The US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has rejected multiple claims of an Apple patent in its legal dispute with rival manufacturer Samsung.
The USPTO said in a preliminary ruling that certain aspects of the patent were not valid. Patent No. 8,074,172 relates to autocomplete features in generating word suggestions based on what a person types. The '172 patent is called the 'method, device, and graphical user interface providing word recommendations'.
In a recent trial in California, the jury ruled that Samsung should pay Apple around US$119m in damages for infringing three patents. The ‘172 patent's claim 18 was asserted against the South Korean phone manufacturer. District Court Judge Lucy Koh found Samsung had infringed on the predictive text patent in a judgment handed down.
Samsung informed Judge Koh of USPTO's decision to reject Apples claims, in a court filing this week.
Following on from this latest decision by USPTO, Apple will have the opportunity to offer more information in defence of its patents. It is expected the matter will drag on for months.
We contacted both Apple and Samung for an update on the matter. A spokesperson for Samsung said they would get back to us. We received no response from Apple at the time of publication.