"Apple has been awarded its long sought-after patent on the iPhone. Intellectual property experts say it's so broad and far-reaching that the iPhone maker may be able to bully other smart phone manufacturers out of the U.S. market entirely.
Some three-and-a-half years after filing for a patent on the iPhone, Apple on Tuesday was awarded U.S. patent number 7,966,578 for "[a] computer-implemented method, for use in conjunction with a portable multifunction device with a touch screen display, [that] comprises displaying a portion of page content, including a frame displaying a portion of frame content and also including other content of the page, on the touch screen display."
My view of the impact is different than what the article says (try to stop other companies or earn royalties). Apple needed this patent to defend itself against a mountain of mobile phone patents the current companies own. Without this, its prospects were poor in my opinion being a newcomer with very little granted patents of its own. Suspect we will be reading about a number of PCLs (patent cross-licensing deals) with major companies in the coming few months with suits being settled at the same time.