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Apple files iPhone movable-interface patent

updated 02:55 pm EDT, Tue August 28, 2007

Apple iPhone patent

Apple has filed a patent covering user interfaces on portable devices with touchscreen interfaces (presumably the iPhone and or iPod) that would allow for quick reconfiguration of on-screen elements, including icons. For instance" the user makes contact with one of the icons and moves the point of contact across the display surface; the motion and contact are detected by the portable "electronic device" and the displayed icon is moved accordingly. This would appear to represent an easy method for re-arranging the applications that appear on the iPhone's home screen, or SpringBoard. The patent also allows for icons to be automatically displaced by other icons, and the movement of icons to static-placed holders akin to the Dock in Mac OS X.




by MacNN Staff

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  1. njfuzzy

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    This is already present

    This is already part of the iPhone interface. In the iPod section, the icons for things like playlists/albums/podcasts can be rearranged.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Wow!

    Its like rearranging icons on your desktop Mac, but using your finger and performing it on a mobile telecommunications device!

    Thank god Apple's patenting this!

  1. cgmpowers

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    one word....

    lcars...

    a nickle for anyone who knows what lcars are...

    Chris

  1. nhmlco

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Sad

    That someone can patent dragging and dropping icons. Is there no applicable prior art or obviousness test at all?

    Hey, I just used my finger on the trackpad to move an application icon onto the dock on my MBP, and the other icons rearranged themselves accordingly. Isn't my WiFi-enabled notebook a "portable communications device"?

  1. slider

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Well Yes, but....

    The thing is, lets say Apple doesn't patent it. I mean I know Apple has never been sued or anything by someone trying to cash in on it's success, but someone comes out of the woodwork and say hey, I patented this in 1984 as you can see from this extremely vague description, which I meant to mean this very thing Apple is now using. On second thought, that's just fantasy. I suppose the difference is Apple is using these patents in it's products.

  1. EnviroG

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    to cgmpowers

    Try this link for a possible explanation of "LCARS". http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LCARS

    Nice patent for Apple to apply for!

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Re: well yes, but

    The thing is, lets say Apple doesn't patent it. I mean I know Apple has never been sued or anything by someone trying to cash in on it's success, but someone comes out of the woodwork and say hey, I patented this in 1984 as you can see from this extremely vague description, which I meant to mean this very thing Apple is now using. On second thought, that's just fantasy. I suppose the difference is Apple is using these patents in it's products.

    Apple patenting it does NOT prevent someone from claiming they patented it in 1984. (Of course, the patent from 1984 has expired, so that won't help anyway). If someone has a patent prior to Apple's application (and other paperwork/proof of development), they still can be sued.

  1. ccrider

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    one thing interesting...

    Sounds to me like a future update to the phone will allow us to change the 4 main apps at the bottom as well as rearranging the "subapps" at the top.

    Also a chance there will finally be games?

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