Apple Wins Patent for Slide to Unlock and Rounded-Edge Design

February 6, 2013, By Sanjeev Ramachandran

Apple has been granted 2 patents by the US Patent and Trademark Office. The patent numbers D675,639 and D675, 612 correspond to slide-to-unlock user interface and design for the original iPhone respectively.

Apple’s patent for a “Display screen or portion thereof with a graphical user interface” corresponds to the rounded rectangular bar that iPhone users have grown accustomed to seeing at the bottom of their lock screens.

Slide-to-unlock has been a much disputed over patent, with Apple claiming in a German court that Samsung’s Galaxy Nexus allegedly encroached on the property. Motorola had to face a filing from Apple and indeed Apple won the case last year. But Motorola insisted in a statement that the decision would not affect “current supply or future sales”.

slidepatent

The ‘Slide-to-Unlock’ patent from Apple was filed in August of 2011, while Google’s was first filed for in August of 2010. So there is some ambiguity left in that issue.

The second design patent awarded on Tuesday covers the rounded-edge design of the original iPhone. The contours of the early versions of Apple’s best-selling phone have also been the source of considerable legal struggle, making up for a significant portion of Apple’s landmark patent case against Samsung last year.

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