Apple's patent to get contacts on the home screen is late to the game

Apple's patent to get contacts on the home screen is late to the game
You’d think that having an icon of a contact placed on the home screen of your phone wouldn’t seem like a process requiring a patent right? If you’re Apple though, it seems all too likely for the Cupertino based company to do just that – except that someone else somewhat already beat them to the punch. Apple filed a patent back in July 2008 that offers contact icons on the home screen – something that could make appearance in the next upcoming iPhone OS. Although this may seem like a new concept, the Android platform already has this feature implemented. There are some minor differences that Apple approaches with the patent – the icon can be modified to display other information that relates to the contact. Additionally icons can pop up in the home screen depending on the proximity of the handset to the entity – we’d gather it could closely follow something along the lines of Bluetooth discovery. Then again, it could be something totally different which is nothing out of the ordinary from Apple. Either way, it makes you wonder what they have in store for the next generation iPhone.

source: US Patent & Trademark Office via Engadgetmobile & Redmond Pie



1. ibap

Posts: 867; Member since: Sep 09, 2009

What hooey. SPB Mobile Shell offers this option in WinMo - it's there on mine. And there have been various ways to create links to do this for WinMo for a long time. I suppose scratching your behind with your left hand is different from scratching it with your right. But patentable? Proximity to the entity? What, you need to call someone more when you're near their house than when you're further away? Unless you're talking about other than your home city. What, so you don't call people not in the city you're in? Go ahead Apple, and make this so complicated that those who like your phone for it's simplicity will just give up.

2. jhoots

Posts: 74; Member since: Jan 13, 2010

my WM Treo 700WX did this like four years ago when i had it. nothing new, but before long we will here IFanboys claiming they came up with it and everyone else who has it needs to stop or Apple will sue the pants off them and destroy their company! haha.. remember this!! seriously fanboi central is going to attack all the pre existing phone that already have it as if Apple came up with it first!! losers!

3. josh10132

Posts: 30; Member since: Sep 29, 2009

Thats unfortunately very true, Apple fanboys like you said don't look at things already done unless they don't have it, and when it's there, they'll act like they did it first

4. E.N.

Posts: 2610; Member since: Jan 25, 2009

You guys are making a big deal out if this boring article. Who cares. It's just a contact icon. Seriously, put iPhone in any sentence and people will start complaining.

5. ohwhyfanboywhy

Posts: 37; Member since: Jan 10, 2010

Haha. That is very true. I'm surprised the Droid fanboys haven't attacked this article yet.

8. YouLostTheGame

Posts: 441; Member since: Dec 11, 2008

Well Apple may not be the first company to do it; BUT they probably ARE the first company to patent it. And in the biz world, that's what matters.

6. dandirk unregistered

Yup its amazing that you could patent a contact icon on home screen. I wish I would have known this a few years back I would have patented folder shortcuts on the desktop. The proximity thing sure that's an idea/tech that should be patented.


Posts: 18; Member since: Feb 12, 2009

I still don't get what this is supposed to do? I like my iPhone the way it is. I don't want them complicating shit.

9. YouLostTheGame

Posts: 441; Member since: Dec 11, 2008

If you think that by adding a contact icon on your phone's homescreen is "complicating" it, then that in and of itself, speaks volumes about your obvious lack of intuitiveness.

10. android#1

Posts: 74; Member since: Jan 12, 2010

HTC phones that run android as a result have Sense UI have something called WIDGETS and one of them relating to this article being the People Widget makes making calls to your favorites. So whatever apple comes out with in senario its already been done or its being done better. Objection? Give me examples and no bitching. And if there are any i wont be back on this forum to rebuttal. Educating Apple fanboys get tiring (however you spell it) =)

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