patents

Your next iPhone could employ tiny gas thrusters

Your next iPhone could employ tiny gas thrusters

Apple Patents aren't always a clear indication of where the company is going in the near future. Most patents listed in the public are done so well after the product has hit the market - not before. Keeping that in mind, Apple's latest listing has some very, very strange implications for the next iPhone - or an iPhone in the distant future, including tiny thrusters and gas canisters inside the smartphone's body that shoot out when the device is in danger of hitting the ground after a long drop.

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Google settles patent squabble with Rockstar Consoritum

Google settles patent squabble with Rockstar Consoritum

It seems that either Google or Rockstar (the industry consortium, not the game developers) has decided to throw in the towel. Details are still unclear on who called it quits first, but the fact of the matter is that, at least in the patent case filed in Texas, Google and Rockstar have reached an agreement to settle "all matters of controversy". It is highly likely that a large amount of money will also be involved. But what's even less clear is how it will affect Android, who is at the heart of the litigation.

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NVIDIA responds to Samsung’s “false advertising” claim

NVIDIA responds to Samsung’s “false advertising” claim

It is a well known legal tactic, especially between companies, for one to fight back a lawsuit with a countersuit. So when NVIDIA sued Samsung and Qualcomm last September, in what it claims to be the first patent suit it has ever filed, it fully expected Samsung to hit back with a suit of its own, which it did this week. But what it didn't expect was for Samsung, in the same lawsuit, to accuse NVIDIA of falsely advertising its Tekgra K1 as "the world's fastest mobile processor".

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Apple patent may crowdsource iPhone network data for carriers

Apple patent may crowdsource iPhone network data for carriers

When you’re shopping for a smartphone, you likely put little thought into the radios that receive your signal. The reason: they’re all about the same, and pretty good at their job. You do fret over carrier strength in your area, though. Is AT&T stronger than Verizon, or is T-Mobile the better choice? You can check Open Signal, which is helpful for you, but what about the carrier? A new Apple patent could give carriers real-time info on their towers, including dropped signals.

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LG, Google ink 10-year patent licensing agreement

LG, Google ink 10-year patent licensing agreement

If you're tired of hearing patent squabbles left and right (though we haven't actually heard from Apple and Samsung recently), then this might come as a refreshing change. LG and Google have announced that they have reached a long-term cross-licensing agreement that will let both companies take a peek and use the other's portfolio of patents. Conversely, it also protects both from lawsuits that involve each others patents, leaving them free to work on their products and technologies, most likely ones surrounding Android and smart devices, without fear of litigation.

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Samsung cites “collusion” as reason they didn’t pay Microsoft

Samsung cites “collusion” as reason they didn’t pay Microsoft

Earlier this month, news broke that Microsoft had sued Samsung for unpaid royalties. The South Korean electronics giant is being sued for $6.9 million in unpaid interest on a $1 billion patent royalty charge. Rather than pay the relatively small amount, Samsung is fighting this one in court. Samsung is now saying Microsoft’s acquisition of Nokia violated the terms of their deal with Microsoft, making them a direct hardware competitor. In the filing, Samsung said “The agreements, now between competitors, invite charges of collusion.”

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Apple Store no longer carries Bose products

Apple Store no longer carries Bose products

A lot has been speculated on regarding Apple’s relationship with third-party entities lately, as both Bose and Fitbit have reportedly come under fire as having offended Apple’s sensibilities. In Fitbit’s case, it seems to be their resistance to support HealthKit that allegedly has them on the edge of being removed from the Apple Store. Bose and the NFL have a partnership that saw athletes being fined for wearing Beats headphones. Suddenly, a search for Bose headphones in the Apple Store brings up no products.

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USPTO’s new chief may be former Google lawyer

USPTO’s new chief may be former Google lawyer

All the talk of patent reform is necessary, and often spot-on, but one thing goes unsaid: there’s no one leading the charge. The US Patent Office lacks leadership, and the Director chair has sat empty for over 18 months. The Obama administration is now trying to fill that seat, and have nominated Michelle Lee to helm the post. Lee is the current Deputy Director of the USPTO, but also has a lineage in tech as a former patent counsel at Google.

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Patent troll’s claim over screen rotation gets nullified

Patent troll’s claim over screen rotation gets nullified

Apparently somebody owns, or claims to own, that auto rotate feature you may have grown to love and hate on your smartphone. And surprisingly, it is neither Apple nor Samsung but a patent troll. Fortunately for the mobile world, the USPTO has just declared Patent No. 6,326,978 or "Display method for selectively rotating windows on a computer display" as invalid, in no small part thanks to the efforts of open cloud computing company Rackspace.

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