments and works without requiring a user to manually input authentication information for each transaction.

Apple and Samsung draw battle lines in the smartwatch sector

The next few months will be important ones for the coming smartwatch revolution. April 24th marks the date that the first Apple Watches will be available for retail sale in America and Apple expects to sell up to 4 million units of the product by the end of June. The arrival of the Apple Watch should be a sizable step forward in terms of state-of-the-art technologies for the smart watch, but it will be impossible to declare a victor until after Samsung has had a chance to release its next-generation digital timepiece, but it will be interesting to watch them duke it out this year.

Apple continues building dominant mobile patent portfolio

In terms of innovation, it’s clear that there is an almost singular focus at Apple on research and development in its long line of mobile electronic devices. Patents issued by the USPTO in recent weeks showcase everything from wrap-around device displays to handset systems which can change modes if a user moves the phone away from his or her ear. Other patents show featured water exposure indicators for portable electronic devices and a method of determining characters that are handwritten on a touch-sensitive screen. Recently published patent applications discuss the improved use of mobile devices for emergency response, including one that details internal smoke detector circuitry for personal electronics.

Software and business methods over half of Google, Microsoft US patents

Software and method patents may appear to have fallen out of favor because of recent court decisions and legislation. However, recent trends indicate that they comprise surprisingly high portions of four US companies’ recent grants. Of the 2,599 US patents granted last year to Google, 1,522, or 59% were in the methods classes. Microsoft, with 2,847 patents received, had 1,575, or 55%, that fall under the heading of methods.

iPod, iPhone and iPad – A Brief History of Apple iProducts

Early on in his career with Apple, Steve Jobs conceived the idea of a personal computing device that a person could keep with them and use to connect wirelessly to other computer services. Almost 25 years later, Apple and Jobs would upend the world of personal computing by launching the iPhone smartphone, and a few years later a tablet computer counterpart, the iPad. According to the most recent sales figures available from Apple corporate analysis website AAPLinvestors.net, the iPhone has achieved lifetime sales of 590.5 million units; Apple has also sold 237.2 million iPads in just over three years since the release of that product. The iPhone has retained mass appeal despite the presence of the iPad and Apple has even reverted to soft launches for new iPad products, evidence of the incredible hold that the iPhone still maintains over Apple’s core consumer base. In the near future, both the iPhone and iPad may exhibit bendable or rollable displays using plastic OLED screen technologies developed by LG Electronics, one of the suppliers of electronic components for the iPhone and iPad.

Apple Patents Focus on Improving iPhone Functionality

Mobile device innovations are still a great area of focus for Apple, and we found a trio of patent applications which could improve functionality in a number of areas for the iPhone or other mobile devices. Methods of receiving personalized suggestions through a mobile device for nearby events or attractions are outlined within U.S. Patent Application No. 20140287780, filed under the title Location-Based Categorical Information Services. This would protect a method of receiving a request from a device for categorical data, which would include location information, for a content item on a map that meets a geographical parameter. This technology is designed to help mobile device users find establishments within their vicinity which are aligned with their personal interests without having to consult a travel guide or visit a tourism office.

Apple Seeks Patent on Lifestyle Companion Fitness System

As always, we start with a close look at one featured patent application, and we were intrigued by one technology designed to encourage group completion of fitness activities. This lifestyle companion system can also suggest fitness activities to users based on personal interviews conducted by the system. Other inventions directed at personalized services, including a method of creating avatars reflecting a user’s current emotional state, are also described in a series of patent applications discussed in today’s column. Apple’s patent filing activities always result in a great deal of patent grants from the USPTO, and recently the company was issued many patents protecting improvements to various software and device hardware products. Improvements to media editing programs for recording voice-overs, a smarter progress bar for conveying project completion information and a processing system for determining that a person’s shoes have become worn out and should be replaced are also protected by recently issued patents.

Apple Seeks Patent on Dynamic Playlist for Digital Content

The featured patent application describes smarter methods of building playlists for digital content, like songs. This system can dynamically update playlists based on a user’s changing taste or if another user with a compatible device walks into the room. We also picked up on a few other patent applications featuring revolutionary technologies, including one microphone headset component that enables voice processing by sending data signals through an owner’s bones and body tissues. Issued patents make up the true strength of any corporation’s intellectual property portfolio, so we wrap up today with a look at Apple’s recently issued patents. We have a trio of patents we’ve noticed that protect some useful software systems for digital media consumption, including one patent that protects a system of renting digital content for a finite amount of time. We also feature a couple of hardware patents, including one protective case with a hinged cover that can selectively cover an iPhone’s touchscreen and a new method of packaging devices so that potential customers can interact with them before buying one.

Apple Patent Applications Focus on Maps, Navigation Apps

Today’s featured patent application describes a system of collecting movement data from mobile devices so as to better compile real-time traffic data for mobile users. This data collection would not interfere with normal use and provides a vast improvement on current methods of providing traffic data. We’ve also noticed a few other patent applications detailing mapping application improvements as well as a method for setting quiet hours on a device to prevent notification sounds at inopportune moments. We also take a close look at some issued patents that lay out some intriguing software and hardware improvements for Apple’s mobile devices. One patent protects a method of detecting hand gestures for interacting with a touchscreen device. Another issued patent describes a system of automatically updating profile images on a user’s device for various contacts. Finally, we noticed a patent to protect a piece of wearable hardware that lets a user view digital content privately through goggles.

Apple Seeks Patent on iPhone No-contact Mode

Our featured patent application today will be music to the ears of many iPhone owners by keeping that device silent at important times. This application would protect a system of designating parameters that would prevent a message notification to be forwarded to a device owner, such as sleep hours or if the phone is in a designated meeting room. Other patent applications discuss a construction method for iPads that better prevents light leakage, a task progress indicator that can convey rich details about a task as well as a method of embedding memorabilia from an author’s book signing into an electronic book file. Apple’s recently issued patents from the USPTO do show a heavy focus on improving music media services. One patents protects a method of browsing through albums by swiping through a digital wheel of album art, while another protects a method of creating playlists automatically based on a single song selection. Another issued patent we decided to take a closer look at describes methods of synchronizing dashboards across electronic devices owned by the same user.

The Power of Portfolio: Strong Design Patents III

Broadening coverage by refiling cases has been a very effective strategy for Apple. The child patent, D593,087, was one of the patents they successfully enforced against Samsung at trial. The grandchild patent, D618,678, is currently being asserted against Samsung at the US International Trade Commission. To add to the complexity of this case, an unknown third party has filed a request for reexamination at the USPTO for D618,678 asserting that this design would have been obvious in light of several similar Japanese phone designs that had not been considered before. If the patent survives the reexamination challenge, then the reexamination could actually strengthen Apple’s portfolio since this patent will have been more severely tested. On the other hand if this patent has difficulty getting allowed again, then the portfolio will be weakened in the eyes of the public while Apple pursues its appeals. An ultimate final determination of invalidity could take years given the numerous levels of appeal Apple has available.

Apple Patent to Replace the “Back” Button with “Page Snapback”

This past week was another very prolific one for Apple, as the California-based electronic device developer received 35 patents and had another 36 applications published by the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. Many patent applications were concerned with the ways computer users interact with their systems, and we see a number of upgrades to graphical user interfaces coming for device address books and online stores. Of the patents issued to Apple, one protects a webpage retrieval method that can help browsers save a lot of time while searching for information on the Internet.

Apple Awarded Processing Simulcast Data Patent

Yet again, it was another busy week for Apple Inc. at the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office, as the California-based electronics developer received 48 patents and another 20 published applications for prospective patents.
A number of these applications describe upgrades to supporting components on Apple devices, including a new configuration for a device vibrator and a better system of illuminating keyboard keys. One of the more intriguing Apple patents awarded this week protects a system of displaying metadata to users extracted from radio broadcasts.


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