or Connect
AppleInsider › Forums › General › General Discussion › Apple accused of violating multi-touch patent in ITC complaint
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Apple accused of violating multi-touch patent in ITC complaint

post #1 of 53
Thread Starter 
A Taiwanese maker of chips and touchscreens has asked the U.S. International Trade Commission to ban the import and sale of Apple products for alleged violation of a multi-touch patent.

Elan Microelectronics hopes the commission will ban the sale of a number of Apple products, including the forthcoming iPad, along with the iPhone and iPod touch. According to Bloomberg, Elan has accused Apple of "knowingly and deliberately" using the company's technology and infringing on a patent it owns.

Other products alleged by Elan to infringe on its patent are the MacBook and Magic Mouse, both of which employ multi-touch technology. Elan reportedly owns a patent for detecting the simultaneous presence of two or more fingers.

The ITC now must decide whether it will investigate the claims made by Elan. If it chooses to do so, the investigation could take up to 15 months.

Elan previously sued Apple last April over the same patents. The company has already won a related suit against Synaptics, which is best-known for making trackpads as well as earlier forms of the conventional iPod scroll wheel.

The latest ITC complaint is one of a number the commission has before it that involve Apple. Early this month, Apple sued HTC in a complaint with the ITC, alleging that the rival handset maker infringed on 20 patents related to the iPhone's user interface, including multi-touch.

In addition, in recent months the iPhone maker has sued Nokia, and is also being sued by the Finnish handset maker. The ITC has agreed to look into both companies' complaints of patent infringement.

The ITC has also begun investigating claims made by Kodak against Apple. The camera company has alleged that Apple is in violation of patents that relate to the previewing of images, and processing them at different resolutions.
post #2 of 53
There are no winners in a multi-touch battle.

Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

Reply

Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

Reply
post #3 of 53
yogi said it, "deja vu all over again"
post #4 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

A Taiwanese maker of chips and touchscreens has asked the U.S. International Trade Commission to ban the import and sale of Apple products for alleged violation of a multi-touch patent.

Elan Microelectronics hopes the commission will ban the sale of a number of Apple products, including the forthcoming iPad, along with the iPhone and iPod touch. According to Bloomberg, Elan has accused Apple of "knowingly and deliberately" using the company's technology and infringing on a patent it owns.

Other products alleged by Elan to infringe on its patent are the MacBook and Magic Mouse, both of which employ multi-touch technology. Elan reportedly owns a patent for detecting the simultaneous presence of two or more fingers.

The ITC now must decide whether it will investigate the claims made by Elan. If it chooses to do so, the investigation could take up to 15 months.

Elan previously sued Apple last April over the same patents. The company has already won a related suit against Synaptics, which is best-known for making trackpads as well as earlier forms of the conventional iPod scroll wheel.

The latest ITC complaint is one of a number the commission has before it that involve Apple. Early this month, Apple sued HTC in a complaint with the ITC, alleging that the rival handset maker infringed on 20 patents related to the iPhone's user interface, including multi-touch.

In addition, in recent months the iPhone maker has sued Nokia, and is also being sued by the Finnish handset maker. The ITC has agreed to look into both companies' complaints of patent infringement.

The ITC has also begun investigating claims made by Kodak against Apple. The camera company has alleged that Apple is in violation of patents that relate to the previewing of images, and processing them at different resolutions.

These patent whores will never give up, will they? They think that Apple is easy pickings!

The fact is, Apple is the most innovative company in the history of the world. Edison's got NOTHING on Steve!

So these patent whores need to go away and innovate, or just keep quiet!
post #5 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

There are no winners in a multi-touch battle.

Apple news sites
post #6 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleRulez View Post

These patent whores will never give up, will they?

If they're whores, who are the johns? Who are the pimps? Please elaborate.
post #7 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

There are no winners in a multi-touch battle.


Why do I hear the phrase "Quit touching me!" and kids come to mind?
post #8 of 53

Life is too short to drink bad coffee.

Reply

Life is too short to drink bad coffee.

Reply
post #9 of 53
There are billions of dollars at stake here. The iPad is going to touch off a huge new market worth untold billions in profits. Everybody and their brother is trying to get their piece of this pie. Obviously this company doesn't really want to ban the sale of Apple products. They want a slice of the pie if they get some legal entity to agree with them and somehow make it stick. Same goes for everybody in the game, including Apple. The MacBook and iPhone have been around several years now. Makes one wonder why these suits are just popping up all of a sudden like, doesn't it? Could it be that everybody sees this new mass market as their ticket to massive profits by playing the lamprey sucker fish and attaching themselves to Apple's (the shark's) underbelly?
post #10 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleRulez View Post

These patent whores will never give up, will they? They think that Apple is easy pickings!

Actually, this company doesn't look like a patent whore. From a quick look at their website, they seem to actually manufacture or create products.
post #11 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleRulez View Post

These patent whores will never give up, will they? They think that Apple is easy pickings!

The fact is, Apple is the most innovative company in the history of the world. Edison's got NOTHING on Steve!

So these patent whores need to go away and innovate, or just keep quiet!

That's right, Einstein, Oppenheimer, Hawking are all clearly inferior to Steve, who is the only person in the history of the universe that has ever done anything remotely innovate or novel. We should pass patent reform that exempts Apple from any sort of patent suit because Apple so innovative. We all know that Kodak is a patent troll and that Apple invented photography as well as digital photography and thus Kodak has no basis whatsoever for suing Apple.
post #12 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleRulez View Post

... or just keep quiet!

just like a couple of bed-trolls should be doing here in AI. Clam up iGenius.
post #13 of 53
Elan reportedly owns A patent for detecting the simultaneous presence of two or more fingers.
OR
Elan reportedly owns THE patent for detecting the simultaneous presence of two or more fingers.
post #14 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by sflocal View Post

just like a couple of bed-trolls should be doing here in AI. Clam up iGenius.

What you didn't add AppleRulez to your ignore list?
無心 The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders., Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit__Edward Abbey
Reply
無心 The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders., Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit__Edward Abbey
Reply
post #15 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by sflocal View Post

just like a couple of bed-trolls should be doing here in AI. Clam up iGenius.


Prolific little jerk too. He joined 3/25/2010 and is averaging almost 14 posts a day since that date. I wonder how long till the powers that be notice the pattern?
post #16 of 53
i dunno - seems to me there must be some sort of prior art in regards to determining whether any given human being has more than one finger.

not sure the specifics in this case - but in general I thought a patent was supposed to be for a specific implementation of an idea - not the general idea itself.

For example - I cannot file a patent along the lines of - a device for the apprehension of and subsequent detainment of members of the order of Rodentia and expect to sue anyway who makes a mouse trap. On the other hand, if I have very specific idea of how to combine a spring and a clamp and a bar and base etc to effect said apprehension and detainment - then I can get a patent on a specific design for a mouse trap - regardless of whether I even in fact actually manufacture such a device.

If someone decides to make a mouse trap that uses my design but they change the physical dimensions and use plastic instead of metal for this part or that then I may have a patent suit. however, if my design is a spring loaded bait triggered thin metal bar I would not expect to be able to sue the guy who comes up with a two part plastic jaw with angled interlocking teeth triggered by a floor plate with a concealed spring instead of a bait loaded trigger.

so in the case of multi-touch - simply having a design that detects and responds to two simultaneous inputs, I would think, is insufficient basis for a patent whereas some specific design criteria for how the input is detected, how it is processed, how false positives are filtered out, etc or perhaps the circuitry or components required then okay - if you designed - even if only on paper and filed with the patent office a specific system, which someone then COPIED your design you have a case - but if they only "copied" the idea in a completely different engineering solution then I don't think there is any case - especially if there is no evidence of any awareness of your design.

A bit grayer in my mind would be a case where someone sees another's idea - even if only on paper - and sets about creating a functional duplicate which may or may not share any underlying similarity then what?

Of course this sort of debate has been going on since at least the invention of Calculus by Newton and Leibniz - but then that was more a plagiarism sort of thing - and in fact the earliest forms of calculus predated them both by about 3000 years or so.

In short - I don't think you can patent a generic idea - and should not be able to sue another party for having an idea that resembles yours. And I do think many of these cases start out as, hey that idea kinda resembles mine and mine is going no where so I'll hop on the gravy train.
post #17 of 53
It says Elan previously sued Apple over the same patents. What was the disposition of the original suit and why are they suing again?

Apart from that it is kind of interesting that that Elan is suing Apple so soon after Apple sued HTC over similar matters. Makes you wonder if there is something going on between Elan and HTC.
A.k.a. AppleHead on other forums.
Reply
A.k.a. AppleHead on other forums.
Reply
post #18 of 53
Does anyone know why these companies decide to file so many years after the patent has been filed? This Elan patent was from 2007. MS is getting sued over a 2005 patent and so on..
Does it simply take that long to determine whether that device is using the same patented tech?
"One who forms a judgement on any point but cannot explain it clearly, might as well never have thought at all on the subject." Pericles
Reply
"One who forms a judgement on any point but cannot explain it clearly, might as well never have thought at all on the subject." Pericles
Reply
post #19 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post

Prolific little jerk too. He joined 3/25/2010 and is averaging almost 14 posts a day since that date. I wonder how long till the powers that be notice the pattern?

I guess iGenius was caught early, solipsism' post http://forums.appleinsider.com/showt...=108066&page=2.

If its true that if you post while you are BANNED you are BANNED forever, then when is going to happen to AppleRulez. The troll is on my ignore list but it keeps coming up when other people respond to its post.
無心 The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders., Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit__Edward Abbey
Reply
無心 The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders., Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit__Edward Abbey
Reply
post #20 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by sflocal View Post

just like a couple of bed-trolls should be doing here in AI. Clam up iGenius.


I don't think it is either iG or TS. Those guys were a little sharper. This guy is more of a simpleton, more in the vein of MacTripper.

Life is too short to drink bad coffee.

Reply

Life is too short to drink bad coffee.

Reply
post #21 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleRulez View Post

<SNIP>

The fact is, Apple is the most innovative company in the history of the world. Edison's got NOTHING on Steve!

<SNIP>

That's true, Edison stole much of his technology (see lightbulb), but Apple is so much better at it.....
post #22 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by grking View Post

That's right, Einstein, Oppenheimer, Hawking are all clearly inferior to Steve, who is the only person in the history of the universe that has ever done anything remotely innovate or novel. We should pass patent reform that exempts Apple from any sort of patent suit because Apple so innovative. We all know that Kodak is a patent troll and that Apple invented photography as well as digital photography and thus Kodak has no basis whatsoever for suing Apple.

That should keep my AAPL stock moving up.

Do you think Steve Jobs and Al Gore could talk to Obama and his Dem buddies, esp Pelosi in California? They're a majority and with the right maneuvers, they can pass any law they want, right?
"you will know the truth, and the truth will
set you free."
Reply
"you will know the truth, and the truth will
set you free."
Reply
post #23 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by lilgto64 View Post

For example - I cannot file a patent along the lines of - a device for the apprehension of and subsequent detainment of members of the order of Rodentia and expect to sue anyway who makes a mouse trap. On the other hand, if I have very specific idea of how to combine a spring and a clamp and a bar and base etc to effect said apprehension and detainment - then I can get a patent on a specific design for a mouse trap - regardless of whether I even in fact actually manufacture such a device.

If someone decides to make a mouse trap that uses my design but they change the physical dimensions and use plastic instead of metal for this part or that then I may have a patent suit. however, if my design is a spring loaded bait triggered thin metal bar I would not expect to be able to sue the guy who comes up with a two part plastic jaw with angled interlocking teeth triggered by a floor plate with a concealed spring instead of a bait loaded trigger.

Seems like you've thought much about Rodentia.

Seriously, you're right about patents but nobody really knows until the court rules.
"you will know the truth, and the truth will
set you free."
Reply
"you will know the truth, and the truth will
set you free."
Reply
post #24 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin Huber View Post

It says Elan previously sued Apple over the same patents. What was the disposition of the original suit and why are they suing again?

Apart from that it is kind of interesting that that Elan is suing Apple so soon after Apple sued HTC over similar matters. Makes you wonder if there is something going on between Elan and HTC.

Elan sued Apple in Federal court in April 2009. The suit is in process, though Apple hasn't mentioned it in its 10-K/Q. This process can take more than 3 years to come to a decision.

This suit is via the International Trade Commission. It's basically a second path, and it goes a bit faster than the other one - projected about 16 months total. So companies are beginning to go this way, or take both paths. Nokia sued Apple using both avenues and Apple countersued using both. Apple sued HTC using both avenues.
"you will know the truth, and the truth will
set you free."
Reply
"you will know the truth, and the truth will
set you free."
Reply
post #25 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shintocam View Post

That's true, Edison stole much of his technology (see lightbulb), but Apple is so much better at it.....

A vast overstatement, but what the hell, close enough for an AI thread I guess.
Please don't be insane.
Reply
Please don't be insane.
Reply
post #26 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleRulez View Post

These patent whores will never give up, will they? They think that Apple is easy pickings!

The fact is, Apple is the most innovative company in the history of the world. Edison's got NOTHING on Steve!

So these patent whores need to go away and innovate, or just keep quiet!

Typical Apple fan response. OK for Apple to sue everyone but let someone sue Apple..

Face it, there are no honorable among the business community anymore it's everyone out to get everyone else.
post #27 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin Huber View Post

It says Elan previously sued Apple over the same patents. What was the disposition of the original suit and why are they suing again?

Apart from that it is kind of interesting that that Elan is suing Apple so soon after Apple sued HTC over similar matters. Makes you wonder if there is something going on between Elan and HTC.

Interesting question. Also, I thought that Apple was just recently (finally) granted the multitouch patent?
post #28 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheShepherd View Post

Typical Apple fan response. OK for Apple to sue everyone but let someone sue Apple..

Face it, there are no honorable among the business community anymore it's everyone out to get everyone else.

That response wasn't actually from an Apple fan.


Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

Interesting question. Also, I thought that Apple was just recently (finally) granted the multitouch patent?

Yes.

http://news.cnet.com/8301-13579_3-10150436-37.html
post #29 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post

Yes.

http://news.cnet.com/8301-13579_3-10150436-37.html

Thanks. Then I wonder what this suit is all about. Maybe it will be tossed.
post #30 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by FineTunes View Post

If its true that if you post while you are BANNED you are BANNED forever, then when is going to happen to AppleRulez. The troll is on my ignore list but it keeps coming up when other people respond to its post.

It is not possible to post when you are banned. The AppleInsider forum software is THAT good!
post #31 of 53
Quote:
Does anyone know why these companies decide to file so many years after the patent has been filed? This Elan patent was from 2007. MS is getting sued over a 2005 patent and so on..
Does it simply take that long to determine whether that device is using the same patented tech?

Pure economics. It costs around a minimum of $1 million to prosecute a patent claim. There has to be enough economic damage to justify these costs as economic damages (lost sales, portion of margins earned by the infringer, etc. ) are the typical judgement given the successful plaintiff. It takes time to establish that there are large enough economic damages to justify the enforcement attempt.
post #32 of 53
Everyone know Apple invented multi-touch and has patent. Who are these patent trolls???
post #33 of 53
This is an excellent article to read up on Apple Multi-touch patents.

http://www.patentlyapple.com/patentl...echnology.html
post #34 of 53
I've read the patent and INAL but this patent seems to be describing a method for manufacturing in touch screens:The present invention relates to a combination circuit for detecting the layout in a flat panel with thin film transistor processed during array manufacturing process. This method conducts in a prior art short-ring layout and shorting-bar layoutso that the designing of the panel layout will not limited to the detection facility so as to promote the yield and reduce the cost.

I'm not sure how Apple would be violating the patent since they aren't manufacturing the screens but sourcing them from someone else. Unless the method Apple's supplier is using is exactly like the one described by the patent and Apple designed the touch screen method, I don't see how Apple is on the hook. I would think the supplier would be the one under the gun.
post #35 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleRulez View Post

It is not possible to post when you are banned. The AppleInsider forum software is THAT good!

What are you getting out of these discussions? What does being banned from a forum like this say to you?

There's more to life than coming here to start arguments over nothing. If you can point out genuine talking points then go ahead, but I'm pretty sure you don't get banned for that (I'm still here afterall.)
post #36 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Millmoss View Post

A vast overstatement, but what the hell, close enough for an AI thread I guess.

That is funniest comment I have ever read on any forum.
Pity the agnostic dyslectic. They spend all their time contemplating the existence of dog.
Reply
Pity the agnostic dyslectic. They spend all their time contemplating the existence of dog.
Reply
post #37 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrkoolaid View Post

Everyone know Apple invented multi-touch and has patent. Who are these patent trolls???

Another Techstud/iGenius/iLuv alt.

post #38 of 53
It's ironic that people in this forum praise apple for suing over multitouch, but when they get sued over multitouch, then the opponent is evil and a patent troll.

Hypocrisy is strong in this one.
Fragmentation is not just something we have to acknowledge and accept. Fragmentation is something that we deal with every day, and we must accept it as a fact of the iPhone platform experience.

Ste...
Reply
Fragmentation is not just something we have to acknowledge and accept. Fragmentation is something that we deal with every day, and we must accept it as a fact of the iPhone platform experience.

Ste...
Reply
post #39 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleRulez View Post

These patent whores will never give up, will they? They think that Apple is easy pickings!

The fact is, Apple is the most innovative company in the history of the world. Edison's got NOTHING on Steve!

Edison had 1093 patents approved and had filed another 600+ which were not approved or never followed up on and completed.
Apple has ~2000.
Most of Edison's were actually unique and pcompletely different than anything else (even if he stole the ideas, he got them working ).
Most of Apple's are similar to other patents though obviously different enough to get approved.

Most of Edison's patents were for actual devices he designed and built himself.
Many of Apple's patents are for a certain way of doing something and most (all?) include more than one person.
post #40 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Millmoss View Post

A vast overstatement, but what the hell, close enough for an AI thread I guess.

Yes I know - i could not find the appropriate hyperbole emoticon....
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: General Discussion
AppleInsider › Forums › General › General Discussion › Apple accused of violating multi-touch patent in ITC complaint