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And the Apple Patent Trolling Continues – Galaxy Nexus Lock Screen the New Target

In another non-surprising patent trolling move, Apple has made the Galaxy Nexus from Samsung their next target in German courts. In this latest trolling journey, the folks from Cupertino have decided that the unlock mechanism in the G-Nex infringes on their slide-to-unlock patent. [insert eye roll]

Without having any clue as to how a court would react to this, I’ll just offer my opinion on the differences between the two lock screens. First, Android’s is not a “slide-to-unlock” lock screen. I would argue that Google expected a move like this from Apple, which is why starting with Honeycomb, we saw the introduction of the globe that can be moved to unlock the device. It is no longer a slide.

Apple’s lock screen is true a “slide-to-unlock” gesture, as it is a bar that moves from left to right to unlock. Android’s – at least in 3.0+ – no longer acts this way. Upon touching the lock globe, you can move it in a complete 360 (up, down, left, right or at angles) before deciding whether or not you want to unlock or jump into the camera. While some may gawk at that as being a difference maker, just remember that these are patents and the broken system they make up we are talking about. The tiny details like this are what can make the difference in winning or losing one of these cases.

Just some thoughts.

Via:  AllThingsD, Foss Patents

  • Anonymous

    Technically, you don’t even have to slide to unlock the ring on Honeycomb (and I assume Ice Cream Sandwich).  I saw an older woman unlock her Galaxy Tab 10.1 by tapping the center lock, then tapping the unlock icon when it appeared on the ring.  I tried it later on an IdeaPad K1, and sure enough, it unlocks without sliding.

  • Srini

    stop rolling eyes kellex.
    please do some research before posting an article.

    a simple google search gives you this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tj-KS2kfIr0&feature=player_embedded

    I mean this is bigger that your globe and circle explanation.

  • Pirroav

    Apple is a little upset that the dozens of Android manufacturers have sliced into their market share, and so is going to resort to anything they can do outside of direct competition to slow the android juggernaut. Which is so ironic, because more people are switching to Apple, now that they have begun to steal UI features from Android… and are suing them for stealing their features…. 

    • Stating El Obvious

      Strangely, Android stealing UI features from Apple (creating folders) and Windows (People App) doesn’t seem to have made people stay with Android.  But I’m sure the fandroids have a logical explanation for all this…

  • Plechaty

    I think that Google maps won’t be on the iPhone anymore


     joke with another .. my co-worker’s step-sister makes $86/hour on the laptop. She has been out of work for 6 months but last month her pay was $7589 just working on the laptop for a few hours. Read more here… MakeCash2.com

  • Mr. Yous

    Soon Apple will sue people using trousers with zipper, zip to unlock. lol


    Well done Jax.. 

  • It doeasn’t make sence… I always was a fan of Apple products, but now everything change, Adroid are going forward!

  • Master O’Disaster

    And, by the way, depending on how the courts interpret this patent, even the pattern unlock could be interpreted as a “predefined gesture for unlocking the device.”


  • Master O’Disaster

    For anyone who hasn’t done the research, here is the abstract for Apple patent #1964022:

    “A device with a touch-sensitive display may be unlocked via gestures
    performed on the touch-sensitive display. The device is unlocked if
    contact with the display-corresponds to a prededfined gesture for
    unlocking the device. The device displays one or more unlock images with
    respect to which the predefined gesture is to be performed in order to
    unlock the device. The performance of the predefined gesture with
    respect to the unlock image may include moving the unlock image to a
    predefined location and/or moving the unlock image along a predefined
    path. The device may also display visual cues of the predefined gesture
    on the touch screen to remind a user of the gestures.”

    I don’t think this will fare well for Google/Android. I guess we’ll have to wait and see what the courts decide.

    • Count how many times ‘predefined gesture’ comes up in that abstract. Now go use the AOSP lockscreen like on the GNex and you’ll quickly discover the gesture is NOT predefined, only that its determined exactly by which direction you CHOOSE to go. You can do a complete 360 with a finger if you so decide before arriving at the lock icon. And the fact that the path is not predefined makes the use of unlock/lock images moot, because no predetermined path exists with which they can be related. The destination is predefined but the patent doesn’t cover that. It only covers a predefined gesture and path to an unlock image. Its quiet specific actually. Google should have no problem getting this thrown out.

  • magy

    another unoriginal joke.. my best friend’s ex-wife makes $73 hourly on the laptop. She has been out of a job for 5 months her paycheck was $9022 just working on the laptop for a few hours. Here’s the site to read more… MakeCash2.com

  • Johnnycsx

    I don’t think people realize just how much this does effect us. Think of Germany and the galaxy tab 10.1 suit, the product was banned for apple’s suit. Yes, this patent crap will hurt you personally as well. Microsoft, who licenses is different, apple is trying to kill off competition and YOUR choices!

  • Anonymous

    Well my fanfroid friends, I present to you the words of the late great Steven P. Jobs when he introduced the iPhone at MacWorld Jan 9, 2007:
    “We’ve filed for over 200 patents for all of the inventions in the iPhone; AND WE INTEND TO PROTECT THEM…..” Maybe they didn’t believe him…. I bet they do now.

    Say what you want about the system, but it’s not like they weren’t warned. For whatever reason they chose to ignore the warning, and now the chickens have come home to roost. Not trolling here, but it’s that simple. It’s just like Andy Rubins email when he decided to “do Java” and deal with the consequences later. When you have no respect for others patented IP, it’s eventually gonna come back and bite you. Point blank period

    • Srini

      oh yeah? google neonode N1m.
      touch to unlock has been there since several years . prior art.
      point blank yeah right.