The red squiggly line. We hate it when we spell something wrong but we’re thankful when the electronic device we use indicates with a red squiggly line that something is spelled incorrectly. Various electronic devices incorporate the red squiggly line in spell check functions, such as the iPhone. But as of late, there seems to some issues over the red squiggly line. In particular, a company has accused Apple of patent infringement and has filed a lawsuit against Apple over issues related to the red squiggly lines.
The plaintiff alleging patent infringement is Sentinus International, LLC (Sentinus), a limited liability company organized under Virginia law. The patents at issue include patent no. RE43,633 (‘633 patent) and U.S. patent no. 7,672,985 (‘985 patent). Sentinus has accused Apple of incorporating patented aspects of both the ‘633 patent and the ‘985 patent into Apple products.
The Alleged Infringement
In the complaint, Sentinus specifically states that “Apple products accused of infringing the ‘633 patent… provide a specific accused functionality (a/k/a ‘red squiggly’ spell check feature) that identifies and marks misspelled words to at least one suggested correct spelling associated with the misspelled word from a spell check dictionary.” The complaint further states that “Apple products accused of infringing both the ‘633 patent and the ‘958 Patent… provide the accused functionality using a syndicated spell check dictionary that represents the latest information from a master spell check database.”
To read the entire complaint, click here.
Let’s Take a Look at the ‘633 Patent
The ‘633 patent is titled “[s]ystem and method for linking streams of multimedia data to reference material for display.” The abstract of the ‘633 patent states that the invention is for a “system for indexing displayed elements that is useful for accessing and understanding new or difficult materials, in which a user highlights unknown words or characters or other displayed elements encountered while viewing displayed materials.” The ‘633 patent was filed on July 8, 1996. But, there may be other applications that the ‘633 claims priority to.
To read the entire ‘633 patent, click here.
The ‘985 Patent
The other patent at issue is the ‘985 patent, which is titled “automated creation and delivery of database content.” The abstract of the ‘985 patent states that the invention is for a “method and apparatus are disclosed which automatically build a database by automatically identifying a term of interest and building a term database with supplemental content from an assigned source for that term.”
Click here to read the entire ‘985 patent.
So Many More Lawsuits.
The Sentinus lawsuit is only one of the many lawsuits filed against Apple. It seems like Apple is constantly bombarded with lawsuits left and right each week. One of the other suits against Apple concerns Siri.
The Lawsuit with Siri.
Parus Holding, Inc. (Parus), has filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Apple, along with various other companies. Some of the patents involved in this lawsuit include Patent no. 7,076,431 (‘431 patent, U.S. patent no. 9,451,084 (‘084 patent). Parus alleges that Apple infringed on the ‘431 patent by making, using, selling, or offering for sale Apple smartphones with Siri. Additionally, Parus further alleges that Apple infringed on the ‘084 patent by making, using, selling, or offering for sale Apple smartphones.
To read the entire complaint, click here.
The ‘431 Patent
The abstract of the ‘431 patent discloses an invention that relates to “a system for acquiring information from sources on a network, such as the Internet.” Moreover, the ‘431 patent states that it is “[a]n additional object of an embodiment of the present invention is to provide a system and method that allows the searching and retrieving of publicly available information by controlling a web browsing server using naturally spoken voice commands.”
Click here to read the entire ‘431 patent.
The ‘084 Patent
The invention disclosed in the ‘084 patent relates to “a system for acquiring information from sources on a network, such as the Internet.” This invention sounds quite familiar doesn’t it? Moreover, in the ‘084 patent’s summary of the invention, it is specifically stated that “[i]t is an object of an embodiment of the present invention to allow users to gather information from web sites by using voice enabled devices, such as wireline or wireless telephones.”
Click here to read the entire ‘084 patent.
What are your thoughts on the lawsuits against Apple? Leave a comment below to let us know what you think!
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Disclaimer: This article is not legal advice. It is only for educational or entertainment purposes only. Please do not use the article or contents of the article without permission. For legal advice and questions, please contact registered Patent Attorney Vincent LoTempio.