Apple is once again accused of patent infringement, and this time the culprit is said to be none other than the iOS software keyboard used on iPhone and iPad.
A company called Princeps Interface Technologies, which has reportedly acquired a patent for “Universal Keyboard” from Timothy Higginson, claims all Apple devices coming with a virtual keyboard, including here iPhone, iPad, and iPod powered by any version of iOS, violate the patent.
More or less awkward, however, is that the patent appears to be mostly aimed at physical keyboards rather than software keyboards like the ones used on iOS devices.
Apple tight-lipped on the lawsuit
The patent was filed in 2002 and granted in 2004, whereas Apple launched the first iPhone in 2007.
“The present invention provides a multifunctional input device. The input device includes a functional mode which defines the mode of operation of the input device. Each functional mode includes one or more domain levels with each domain level containing one or more domain-level values,” the patent reads.
“Each domain level-value within each functional mode is assigned to one of a plurality of programmable input keys. The…