Apple lands slide-to-unlock patent blow on Motorola
Android mobe maker needs Ice Cream Sandwich ASAP
Motorola's Android handsets are infringing Apple's slide-to-unlock patent, in Germany at least, though an appeal may be lodged.
Apple hasn't said it will enforce the Munich ruling - a permanent injunction - as it would need to post a bond against failure at appeal, but the judge is clear that Motorola needs to find a different way to unlock handsets as patent-court-lurker Florian Mueller reports.
The ruling does not cover Motorola's Xoom tablet, as that uses a drag-finger-outside-circle unlocking which is sufficiently different from Apple's approach, but Motorola's Android handsets do implement an iPhone-like swipe mechanism, and one which Motorola may be forced to change.
Ice Cream Sandwich, the next version of Android, can be unlocked just by looking at the camera, but earlier this week Motorola admitted that ICS updates are still at least three months off, and US updates to the flagship RAZR don't even have a schedule yet (though Europe should see it later this year).
So any enforcement by Apple would require Motorola to push out updates changing the experience of unlocking the phone, something users have become very familiar with, but Apple may decide to bide its time and wait for an appeal, perhaps with the hope of catching the Xoom in the net next time around. ®
Re: Re: Jeez
Actually yes, my old Windows phone used to be slide to unlock.
Re: So next time I undo the bolt on my door
This, in spades.
The concept of a bolt being thrown/retracted to lock/open something is very old news. Just because a graphical idiom is used to perform the action electornically should not be patentable in any sane work.
Copyright the graphics used? Yes, up to a point (one slidey button thing is going to look pretty similar to other slidey button things)
Trademark it? Hrmm...maybe but doubtful.
Patent? No - sod off.
I have an idea...I am going to patent a "tumbler" graphic that one rotates left/right to enter a code that unlocks the device. No one has ever done that before. There is no prior art. The patent is all mine. ALL MINE!!!!!!!!
So next time I undo the bolt on my door
I need to pay Apple?
I assume Google will be patenting look to unlock which is a much better system long term.