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Apple Wins Key Graphical User Interface Patent

After five years of waiting, Apple has finally won a key patent relating the iPhone’s graphical UI to the way documents and lists are displayed in a mobile OS. As you may remember, the iPhone reinvented the Smartphone: before the iPhone debuted, devices called Smart Phones weren’t so smart as they are today.

Apple Graphical UI patent
Pre-iPhone Smartphones depended on physical keys and buttons, and also required users to remember complex menu systems (just recall the time when you wanted to add a note) and featured tiny little displays, mainly because the physical keyboard was there.

When the iPhone launched, it was like a boom in the market: Apple brought a huge amount of graphical UI innovations into the market, and the recently granted patent reflects that. US patent No. 8,223,134 “For Portable electronic device, method and graphical user interface for displaying lists and documents,” covers user interface modules such as “email, telephone, video player, camera, widgets, search, browser, notes, maps and multi-touch interface.”

In a computer-implemented method, a portion of an electronic document is displayed on the touch screen display. The displayed portion of the electronic document has a vertical position in the electronic document. An object is detected on or near the displayed portion of the electronic document. In response to detecting the object on or near the displayed portion of the electronic document, a vertical bar is displayed on top of the displayed portion of the electronic document. The vertical bar has a vertical position on top of the displayed portion of the electronic document that corresponds to the vertical position in the electronic document of the displayed portion of the electronic document. After a predetermined condition is met, display of the vertical bar is ceased. The vertical bar is displayed for a predetermined time period when the portion of the electronic document is initially displayed, the abstract reads

The 30 items Apple lists in its patent cover the iPhone as a multi-touch and multifunctional device, including a virtual keyboard and multiple programs. In an era when Apple has opened fire on several battlefields against its rivals such as Samsung, Motorola, HTC–and the list can continue with thousands of patent trolls—this key patent the company just won secures its position as an innovator. [Via Patently Apple]

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