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Displaying items by tag: Litigation

Thursday, 20 September 2012 21:51

Where is Apple To Go After the iPhone 5?

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For about the last four months we have been talking about the decline of Apple. We are not saying that they are going to die, or go bankrupt or anything like that, but we are saying that they are no longer going to be the company that they once were. There are many reasons for this that we have covered including a lack of real innovation, a closed eco system, and one of the biggest ones; Tim Cook as CEO. To many this one may come as a surprise, but it is not that much of one really. Tim Cook is a businessman first and foremost. He was the one that proposed moving production and warehousing outside the US. He also has been instrumental in making other very business oriented decisions. However, while Tim Cook is good at running the day-to-day operations of a company, he is not the guy you want in charge at a place like Apple.

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When you start digging there are all kinds of interesting things that you can find. For example in the Samsung V. Apple trial Samsung released documents that claimed a Sony design concept influenced the direction of the iPhone. Apple has now come back with designs that predate the “Sony” mockup that Apple put together by a few months. They (Apple) are now asking for all of Samsung’s evidence about the Sony mockup to be tossed out. We checked and would appear to be something of an unusual request given the grounds for the request. Apple dearly wants the images and depositions of their designers about the Sony mockup removed from the trial.

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There are some interesting things that are coming to light in the Samsung Vs Apple trial. Among them are claims from Apple that Samsung was told by Google, its own staff and “famous designers” that their products were too similar to Apple’s patented design. These are pretty damning items when you think about it and go a long way toward proving that Samsung willfully copied Apple with some of their products. With this it would look like Apple certainly has Samsung on the ropes…

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Yesterday Apple reported their earnings for Q3 2012, asked an Australian court for $2.5 Billion in damages, and were granted a patent for technology that has (again) been on the market for a few years. Although each of these could probably fill an entire article we decided to lump them into one today so we can get to some real news after we wrap things up here. So let’s kick things off with the Q3 earnings call which fell short of expectations almost across the board.

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14621rotten_appleYesterday we talked about a finding posted by the US Federal Trade Commission and sent to the US International Trade Commission on how product bans hurt consumers. Although the finding by the FTC was geared toward standards essential patents it also could be argued that any product ban is harmful to consumers unless the product in question was an outright copy. The comment was aimed at Apple and their pattern of filing for broad patents to ensure they have ammunition against competition.

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73Sometimes things just do not go your way. Apple has been seeing that recently under the guidance of new CEO Tim Cook. We are not going to get into the debate about whether Tim Cook is a better or worse CEO as that is comparing Apples to Oranges. Tim Cook is a different type of CEO; he is a businessman first and foremost. It was one of the reasons that Steve Jobs wanted him in the position he was in. The company needed someone to “mind the back account” more than almost anything else.

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Friday, 12 August 2011 22:20

Who copied who?

Electric-Kettle-with-Tea-Pot-WX-8971-Looks like things are heating up between Apple and Samsung. I am not talking about anything like a war between the two companies or anything like that, but in the realm of stupid and asinine complaints. We kick off things with Apple’s complaint that Samsung “Copied” the iPad and iPhone. They base this in the fact that the Galaxy Tab 10.1 looks like the iPad and that some of Samsung’s phones look like the iPhone… (their words not mine). Apple then goes on to say that Samsung copied the look and feel of the iOS (where have I heard that before).

I hate to say this but, if you were to pick up 20 smart phones they would all be very alike. They are all around the same size and shape and the UI’s are also very close. If you dig deeper, the way they operate are also nearly identical; after all how many different ways can you swipe or tap with your finger? No, this one smells of Apple trying to delay a product that has a very good chance of hurting their sales. There is no other reason to ask for the injunction. The funny thing is that there are almost no real patents being bandied about here by Apple. This is because if they throw those out Samsung has a few of its own to drop on Apple some that could even be tied to the A4 SoC in the original iPad…

For Samsung’s part they are making the claim of “Nuh-Uh!” followed by the “you never said that!” defense. As it stands right now they are pushing for a rehearing on the claim that an injunction was not mentioned or requested in the original complaint. They are also claiming that the judge that approved the temporary ban did so without allowing Samsung to present evidence in its defense.  This is very hard to believe as it represents both an unethical and illegal move by the judge in question. It is even harder to believe considering that an injunction and ban is exactly what Apple went for in Australia.

To be honest both companies are acting a little childish and unprofessional. If you ever wanted to see just how arrogant companies can be here it is, and to top it off you get to see just how ignorant the legal system is to how technology and the tech industry as a whole works.

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Thursday, 11 August 2011 22:11

How Apple does it different

Patent_PendingEveryone talks about Apple innovation and how they are great designers and creators. They have come up with some amazing ideas; marketing ideas. If you look at the history of Apple they have really not “created” much. They have taken ideas and concepts and made them work and in some cases even made them better, but for the most part they have not really created anything new.

For those that are going to nay-say this let’s look at a few items. The original Apple, was based off of concepts that were seen at Xerox and also on the IBM “PC” concept that was out. The Original iPad was taken (as proved in court) from the Creative Nomad MP3 player. The iPod was a much better product, but it was based on the Creative design. You can look back and see this trend in almost all of Apple’s devices. I am not calling apple out on anything new here as this is also the trend with most companies.

Where Apple does things different though is to file a patent on their way of doing things and make those patents so vague and broad that they can easily be extended to encompass almost anything in the event that Apple feels threatened. A case in point on this is one of the core patents in the Apple Vs the world of Android suits around the world. The Patent that was granted by to Apple actually covers “the look and feel” of the way a touch screen works. Excuse me? The look and feel? How to you patent that? Maybe I am wrong, but I thought patents were for technology. As such they should be about the actual hardware and workings involved not the concept or thought. Still Apple has managed to push these through even with prior art in evidence and on the books.

So Apple’s success (and bank roll) comes from being able to market old ideas as new and innovative, and to patent concepts and ideas that are so broad that they can sue anyone that even tries to invent a competitive product. Considering they are getting away with it on a massive scale it is really not a bad business model.

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