Speak for Yourself app might make iPad comeback, report says

According to a new report, the Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) language app could be reinstated by Apple, depending on how a patent-infringement case goes.

Don Reisinger
Don Reisinger
Former CNET contributor Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.
2 min read
The SFY app in action.
The SFY app in action. Speak for Yourself, LLC

After taking down a speech therapy application designed for children, Apple might eventually reinstate it, according to a new report.

The Register is reporting today, citing sources, that Apple plans to bring the Speak for Yourself iPad application back to its App Store if the company behind the program -- Speak For Yourself LLC -- wins a patent case brought against it recently.

Apple earlier this month removed the Speak for Yourself augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) language app from its store after Prentke Romich Company (PRC) and Semantic Compaction, companies operating in the AAC field, sued Speak for Yourself for patent violation. The companies said that that the application, which is designed to help children with developmental disabilities communicate through the iPad, was found to have "numerous instances of infringement."

PRC has a technology it calls Unity, which it claims Speak for Yourself infringed upon, to power language devices.

For its part, Speak for Yourself, which was started by two certified speech therapists, has fought hard against the infringement claim, and has even launched a petition to get Apple to bring the application back to its store. So far, that petition has over 4,000 signatures out of the desired 5,000.

Apple has not commented on the takedown, but the Register claims to have received an "off-the-record briefing" in which it was told that Speak for Yourself would be making a comeback if all goes well in court.

Until then, Speak for Yourself is still offering its SFY-Lite application for free in the App Store.

CNET has contacted Apple for comment on the Register's report. We will update this story when we have more information.