But the two patents that raised my non-lawyer eyebrows are the following:
Ellipse Fitting for Multi-Touch Surfaces: “Apparatus and methods are disclosed for simultaneously tracking multiple finger and palm contacts as hands approach, touch, and slide across a proximity-sensing, multi-touch surface. Identification and classification of intuitive hand configurations and motions enables unprecedented integration of typing, resting, pointing, scrolling, 3D manipulation, and handwriting into a versatile, ergonomic computer input device.”
Multipoint Touchscreen: “A touch panel having a transparent capacitive sensing medium configured to detect multiple touches or near touches that occur at the same time and at distinct locations in the plane of the touch panel and to produce distinct signals representative of the location of the touches on the plane of the touch panel for each of the multiple touches is disclosed.”
You don’t have to be a master of legal jargon to see that both patents involve touching a screen with multiple fingers at the same time. Apple has never used these patents for lawsuits before, and from what I can tell, Apple’s lawsuits against other smartphone manufacturers, such as HTC and Nokia, don’t specifically target multi-touch.
Apple won’t attack Google directly in court, so for now Motorola’s taking the blame for allegedly using one of the iPhone’s most important features. The implications would appear to be huge, but as with all the other patent lawsuits in play, this one’s not going to be resolved anytime soon.
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