U.S. Patent and Trademark Office rejects another one of Apple's patents

Alex Wagner
Editorial Director of News and Content from  Omaha, NE
| December 19, 2012

iPhone 5 black and slate off angle

Looks like the list of Apple patents that've been rejected by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office grew by one today. As noted by The Verge, the USPTO has rejected all 21 claims of U.S. Patent No. 7,844,915, which relates to an application programming interface that can figure out when a user applies one finger to a touchscreen to scroll or two or more fingers to perform some sort of gesture. As with the USPTO's rejection that we saw earlier this month, this decision doesn't mean that the patent is invalid quite yet, and Apple can work to try and keep it from being invalidated.

This particular patent played a role in the Apple-Samsung trial that took place earlier this year, with the jury ruling that several Samsung devices had infringed upon Claim 8 of the patent. That's why Samsung decided to make sure that Judge Lucy Koh, the judge that oversaw the trial and is currently involved in the related hearings with the two companies, was aware of the USPTO's rejection with a court filing today. While there's still a lot about today's decision that's up in the air, including whether or not the patent will ultimately be invalidated and how the USPTO's decision will affect the Apple-Samsung hearings, it seems fairly likely that Apple will do all it can to keep its patent valid while Samsung will be on rooting for invalidation. More on this whole mess as we get it.

Via The Verge, Statement of USPTO Decision (PDF), USPTO Rejection form (PDF)