Items tagged with patents

Samsung has proven it is not afraid to venture into new and innovative smartphone designs, hence the Galaxy Fold with its foldable screen. In addition, a recently discovered patent application reveals that Samsung is at least considering a smartphone with a full front display that wraps around to the backside of the device. This concept essentially yields a dual screen setup, in terms of being able to see things on both the front and back of the phone. However, it's not actually two displays—it is one continuous screen with three parts that merge together. They consist of the following: A full front display A curved top section A back display that covers three quarters of the rear A single... Read more...
There are a couple of challenges facing smartphone designers at the moment. One is the notch at the top of the display, a concept introduced by Andy Rubin and his Essential Phone, and later popularized by Apple and its iPhone X. The other being able to embed a fingerprint sensor into the display itself. It looks like Samsung is working to tackle both challenges. Samsung is not a fan of the notch, a concept it's repeatedly mocked at the expense of Apple. That's why the company's Galaxy S9 and Galaxy Note 9—it's two most recent flagship handsets—emerged with a full-length border across the top. However, Samsung is definitely interested in offering a truly bezel-free phone. Great news!... Read more...
There is another wrinkle in the ongoing dispute between Apple and Qualcomm over the issue of patents used in the former's iPhone devices. Previously Apple claimed Qualcomm was "unfairly...charging royalties for technologies they have nothing to do with," and more recently, the company accused the chipmaker of "selecting asserting its patents," only targeting Apple devices containing Intel chipsets. Now Apple is trying a different legal tactic—it is asking the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) to invalidate four of Qualcomm's patents. It's an interesting legal maneuver, and one that would render moot the dispute of whether or not Apple is infringing on Qualcomm's patents... Read more...
The latest in the ongoing legal saga between Apple and Samsung is that the latter owes the former $539 million for infringing on smartphone patents, a US jury has found after deliberating for more than a week. Samsung already paid Apple $399 million to cover infringement claims on some of the patents that have been in dispute, so should the verdict survive an inevitable appeal, the South Korean electronics maker would effectively have pay nearly $140 million more to Apple. "We believe deeply in the value of design, and our teams work tirelessly to create innovative products that delight our customers," Apple said in a statement. "This case has always been about more than money. Apple ignited... Read more...
Apple has filed a patent application with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) that provides some insight into how the company plans to tackle navigation. The patent explains how Apple intends to make autonomous driving more efficient by reducing the need to constantly remake detailed maps. It also serves of further confirmation of Apple's plan to compete in the autonomous vehicle category—this is Apple's first patent in the self-driving car field. In the patent, Apple explains that today's autonomous vehicles use a combination of static information, such as detail maps of various routes, and real-time data captured by sensors as a self-driving car proceeds on a route.... Read more...
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has granted Activision a patent for an online matchmaking scheme that is designed to encourage players to spend money on in-game items. By matching players with purchased items against non-paying players, the assumption is that both players will have incentive to spend money upgrading their characters' abilities and weapons. "A system and method is provided that drives microtransactions in multiplayer video games. The system may include a microtransaction arrange matches to influence game-related purchases. For instance, the system may match a more expert/marquee player with a junior player to encourage the junior player to make game-related... Read more...
Imagine if your smartphone could identify cracks in its display and then heal itself, much like your own body does when its suffers a scrape or bruise. It may sound like something out of a science fiction movie, but perhaps it is not all that far fetched. Motorola has been granted a patent by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) for that very thing, and how it works is pretty interesting.Motorola notes in its patent application that smartphones are becoming more prevalent and that one of the drawbacks is how easily touchscreen displays can suffer damage. In many cases, a cracked or shattered display panel renders the entire phone inoperable, depending on the extent of the damage.... Read more...
It has been more than four years since the introduction of the HTC First, otherwise known as the Facebook Phone. It ultimately flopped and since then we have not heard from Facebook about taking another stab at the hardware market, but never say never. A patent application filed by Facebook with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) outlines a "modular electromechanical device" with a processor module and other interchangeable parts. "The modular electromechanical device includes a chassis and a plurality of functional modules that can be connected to the chassis," Facebook explains in its patent application. "Each module is associated with a different functionality. The functionality... Read more...
Apple and Nokia have made nice on a patent dispute, putting an end to what could have been contentious litigation. Nokia had actually sued Apple at the end of last year after failing to convince the Cupertino outfit to renew expiring licensing agreements that were inked back in 2011. At the time, Apple accused Nokia of morphing into a "patent troll," claiming the once top seller of cellular phones was trying to "extort money" for technologies it did not own. The strong rhetoric from Apple painted the company as a champion of the people. "We are standing up for inventors everywhere by fighting this flagrant anticompetitive practice," Apple told Bloomberg at the time. But that is all water under... Read more...
No other company is more active in securing patents in the United States than IBM. The company has led the charge each and every year for nearly the past two and a half decades and this year set the record for most patents in a single year with a total of 8,088 patents granted to its investors. Among them were over 2,700 cognitive and cloud computing patents, though the totality of it all covered a wide range of technologies, including artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, and areas IBM identified as being strategic ones for future growth. IBM's record setting year breaks down to more than 22 patents being granted per day in 2016. No other company was in contention to beat IBM for the most... Read more...
Nokia, once the top seller of cellular phones in what feels like a lifetime ago, is suing Apple over claims that its popular iPhone handsets infringe on several mobile patents owned by the Finnish company. The lawsuit is a result of Nokia failing to convince Apple to renew licensing agreements inked in 2011 that are about to expire. Nokia sought to extend those agreements, and had Apple been willing, there would be no lawsuit. Having sold off its handset business, many wondered if Nokia would turn to more aggressively pursuing patent agreements and litigation. A sign of things to come might have been hinted at when Nokia purchased Alcatel-Lucent's hardware portfolio for $16.6 billion last year,... Read more...
Nintendo of America CEO Reggis Fils-Aime was pretty lukewarm on the idea of bringing virtual reality gaming to the masses when he lasted addressed the topic, saying last June that VR technology is too expensive and the audience too small at this point in time. That might be true, but don't rule out VR gaming on the Nintendo's upcoming Switch console that is slated for release in a few months. Around the same time Fils-Aime was making those remarks, Nintendo was busy filing a patent with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office that shows the Switch being paired with what looks to be a VR headset of some sort. To be clear, this is just one part of the lengthy patent application showing a potential... Read more...
It appears that Apple is bound and determined to improve the keyboard on its MacBook Pro system in some way, shape, or form. Exactly how remains to be seen. We've heard rumors of Apple swapping out the top row of Function keys for touch sensitive control that display icons based on the app a person is using, but that might not be all it has up its sleeve. A newly published patent application from Apple describes a MacBook keyboard that would allow users to adjust the sensitivity of the keys. Apple correctly surmises in its patent application that "certain users may prefer certain keyboards (and/or keys) to have specific electromechanical properties," further noting that some users might have... Read more...
We may never which came first, the chicken or the egg, but if it comes as any consolation the highest court in the land has agreed to settle a longstanding and tired dispute between Apple and Samsung over smartphones. Specifically, the United States Supreme Court will decide how much of a $399 million patent infringement award Apple is entitled to. This is a case that's been weaving through the court system for the past six years. Apple sued Samsung in 2010 for patent infringement, saying the South Korean electronics maker copied the look and feel of its iPhone handset. Apple ultimately won its suit, with jurors in 2012 awarding Apple a whopping $1.05 billion in damages. That amount was later... Read more...
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