Apple Pinch-To-Zoom Patent Invalidated by USPTO

December 20, 2012, By Sanjeev Ramachandran

Apple may have scored over their battle with Samsung, but their win over the war has been delayed in a move by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. The USPTO, after re-examining one of the patents, has rejected all claims regarding the patent.

A few months back, in August, Apple had won a major victory over the Korean electronics giant, who was accused of violating multiple Apple patents. The Cupertino-based company had won over $1 billion in damages then.

The present issue is concerning the US Patent No. 7,844,915, which is commonly referred to as ’915 or as the pinch-to-zoom patent. This patent has been a major factor in getting Apple the victory in August.

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21 claims of the patent has been considered invalid by the USPTO, but Apple can counter the decision during legal proceedings. The re-examination results were disclosed after Samsung had handed over the paperwork with the court.

Samsung, has also reportedly stopped trying to get sales ban against Apple’s products in countries like Italy, France, Germany, the UK, and the Netherlands. But the company is still running after lawsuits for standard-essential patents.

They haven’t given out any specific reasons as to why they are amending the lawsuits. Anyway, Apple isn’t happy regarding the USPTO’s ruling and although there are many more procedures to go before a patent has been totally invalidated, the start isn’t looking too good for the company.

Moreover, this isn’t the first time that Apple’s patents are getting the invalidated notion. In October, the Patent Office had invalidated the rubber banding ‘381 patent, which Samsung was accused of violating with 18 devices.

And last month, the ’163 tap-to-zoom patent was under the scanner by Judge Lucy Koh on doubts of validity. Looks like Apple is not having a smooth sail with patents this year.

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