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Despite Apple's patents on cell phone touch gestures, HTC was the first to bring a touch-gesture driven phone to the market, with its HTC Touch, released in June 2007.  (Source: Overseas Electronics)
Company is standing up to Apple's patent claims

HTC says in a press release that it is prepared to fight back against Apple's patent litigation in court.  It has not yet filed an official response or countersued, but that should follow within a few weeks.

Apple is currently suing HTC to block the import of Android handsets into the U.S.  Apple claims that it invented a host of technologies including a touch-screen finger-swipe unlock gestures, mobile object oriented graphics, and undervolting a mobile CPU via an interrupt.  These somewhat vague and far-reaching patents form the basis of Apple's claims.  Apple CEO Jobs released a statement casting his company as the tireless innovator and his rivals as thieves.

Peter Chou, chief executive officer, HTC Corporation, says that HTC won't tolerate Apple's bullying.  He states, "HTC disagrees with Apple's actions and will fully defend itself. HTC strongly advocates intellectual property protection and will continue to respect other innovators and their technologies as we have always done, but we will continue to embrace competition through our own innovation as a healthy way for consumers to get the best mobile experience possible."

The press release points out that HTC achieved many industry firsts -- the first Windows PDA (1998), the first Windows Phone (2002), the first gesture-based smart phone (June 2007), and the first Google Android smart phone (October 2008).  Along the way it piled up a fair amount of intellectual property, which could give it ammo against Apple in court.

Some are speculating that Google, makers of the Android operating system, may intervene and aid its handset developers legally to prevent Apple trying to stomp out the growing Android movement at the hardware level.

The stakes are high.  If Apple wins, it could effectively take many of the top Android handsets off the U.S. market, including the HTC Hero, MyTouch, Nexus One, and the soon-to-be-released Incredible.  If HTC wins, on the other hand, it will likely damage Apple's image and give the Android movement more momentum.



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RE: Apple Defense
By Jaybus on 3/19/2010 5:23:52 PM , Rating: 3
Long, long ago in a data center far, far away, I used to write Rexx scripts for running multiple TSO sessions (with an S/370 MVS mainframe) on a single 3270 terminal. IBM's SPF (later renamed ISPF) allowed what they called "panels", but which we would now consider "text-only console windows". So this concept of running multiple programs in different "windows" long pre-dates Mac or Windows, and also the Xerox proto-GUI. To me, it seemed a logical evolutionary step to put graphics in these "windows", instead of just text.

We did, by the way, have graphics terminals back then too, like the Tektronix 4010. In fact, I worked on a auto-routing application for placing ICs on a printed circuit board and calculating the traces needed between pins. There was no mouse, but there was a cursor controlled by the keyboard that you would maneuver to a palette of pre-defined IC package types and drag-n-drop them into place. Yes, people knew about drag-n-drop before there was a Mac or a Windows, or even an Amiga.

The concept of "windows", from my experience, came from IBM. The graphical (as opposed to text) user interface was much more evolutionary than revolutionary, in spite of Apple's (or anyone else's) boasts of ingenuity.


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