Print 7 comment(s) - last by EasyC.. on May 30 at 4:27 PM

Company says it is now in complete compliance with court ruling

HTC Corp. (TPE:2498) became the first major U.S. victim of the patent war between Android and Apple, Inc. (AAPL) after the U.S. International Trade Commission ordered a preliminary injunction banning shipments of HTC devices with unmodified firmware.

HTC went ahead and modified the firmware, removing the infringing feature -- "data tapping", the process of converting text line phone numbers to actionable links which open menus, a UI development guarded by Apple's U.S. Patent No. 5,946,647.  Apple filed the patent in 1996, long before it devoted significant resources to phone development; in fact the feature appears to have been originally intended for PC software.

Inexplicably U.S. Customs and Border Patrol seized its device shipments anyways, taking an excrutiang month to "verify compliance".  An ITC spokersperson wrote DailyTech, insisting that the delay was not the ITC's responsibility, but rather was the fault of Customs.

The good news is that after lots of media scrutiny HTC indicated last Monday that phones had began to trickle through.  Today it announced that the release was complete, commenting, "HTC devices have been released, as they are in compliance with the ITC's ruling."

That frees devices like the Android Ice Cream Sandwich One X, the One S, and the Evo 4G LTE to reach the hands of customers.

In a statement to The Verge, HTC says it does not anticipate any further delays.  That's good news for the company, considering its financially precarious state.  Reviews of the One X have generally been quite good, so HTC now hopes to make up for lost time and capitalize on that positive buzz.

Source: The Verge

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By lost953 on 5/30/2012 1:13:34 AM , Rating: 2
Isn't the ability to change phone numbers into actionable links pretty key functionality it would be really annoying to not have.

RE: Problems
By Aloonatic on 5/30/2012 2:08:50 AM , Rating: 2
It's not so much what you do that gets patented, but how you do it. I think there was an article on here about how HTC have come up with a work-around that lets you do things with numbers in text, just not in the same way as you can on an iPhone.

RE: Problems
By theapparition on 5/30/2012 9:36:33 AM , Rating: 5

The Apple patent in question pops up a menu that lets you select your action. The HTC workaround automatically associates certain strings with actions.

Apple: Click actionable text, pop up window allows you to make phone call.

HTC: Click actionable text (phone number) and it dials the number.

Bypassing the pop-up was enough to get around Apple's ridiculous patent.

RE: Problems
By nolisi on 5/30/2012 11:52:35 AM , Rating: 3
Because before this patent menu windows have never ever come up when you click/tap.

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