Apple Granted Patent of Digital Page Flipping

This is one piece of news that could leave many tech companies flip over.

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has granted Apple a design patent for the digital version of the page turn, whether it is flipping pages on an e-book or a virtual newspaper. Apple filed for the patent on December 9, 2011, more than a year after Apple released its iBooks software, which employs a similar page-turning mechanism on screen.

Note that it is a design patent that was patented, protecting the look and feel of page flipping on a mobile device, not a utility patent that covers computational underpinnings of turning pages virtually.

Apple is not the first company to try applying for such a patent. In early 2009, Microsoft applied for a utility patent for the feature, though it has not yet been granted. Samsung also applied for its own page turning patent in Europe last month, while Google was granted a design patent in late 2010 for turning a page on a “communications terminal.”

Source: USPTO, via CNET

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