This Video of Steve Jobs Led to Invalidation of Apple’s Patent
A German court recently sided with Samsung (SSNLF.PK) and Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) Motorola Mobility and declared one of Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) so-called “rubber-banding” patents to be invalid based on the content of a six-year old video presentation by Steve Jobs, reports Foss Patents. Under German law, public demonstrations of an invention before the patent is filed can be used as examples of prior art when deciding whether or not to grant a patent.
The video, which was shown in open court, can be seen below. As noted by Foss Patents, the portion relevant to this case begins around the 33:00 minute mark.
Since Jobs publicly unveiled the rubber-banding feature during the original iPhone presentation five months before priority date for the German patent, his demonstration of this feature was an eligible example of prior art. It should be noted that, at the time of Jobs’s presentation, European patent laws did not allow inventors any grace period before filing their patent applications.
This significant difference between European and American patent law allowed Samsung and Google’s Motorola Mobility to use Jobs’s own words and actions against Apple in this patent infringement hearing. However, the Federal Patent Court of Germany’s ruling only applies to the validity of Apple’s patent within the borders of Germany and has no bearing on the state of the patent in the U.S.