The United States Patent and Trademark Office has, in a non-final Office action, declared all 20 claims of Apple’s rubber-banding patent invalid, including claim 19, which Apple successfully asserted against Samsung in the summer trial in California, reports “FOSS Patents” (http://macte.ch/KOeKj).
“While this non-final decision is not binding, there is a possibility that Judge Koh will be persuaded by this to grant Samsung’s Rule 50 (‘overrule-the-jury’) motion to the extent it relates to the ‘381 patent,” Florian Mueller writes for “FOSS Patents.” “Even if Judge Koh is hesitant to overrule the jury on this and skeptical of a non-final action, the reexamination process will continue during the Federal Circuit appellate proceedings, so if the non-final findings concerning claim 19 are affirmed in subsequent Office actions, they will have more weight. And even after the appeals process, a subsequent final rejection of the relevant patent claim would make the patent unenforceable going forward.”
This is all part of the ongoing, global legal battle. Apple and Samsung have filed more than 30 lawsuits against each other across four continents. For example, Apple alleges that Samsung copied the slide-to-unlock technology of its iPhone and iPad devices.