Apple's Flagship Multi-Touch Patent Has Been Tentatively Invalidated

Apple has quite a few patents. Steve Jobs alone had 313 patents to his name. There's one key one however, the '949 multi-touch patent, sometimes known as the Steve Jobs patent, and the USPTO just tentatively rejected all 20 of its claims.

This tentative rejection was first reported by Foss Patents and while it is only tentative, it goes to show there could be some fissures and cracks in the flagship patent Apple has been wielding. The one that claims a "touch screen device, method, and graphical user interface for determining commands by applying heuristics."

If some of its claims were ultimately found to be invalid, it could have drastic retroactive affects on the ruling in the big Apple vs Samsung case. On the other hand, if they are ultimately found to be valid, the patent will be stronger than ever for having survived an additional round of USPTO scrutiny.

This isn't the first Apple patent to be tentatively invalidated. The same thing happened to their bounce-scroll patent back in October. Of course Apple is going to muster its best legal minds to defend these key patents, and its legal teem has proven to be savvy in the past, so this is by no means the definitive end of this patent. But it could be the beginning of it. Maybe. [FOSS PATENTS via Slashgear]



    Lucky their legal teem is savvy I guess...

      Yes, I here there legal teem is one of the best.

      They're teeming with good ideas

      Their team is D'OH!

        ^ this one.. baa haa haa.

        The quickie mart is... D'Oh.

    Its a start. Now the USPTO needs to go on an invalidate "all" software design patents by anybody and everybody.

      Great idea. Then no one will bother investing real time and money in software R&D because as soon as they try to sell it some backyarder can just come and use it as their own and sell it for a fraction of the price of the original creater. I agree the patient system needs a do over but that comment is stupid!

        The patient system? Weird, I thought were were talking about Apple's legal teems, not patients...

        And yet people still innovate in industries without patent protection, weird...

        Open Source

    You all need to focus less on the few grammatical and spelling errors. It is actually more annoying having to read 20 idiots point out mistakes than it is to just move on with your lives.

    Normally I'd agree whole heartedly, but at least this time the errors were seen as humorous and not an excuse to Author-Bash.

    Perhaps we're reading that spelling error wrong - Perhaps Apples legal people are all between the ages of 13 and 19 inclusive!

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