In yet another win for Apple this week, the International Trade Commission ruled in their favor over a patent dispute with HTC. The patent in question covers the ability (and methods) to multitask while on a phone call, and without a workaround HTC would have had to stop importing devices to the United States.
The million dollar question is: Can manufacturers of Android devices possibly get around the broad reaching Apple patent in a way that remains elegant for the user? Apple’s patents manage to be so broad that they really sound like they can put device makers in a bit of a bind.
The answer: Perhaps not, HTC’s workaround involves removing this functionality. That’s right. You can forget about checking your calendar while on a call, looking up another number, or looking up information on the web. Nope, you can do phone calls and only phone calls.
It also begs the question of how this wasn’t possibly patented before? Windows Mobile did this for years.
Needless to say, the LA Times blog article on this is worth the read: