Today the Munich I Regional Court
handed down a decision awarding Apple an injunction against all Motorola products that violate a patent
on "portable electronic device[s] for photo management." That overly broad-sounding claim appears to apply specifically to the bouncing over scroll animation found in the company's photo gallery application, so a small tweak to the existing software could quickly and quietly put this issue to rest. Still, according to FOSS Patents'
Florian Mueller, there is a small (and we do mean small
) chance that Apple could choose to enforce the ban, which could require Motorola to destroy all existing products that violate the claim. This includes items already on shelves, which would have to be recalled. More likely though, despite Apple's victory regarding the zoomed-
in view in the Android gallery app, Motorola will continue to be able to sell the Xoom and two infringing phones. On a somewhat related note, is it safe yet to officially dub Germany the successor to Texas' Eastern District
-- patent trolling capital of the world?Update:
We erroneously stated that it was the zoomed-out view that was found to be in violation of the patent, when in fact it was the zoomed-in one. Motorola successfully defended itself against claims the zoomed-out interface also infringed on Apple's patents. Motorola reached out to us with the following statement:
"Today's ruling in Munich, Germany on the patent litigation brought by Apple concerns a software feature associated with performing certain functions when viewing photos in a 'zoomed in' mode on mobile devices. We note that the Court ruled that performing the functions in a 'zoomed out' mode does not infringe on this patent. We expect no impact to supply or future sales as we have already implemented a new way to view photos on our products that does not interfere with the user experience."