updated 10:35 pm EST, Wed February 15, 2012
New Apple lawsuit targets 17 devices
Apple's latest lawsuit versus Samsung is considerably wider than outlined in its bid for a preliminary ban. Although it's focusing immediate attention on the Galaxy Nexus, a total of 17 devices are alleged to be infringing a twice-as-large set of eight patents. The batch includes the Galaxy Player 4.0 and 5.0 as well as two tablets previously left alone, the Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus and the Galaxy Tab 8.9.
The 13 phones targeted by the complaint are now much more up to date and include all the late 2011 Galaxy S II variants in the US as well as the Captivate Glide, Exhibit II 4G, Stratosphere, and others. Its list isn't necessarily the end point but sets a wide minimum.
The four patents touch on an earlier variant on the Siri-style search patent, an interface with historical lists and field classes, asynchronous data transfer, and an interface for handling missed phone calls. Only this last patent comes from late 2011.
Combined with the other four patents in the lawsuit, the claims are closer in ambition to Apple's original lawsuits and would have Apple hoping to keep pressure on Samsung with both long- and near-term legal threats to its product line. Most lawsuits can take years to completely wrap up if the two sides don't reach a settlement, by which point some of the products would be out of the market.
Apple's legal campaign is meant partly to slow down Android but, unlike Microsoft, is also motivated by a sincere belief at Apple that Android was directly copied rather than simply sharing a few elements. [via Florian Mueller]