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U.S. invalidates Apple display patent

Dec. 19, 2012 at 7:39 PM

WASHINGTON, Dec. 19 (UPI) -- The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has invalidated a patent successfully used by Apple in a court fight against Samsung this year.

A California jury found in August devices sold by Samsung Electronics Co. infringed on the main claim of Apple's so-called pinch-to-zoom patent.

However, following a re-examination, the USPTO invalidated all 20 claims of U.S. patent number 7,844,915, CNET reported Wednesday.

The patent concerns technology that can discern whether a user is scrolling content on a display with one finger or is using several points of contact to create a "pinch-to-zoom" action.

Claims from other patents, including one from the United States and one from Japan, preceded Apple's, thus making Apple's invalid, the USPTO said.

In a filing with U.S. District Court Judge Lucy Koh, who presided over the California trial, Samsung said the patent office's decision is "relevant" to its effort to win a retrial in the matter.

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