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Apple's QR patent win

Illustration of a wallet with a padlock on it.

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Through a petition with The U.S. Patent Trial and Appeal Board, Apple was able to get much of a Fintiv patent around debit payments via QR codes invalidated.

Why it matters: The win this week comes after another patent kerfuffle briefly barred the company from selling its Apple Watch Series 9 and Watch Ultra 2 in the U.S.

Context: Apple has notched a number of gains in this battle since Fintiv first filed a lawsuit against Apple in a federal court in December 2018. It it, Fintiv alleged that features of the Apple Wallet infringed on its mobile wallet patents.

Details: Apple, an experienced player in the realm of patent law, convinced PTAB that 18 of the patent's 21 claims are "unpatentable."

  • The three claims still under patent deal with the time of day when a payment was initiated, and which debit network would be selected as a result.

Of note: Apple's battle for the Apple Watch still is not over, though the company won a pause roughly a week after the ban, allowing it to resume sales of the wearables.

  • "The company expects the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit to hear its motion as soon as Jan. 15 for a stay for the entire period during which it is appealing the case," per Axios' Rebecca Falconer.
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