Back in October, Apple was granted the patent on the “slide to unlock” method that is currently available in many phones running Google’s Android OS. It was only a matter of time before Apple used its new found power to file a suit against one of the many OEMs who currently use Google’s Android OS. Who do you think they went after and for which phone?
Samsung and the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, of course.
In a suit filed in the Mannheim Regional Court in Germany, Apple claims that the Korean electronics manufacturer’s flagship phone, the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, infringes Apple’s “slide-to-unlock” utility model. This is the first suit filed by Apple that includes the Galaxy Nexus, the first phone running Google’s Android 4.0 operating system.
According to FOSS Patents, a “utility model” is a limited fast-track patent that companies are allowed to file for alongside traditional patents, something that Apple did in Germany for their “slide-to-unlock” feature.
As part of its defense, Samsung will definitely be bringing up the Neonode N1m, a smartphone that featured the slide-to-unlock feature way before Apple decided to call it their invention. We will find out more on the court’s decision on March 16 when it decides to announce a ruling, a stay, or a decision to appoint an independent expert to further look into things.