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Apple faces lawsuits over iPhone haptic feedback

Apple faces lawsuits over iPhone haptic feedback

Apple has been hit by yet another lawsuit, this time focusing on the haptic feedback display technology found in its iPhones and Apple Watch.

Immersion, a key developer in the 'haptics' field, says that Apple’s iPhone 6, iPhone 6s and Apple Watch all breach a variety of patents which it owns.

Haptic technology is what enables gadgets to detect the strength of users' finger presses on a screen and serve up different options and features according to how hard and long they kept their finger depressed.

It's also what allows phones to 'feed back' with a small vibration to let users know their press has been registered.

The patents allegedly breached by Apple include "Haptic Feedback System with Stored Effects", "Method and Apparatus for Providing Tactile Sensations”, and "Interactivity Model for Shared Feedback on Mobile Devices."

The latter is believed to relate solely to the iPhone 6s, released last year. The infringements focus on a series of Apple technologies, such as its Taptic Engine, found in the Apple Watch, and 3D Touch, the key feature in the iPhone 6s.

The current-gen iPhone offers users the chance to register pressure as well as swipes on a touchscreen and has become the main selling point of the device.

Immersion’s CEO Victor Vegas said: “While we are pleased to see others in the industry recognise the value of haptics and adopt it in their products, it is important for us to protect our business against infringement of our intellectual property in order to preserve the ecosystem we have built and the investments that we have made in continuing to advance haptic experiences.”

Apple has yet to comment.


Apple Insider

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