Apple is expected to unveil iOS 7 at WWDC 2013 and the new update is expected to feature a simplistic black and white design, replacing the current shaded skeumorphic design with a flatter and less glossy user interface.
The Cupertino-based company is likely banking on iOS 7 to help drive refreshed excitement around the next generation of the iPad and iPhone. However, Apple is also ready to go to war if necessary to protect its new mobile operating system from patent infringement.
“iOS 7 is [a completely] new UI, which is far superior to anything that is available out there,” according to Global Equities Research analyst Trip Chowdhry, who noted that Apple will take any route it needs to defend it if competitors try to copy features. Chowdhry told Barron’s that iOS 7 will implement a number of new features and touch gestures including “bend” and “squeeze,” though that appears to be pure speculation right now.
It’s no surprise that Apple is ready to defend iOS 7 in court, but it is a little ironic. It’s true that the earliest Android versions might have taken some “inspiration” from iOS, but Apple’s move away from a glossy UI towards flat, digital surfaces seems to draw heavily from the mobile UIs introduced by Google and more notably Microsoft with Windows Phone 8.
So will iOS 7 open Apple up to claims of patent infringement from its competition? Microsoft and Google may jump at the opportunity to turn the tables on a common enemy, but just because Apple was the last to adopt a flat UI doesn’t mean we should rule out the possibility that it has the patents to back it up.