Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Apple identifies certain patents allegedly infringed by Samsung Galaxy S4 and Google Now app

Last week Apple informed the court that it intended to amend its infringement contentions in the second California patent litigation with Samsung to target the Galaxy S4 (instead of some other product to be dropped from the list of accused devices). Apple has now filed the motion it announced, and it specifies five patents allegedly infringed by the S4 as well as two patents allegedly infringed by the Google Now search app. Here's the filing (this post continues below the document):

13-05-21 Apple Motion to Amend Infringement Contentions

The key passage concerning the S4 is this sentence and the related footnote:

"[...] Apple determined that the Galaxy S4 product practices many of the same claims already asserted by Apple, and that the Galaxy S4 practices those claims in the same way as the already-accused Samsung devices."

The related footnote alleges infringement by the S4 of the following five patents-in-suit:

  • Two "Siri" patents on unified search:

    U.S. Patent No. 8,086,604 and U.S. Patent No. 6,847,959 on a "universal interface for retrieval of information in a computer system"

    Apple asserted the '604 patent in a preliminary injunction motion. The Federal Circuit reversed a preliminary injunction against the Galaxy Nexus and, in addition to equitable reasons, overturned Judge Koh's claim construction in a way that affects both "Siri" patents alike (for an excellent explanation of this claim construction issue, see Patently-O's post). Apple claims that the '604 and '959 patents are infringed even under the appeals court's construction.

  • U.S. Patent No. 5,666,502 on a "graphical user interface using historical lists with field classes"

  • U.S. Patent No. 5,946,647 on a "system and method for performing an action on a structure in computer-generated data" (which I dubbed the "data tapping" patent, a term many reporters have since adopted)

    Apple prevailed over HTC on this patent at the ITC. Apple claims that Android infringes this patent at the operating system level (the "linkify" library), as you can see in this infringement claim chart from the HTC case. Apple was enforcing an ITC import ban against HTC but ceased enforcement after a settlement (the parties stipulated to rescision of the exclusion order).

  • U.S. Patent No. 7,761,414 on "asynchronous data synchronization amongst devices"

A recent claim construction decision by Judge Koh went very well for Apple. Three of the patents listed above -- the '502, '647 and '414 patents -- were addressed in that order and interpreted according to Apple's proposals.

In its original infringement contentions Apple asserted the '604 and '509 unified search patents against the Android Quick Search Box. Meanwhile Google has launched Google Now, and Apple wishes to update its infringement contentions accordingly.

Apple's motion does not mention the Galaxy S4 Google Edition, which Google announced at last week's Google I/O developer conference. Apple based its motion on units of the S4 that it purchased in local stores immediately after the product became available. It will presumably also purchase the Google Edition and analyze it at the earliest opportunity.

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