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Apple granted 'slide to unlock' patent for touchscreen devices

26 October, 2011 | Read the news | Post your comment
Apple granted 'slide to unlock' patent for touchscreen devices - read the full textBack in December 2005, more than a year before the first iPhone was announced, Apple had filed for a patent for their revolutionary 'slide to unlock' gesture for touchscreen devices. The patent was described as follows. A device with a touch-sensitive display may be unlocked via gestures...


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So, does the screen lock feature must meet all the patent laws inclusively to violate the patent or are each sentences describing mutually exclusive features of the patent? (How do I make this sentence parallel?)

That would make a huge difference in the effectiveness of this patent.

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  • 2011-10-26 09:21
  • qbY{

Got lots of money?? Got any obvious idea??

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  • 2011-10-26 09:20
  • vI7J

> In reply to Max @ 2011-10-26 08:59 from Mvvy - click to readMax, I couldn't agree with you more!

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  • 2011-10-26 09:19
  • mD3f

Neonode N1m had slide to unlock in an actual touchscreen phone in 2005.

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  • 2011-10-26 09:19
  • PSwd

> In reply to Max @ 2011-10-26 08:59 from Mvvy - click to readI am not an expert, but just thinking about it, probably some of the below was part of it:

1. It is not the only way to unlock - you can unlock with just touch itself, touching different points, other things than a straight line

2. You can unlock using hardware - older phones had a power key plus other key combo

3. You can unlock using multi-touch etc two fingers downward etc

I may be wrong in the above, but the patent may have been granted, because slide to lock is not the only way to unlock, and is unique enough to differentiate itself from other methods.

It is however, possibly the simplest, and the most unique (at the time), which is definitely why Apple went ahead and patented it.

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  • 2011-10-26 09:13
  • mTWB

"Also, we're not sure if Apple can go after them because even though Apple filed for the patent back in 2005, it was only granted today."
Of course they could. Patents give protection from the date of earliest filing, not from the date they are granted.

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  • 2011-10-26 09:12
  • Am9Y

Not good, not good man. This is ridiculous. Who approves this kind of patent? Very soon Apple going to file a petetion against every fruit store and make them to rename Apple. Predifined path...?
Is it me or this patent really sounds patheticaly funny. Anyway Congrats to Apple. Another rocket in their battleship to fire other Mobile manufacturers.

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  • 2011-10-26 09:11
  • s86R

> In reply to Anonymous @ 2011-10-26 08:59 from UD}D - click to readwhat national interest?
both google and apple are us companies.

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  • 2011-10-26 09:07
  • ny28

Patents can take a long time to be granted. Slide to lock, while taken for granted now as it is so 'obvious', was really exciting when it was demo-ed with the first iPhone. Reason was it showcased the smoothness of iPhone's capacitive touchscreen.

Most devices at the time were resistive touchscreens, and with stylus, so did not have that touch-sensitivity, which 'slide-to-lock' further emphasized. iPhone did not invent touchscreen, but it is very hard to deny that it is the reason that it is so popular today.

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  • 2011-10-26 09:05
  • mTWB

goooo apple

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  • 2011-10-26 09:05
  • fvIG

On the latest firmware update for my Nokia X3-02 this slide to unlock feature came with it, does this mean that Apple is also going to sue Nokia for the use?

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  • 2011-10-26 09:03
  • PrJ1

Apple shud not go aft the already released device, considering the patent has been granted only now. They can better ask other manufacturers to roll out updates to change their existing ui, maybe in some said time frame.
As far as, yet to be released handsets r concerned, apple will surely be going head-hunting after them.

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  • 2011-10-26 09:00
  • uv7i

The things one can apparently get a patent for today are thoroughly ludicrous. Can I then patent "moving along predefined paved surface" (streets) please, and start charging every pedestrian royalties...?

EVERY SINGLE INTERACTION with a device comprised of nothing but a touchscreen is one of two things: either a touch or a drag. Yes, that includes operations like unlocking. How the f#$* can something blatantly obvious and unavoidable like that get a patent?!?

You know what...? Let SkyNet come, we deserve it. I'll have not a single objection, provided it promises to nuke from orbit the offices of all the bureaucrats first. I'll go get the popcorn...

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  • 2011-10-26 08:59
  • Mvvy

After six years, suddenly this patent is approved.
I can see the trend. I guess it's all about protecting interest (national, eh).

Apple is already feeling the heat... the competition is already up ahead.

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  • 2011-10-26 08:59
  • UD}D

Apple now go and sue each and every andriod manufaturer on the earth and i will laugh at them

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  • 2011-10-26 08:58
  • tY@q

How the hell do you even get a patent on this????

like wtf?

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  • 2011-10-26 08:57
  • wgh9

the N9 Swipe concept doesn't fit that bill thats nice too bad for Android though they really went over board with stealing other people stuff.

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  • 2011-10-26 08:57
  • 3CfK

android should change from "slide to unlock" to "drag to unlock"

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  • 2011-10-26 08:49
  • PI5L

This is so unreasonable. will the name of the fruit on the street going to be in trouble because have the same name with them?

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  • 2011-10-26 08:47
  • 2mA5


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  • 2011-10-26 08:46
  • 7CfQ

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