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Surprise Apple win may force OEMs like Samsung and LG to use Windows Phone, although they'll first try to fight it

In June the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) hit gadget-maker Apple, Inc. (AAPL) with an invalidation of most of the claims of its "rubber-band" animation patent.  However, upon closer examination the final ruling crucially preserved the '19 claim that Apple asserted against Samsung Electronics Comp., Ltd. (KSC:005930) in its initial federal lawsuit, which netted Apple $1B USD in a jury verdict.

I. Next on the Banned List

But if that invalidation ruling was a bit of a mixed bag for Apple's crusade to exclude top Android phonemakers' product from the market, the latest ruling from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) on a key touch patent is a flat-out win for Apple, and a surprise win at that.

After an earlier pre-examination found the patent entirely invalid on the grounds of prior art, on Sept. 4 the USPTO issued a reexamination certificate that found that all the claims of Apple's U.S. Patent No. 7,479,949 to be valid.  The patent covers "touch screen device, method, and graphical user interface for determining commands by applying heuristics" a set of ambiguous UI and touch gesture descriptions.

Apple patentSwipingApple Patent
The right to "scroll", "swipe", and type on a modern touch screen are all owned by Apple.

The validation of the patent -- which Apple affectionately refers to as "the Steve Jobs multitouch patent" is dire news for top Android phonemakers and tablet makers like Samsung, LG Electronics Inc. (KSC:066570), and the Lenovo Group, Ltd. (HKG:0992), which could be faced with the choice of having their flagship products banned from sale, or crippled by Apple.

Specifically the multitouch patent covers a variety of now ubiquitous gestures on capacitive multi-touch screens.  For example if you swipe down on a diagonal downward it's interpreted as a scroll downwards -- likewise if you swipe sideways, but your finger doesn't follow an exact straight line.  The patent also covers virtually all multitouch gestures, which are composed by swipes on angles.  Last, but not least the patent covers typing on a virtual keyboard on capacitive screens.

Of course Apple didn't invent any of these things -- multitouch and heuristics for detected angular swipes were available on older resistive touch screens.  However, modern phones don't use resistive touch.  The current state of U.S. technology patents allows you to repatent virtually identical firmware on a new kind of hardware.

Since Apple secured virtually all of the early stock capacitive multitouch screens, which it used in the original iPhone, it was the first phonemaker to release a device with capacitive multitouch.  And as late CEO Steve Jobs once said...


Now the entire industry has shifted to capacitive multitouch -- so aside from those that have licensing agreements with Apple, essentially every other smartphone/tablet on the market is in violation of Apple's patent.  Last quarter the International Data Corp. (IDC) reported that Android represented roughly four out of every five smartphone sales -- so Apple now has the legal firepower to go after most smartphones sold in the U.S., including Samsung's best-selling Galaxy lineup.

II. Android's Options -- Face Likely Ban, or Drop Multitouch, Physical Keyboards

It'd be an unthinkable "solution" for Samsung and others to stop using capacitive multitouch, given that consumers today expect it.  There's no feasible technological alternative at present given that resistive touch would feel remarkably unresponsive by multitouch standards.

Dropping multitouch would be a bad blow to Android -- particularly image-wise -- but not altogether crippling (the original Android, the HTC Dream, aka the "G1" lacked multitouch).  Likewise, not being able to use virtual keyboards would be a major setback -- but not a deal breaker for Android OEMs, who could always return to physical keyboards that were popular in the pre-smartphone era.

Android keyboard
Android devices will now likely have to return to using physical keyboard to avoid being banned.

However, the worst part of the validation for Android OEMs is the validated claims regarding single-finger ("one or more fingers") scrolls/swipes.  Because of that, Android would be required to make it such that their devices would not respond to swipes or scrolls unless users made the swipe in precisely a straight, unbroken line.

Android OEMs still have a very slim hope that they could invalidate or partially invalidate the patent in federal court, especially given that many claims of the patent were invalidated in an earlier phase of the USPTO review, and later reversed.  However, invalidation in a reexamination merely requires a "preponderance" of evidence, where as invalidation in a court case requires "clear and convincing" evidence.  Federal Judges are typically reluctant to challenge the USPTO -- particularly after a patent has been examined.  And given Apple's brand image, it seems unlikely that a jury would suggest that a judge rule its patent invalid.
Apple gavel
[Image Source: CNET]

Now one Android OEM -- HTC Corp. (TPE:2498) -- is safe, as Apple agreed to a licensing pact with it.  It was generally perceived that Apple agreed to this deal as it perceived HTC as a nonthreat (unlike Samsung), but the move could prove a boost if the other Android OEMs are banned from the U.S. market.

Apple has already banned numerous older Samsung devices from shipment into the U.S., in addition to the $1B USD in damages it secured from Samsung using infringement.  Now it will likely look to move aggressively to ban shipments of newer Samsung tablets and smartphones like the Galaxy S4.

Galaxy S II, Galaxy Tab 10.1Nexus 7
Older Samsung devices are already banned in the U.S.

Samsung is forbidden from suing back, for the most part, as most of its smartphone intellectual property are part of standards -- deep hardware inventions.  But in today's patent climate, such innovations are considered diminuitive in value, compared to patenting abstract, ambiguous interface ideas.

III. The Real Winner? Windows Phone

On the other hand the verdict may have an unexpected side effect.  Android OEMs do have one clear escape route -- abandon Android for Windows Phone, a third party platform that's sheltered by Apple's licensing pact with Microsoft Corp. (MSFT).  Given that Samsung is already paying licensing fees on non-Windows Phone devices to Microsoft, such a move could also make financial sense.

So the biggest winner of this surprising development may be Microsoft.

Android OEMs -- even HTC -- also face a second threat from Nokia Oyj. (HEL:NOK1V) who is threatening to ban Android products if Android OEMs don't pay even higher licensing fees for currently unlicensed Nokia patents.  Of course, if the OEMs drop Android for Windows Phone -- whom Nokia has a licensing pact with -- the Android OEMs will have to pay nothing.  In fact, Microsoft -- eager (or desperate?) for a dominant position in the mobile market -- is even offering OEMs like Samsung and HTC money to go Windows Phone exclusive.

HTC 8S
The HTC 8S Windows Phone

Likewise Android tabletmakers may eye a switch to Windows 8.1 as an escape route from bans.  Soon customers' choices in the tablet market may be -- Windows 8.1 tablets (various OEMs), Apple's iPad, or nothing.

So Android OEMs now will either have to pay licensing payments to Microsoft and Nokia on every device sold, plus face possible bans from Apple -- or they must drop Android and switch to Windows Phone. That's likely not the outcome Apple -- or its late cofounder Steve Jobs wanted.  But it's more or less the outcome I predicted when I wrote "Can Microsoft and Apple Kill Google's Android with Lawsuits?" back in 2011.

It will likely be a year or two before this all shakes down, as Samsung will likely have to be smacked with major bans on new product before it begrudgingly would decide to drop Android for Windows Phone.  But I'm warning you to prepare yourself now, Samsung fans -- and Android fans in general -- unfair or not, the legal recourses for keeping a modern, useable Android device on the U.S. market are dwindling fast, thanks to Apple, Microsoft, and Nokia.

So you might want to steel yourself to accept the idea of buying a Samsung Galaxy S6 or S7 Windows Phone.  Unless, that is, you want an iPhone.

Source: SBNation [The Verge] [PDF]



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Apple is a patent troll then...
By SAN-Man on 10/18/2013 2:47:15 PM , Rating: 5
Because Palm clearly did this before them.

So they patented existing technology for the purpose of monopolizing the market through product bans.

How is this legal?

Where is the FTC?




RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By Nortel on 10/18/2013 3:05:18 PM , Rating: 5
Its legal because Fingerworks 'invented' multitouch from 1999 to 2005 (patents files in 2001 to 2005). Apple bought the company and all associated patents.

Simpy stated, other companies are using this technology without paying Apple, who had to pay to gain the patents to implement this in the iPhone/iPad in the first place.

These other companies will now start paying Apple a small royalty; its really not that big of a situation.


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By sprockkets on 10/18/2013 3:13:02 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
Its legal because Fingerworks 'invented' multitouch from 1999 to 2005 (patents files in 2001 to 2005). Apple bought the company and all associated patents.


I guess you put the invented part in quotes because they didn't invent it, right?

Cause they didn't.

http://www.billbuxton.com/multitouchOverview.html


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By Nortel on 10/18/2013 3:21:02 PM , Rating: 3
Indeed that is why I used quotes :)

Fingerworks was granted these patents originally, not for the capacitive aspect but for gesture recognition using multitouch capacitive screens.

Ironically enough, the 1998 Fingerworks capacitive multitouch keyboard is actually in that link.


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By Solandri on 10/19/2013 2:34:31 PM , Rating: 3
Bill Buxton's site has a link to a 1988 Myron Krueger video showing pretty much all the modern touch and multitouch gestures. Frankly the gestures are an open-and-shut case of prior art to me, and any patents from 1988 would be expired now.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dmmxVA5xhuo

(Capacitive multitouch tech is a different matter, since I'm not sure what happened to the companies which initially developed it. They might've all been bought by Apple.)


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By Adonlude on 10/22/2013 4:36:08 PM , Rating: 2
Well I'll be, one of Fingerworks tablets was called the "iGesture Pad". Cool history on the Apple naming monikers.


By pandemonium on 10/23/2013 5:07:32 AM , Rating: 2
I believe InfoGear actually had the original: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Infogear

quote:
Phase 2 – 1995 - 1996 (Bob Marshall, CEO) - Partnership with CIDCO systems and the introduction of the first iPhone (CIDCO iPhone)


If only Cisco didn't back down and would've taken the nomenclature they had the rights to originally, we wouldn't have all these retarded iProducts popping up.

quote:
Apple and Cisco settled their dispute on February 20, 2007. Both companies will be allowed to use the "iPhone" name in exchange for "exploring interoperability" between Apple's products and Cisco's services and other unspecified terms.


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/18/2013 3:19:45 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
Its legal because Fingerworks 'invented' multitouch from 1999 to 2005 (patents files in 2001 to 2005). Apple bought the company and all associated patents.

Simpy stated, other companies are using this technology without paying Apple, who had to pay to gain the patents to implement this in the iPhone/iPad in the first place.
Somewhat, but not entirely true. Fingerworks never described smartphone firmware afaik.

More aptly Fingerworks covered capacitive multitouch for larger devices and Apple tapped those ideas for use on a small screen, describing their firmware in this patent.

There were resistive touch patents that covered similar technology back at the time of Fingerworks' key work that WERE in the phone space actually (which again Fingerworks was not). So no, it's not Fingerworks patents that are at issue here... if it were, Android OEMs (many of whom were patenting similar heuristics/algorithms for resistive touch technology at the time) would be safe.

Arguably you might think these implementations would seem to be "prior art", but the USPTO critically has bought into Apple's logic that patents should be issued on a per-hardware basis, not a per-algorithm basis.

Hence you can implement the same algorithm on new hardware and patent it (well, if you're Apple at least) -- which is what Apple did. The FingerWorks IP MIGHT prop up these patents slightly, by establishing Apple as some sort of early capactive touch authority (by proxy), but arguably FingerWorks' biggest asset was in engineering expertise as it allowed Apple to quickly bring its device to market while it had existing stock locked up.

Now capacitive multitouch is plentiful and is an industry standard -- but because Apple had the entire initial stock locked up and put out a somewhat ambiguous patent describing the techniques used in its firmware, the USPTO argues it now has the sole right to use this ubiquitous technology, a declaration that's clearly marketing changing.

Welcome to the current U.S. IP system...


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By web2dot0 on 10/19/2013 8:05:28 PM , Rating: 3
You don't need "the entire initial stock" to file for your own patent. Other companies could of filed it before Apple actually. It's not like Apple shot all their competitors to death so they can file it first.

According to your absurd logic, no competitor had retina display stock, so if Apple filed it first, it's unfair competition? Let's face it, other companies could of came out with capacitive and retina display first ... but they didn't. Samsung have plenty of firepower to "stock whore" themselves. After all, they have a PhD in manufacturing components and parts ....

There's definitely an argument the validity of re-patenting existing ideas on different technologies. That's the real dilemma. Where do we draw the line on that?

There are samples which there is validity. You can use ideas from different industries and apply it to your own. Presto, instant innovation. In fact, many patents falls into this category.
Are those valid patents? I say yes.

Welcome to Patent Laws.


By Kiffberet on 10/21/2013 7:51:50 AM , Rating: 2
Ideas are great, but until they're applied to something physical, they're not worth spit.

Whether anyone likes it or not, Apple had the idea working on one of it's products, first.

Samsung, HTC and all the other phone manufacturers then came up with the same idea of multi-touch AFTER Apple had led the way.

Same story with Dyson who invented the bagless vacuum cleaner.

He never invented the cyclone, which was used on industrial scale for sorting different density materials or capturing dirt/dust, but he took the concept, miniaturized it and applied it to a household appliance.

Then he build the appliance, effectively inventing it.

That's what Apple did. They owned the rights to the technology and built workable products before anyone else.


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By NellyFromMA on 10/18/2013 4:31:26 PM , Rating: 2
DT reported it, so trust me, ITS HUGE.

/sarcasm


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By Samus on 10/19/2013 12:52:30 AM , Rating: 2
FANTASTIC. Bring back keyboards please.


By Labotomizer on 10/19/2013 9:25:43 AM , Rating: 3
A couple of problems with this though. It should be that big of a deal but Apple doesn't want to license anything to Android. For some reason they would rather ban products than make money off of them. I think it's insane but that is their approach.

Then there's the whole multi-touch was around before, but Apple was the first on a capacitive screen I suppose. Silly to distinguish on something so trivial but that's what the courts did.

Microsoft does have an available alternative that could suddenly see a lot of research to bring down price. PixelSense could allow Android OEMs a tech to license that is better than capacitive if you can get the price down. Great tech really. Just not inexpensive enough for phones/tablets right now. That could change in a hurry though.


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By wifiwolf on 10/20/2013 2:41:09 PM , Rating: 3
Ok, then. So can the other companies, for instance Samsung, re-patent multitouch in a amoled screen? Because i am sure that patent was not covering specifically amoled screens, just as much as the resistive ones are different from capacitive ones.


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By flatrock on 10/25/2013 4:21:58 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
These other companies will now start paying Apple a small royalty; its really not that big of a situation.


That assumes that Apple is willing to license the patent, which at least in Samsung's case they have been unwilling to do.

Apple isn't simply trying to profit from every phone Samsung sells, they are trying to ban them since they are their main competition.

If they are able to use their patent to ban their main competition, they should be declared a monopoly in their market and be forced to give up their walled garden business model. If they are a monopoly they can't tie other products to the monopoly product.


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/18/2013 3:11:31 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
How is this legal?

Where is the FTC?
It's legal, more or less, because our patent system is f--ed up.

Here's how it worked...

At the time capacitive touch was considered a promising technology, but there was little supply and virtually no supply of capacitive multitouch. Apple worked the supply chain to guarantee it had access to all of the initial stock in 2006/2007 so it was first to describe the high level details of the firmware... which weren't exactly rocket science, as they built on the experience from resistive touch and other technologies, albeit on slightly different hardware.

But by the USPTO's book it's okay to repatent those things (scrolling, swiping, etc.) because Apple was the first OEM to give a high level description of the firmware.

If you read the patent, it's true -- EVERY Android smartphone more or less has features similar to the claims (as does the Android OS in general).

But that's not because Apple is innovative, inventive, or otherwise special and different. It's just because there was only one obvious answer in many cases, and Apple managed to get its hands on the parts first and describe that obvious answer.

And since capactive multitouch was the clear front runner for next generation touch displays, by the time supply opened back up it was too late. Apple had its patent, basically due to a logistical win. And because of how the USPTO was run not only was its patent valid -- making virtually every other smartphone that's not from an Apple licensee (e.g. anything other than Nokia, Windows Phone, and HTC) infringing -- but also, Apple has no requirement to license these products... it can simply ban its competitors products.

About the only good news is that the U.S. court system works to slowly to be a totally effective tool in Apple's hands. It's still waiting for the GS3/Galaxy Note II trial to go to jury. And it will be sometime next year -- if not later, before its third lawsuit -- the GS4/Galaxy Note 3 one goes through.

But that said, it's going to be tough for Samsung to keep paying billion dollar verdicts.

The problem is that in the U.S. intellectual property law is designed to stifle competition, and Apple is perfectly happy to use the law to its advantage.


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By Dorkyman on 10/18/13, Rating: -1
RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By MadMan007 on 10/18/2013 6:33:24 PM , Rating: 3
But Google = US company.


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By A11 on 10/19/2013 6:11:25 AM , Rating: 2
Yea, how someone posting here could be unaware of that is a mystery to me.

It reminds me of the people claiming the EU was hating on the USA when it fined MS/Intel because they were ignorant about the fact that these fines came about due to complaints made by other American companies.


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By Stuka on 10/21/2013 11:07:26 AM , Rating: 2
Apple is not suing Google. They are suing OEMs that are using Google software. All of which are foreign firms, other than Motorola, but that case was started by Motorola, not Apple... So there ya go.


By retrospooty on 10/21/2013 11:13:58 AM , Rating: 2
It's not about US vs. foreign companies. The US govt. doesn't give a crap about US companies, they care about "contributing" companies and they vote for and make laws that benefit those companies that "contribute" in the right places regardless of origin.


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By KPOM1 on 10/19/2013 10:24:01 AM , Rating: 2
It's not clear at all that capacitive multitouch screens were the "obvious" next development in smartphones. Remember, the 800-pound gorilla at the time (Nokia - also known for patent lawsuits) had actually moved away from touch screens. Nokia could have cornered that market back in 2005 if it wanted to. Had Apple not made its move, there's no guarantee that HTC, LG, SonyEricsson, Motorola, RIM, or Samsung necessarily would have rushed to capacitive multitouch screens, at least not when they did. Apple not only skated to where the puck was going, they changed its direction, as well. Had they not done so, the rest of the market might still have emphasized physical keyboards (which consumer studies supposedly said people preferred).

Samsung did the same with the "phablet." Had they not discovered that there was a consumer market for oversized screens, we might still have a market largely comprised of iPhone-clones like the original Droid.


By Cheesew1z69 on 10/19/2013 10:38:33 AM , Rating: 2
Yes, a clone with a slide out keyboard . Totally a clone! /rolls eyes

Some of you need to learn what clone actually means...


By Wondering Fool on 10/20/2013 10:28:21 PM , Rating: 2
Sorry, I know that this is slightly off topic but "patent troll" gets thrown out a lot and I had a question.

I recently heard that so called "patent trolls" were now lobbying the government to defend their actions against big corporations lobbying to stop them. I don't recall the exact information but the trolling companies claimed that they actually defend the little guy from corporations and gave an example. Now like I said, I don't recall the details but I was wondering if this argument held any ground. Before you answer, please read as to why I see how this could be a valid argument. Whether or not this actually happens is a different question.

I knew a few guys growing up that actually sold patents. When talking to them about it they informed me that having a patent is kind of a joke. If I owned a patent and a big corporation wanted to infringe on that patent, I wouldn't be able to stop them. If I wanted to sue them I wouldn't stand a chance finding a lawyer to take the case against their army of lawyers. If I wanted to sell the patent to them they either wouldn't care or give me practically nothing for it. So given this information could a different option be to sell it to a patent troll company? They would in essence be a pawn shop giving me a fraction of what the potential value would be to then sue the corporation themselves. I would have much less of a problem getting a lawyer to litigate that deal than getting one to fight for me. I know that I would get way less than what the patent was truly worth but it would still could be a lot better than what the corporation would give me or nothing at all.

So the question remains whether a "troll" would actually be a viable option, because they care about the little guy as much as a pawn shop cares about the junkie that pawned them a stolen watch, but could this actually be an argument that could defend trolls?


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By w8gaming on 10/18/2013 4:00:32 PM , Rating: 3
Well I guess it is probably just too bad as once again Apple essentially blocks competition by using a technologically trivial patent that can be broadly interpreted to cover key interaction method from a person to a touch screen. Luckily there is a loophole, Apple does mention the interaction has to be finger. It's time for Android and Windows device maker to ensure that their capacitive screen can work with both a stylus and finger so it is no longer the same thing.


By inighthawki on 10/18/2013 4:13:28 PM , Rating: 3
I was really expecting the end of your comment to have something to do with toes... I was disappointed...


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By ack on 10/18/2013 5:03:36 PM , Rating: 3
If you read the patent document, the implementations are pretty specific. Most of the patents were designed to be used on small 3-inch screens, and should be possible to workaround or not even use on large screens, tablets and phablets.

Predictive and Swype-type keyboards are not covered in the document, so I'm guessing they do not violate those patents. But it's just speculation, of course.


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By Motoman on 10/18/2013 4:58:58 PM , Rating: 5
This is F&CKING RETARDED.

If there was any "justice" in this system, Apple would just get destroyed for their sheer abusive nature and wiped from the face of the earth.

Destroy them. Demonstrate for all the world how such a horrible company should be treated.

And then utterly dismantle the patent system and rebuild something less likely to be wantonly abused by horrible companies like Apple.

Oh, by the way, all of you idiots with iThings out there - this is YOUR fault. You're the ones feeding the troll.


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By ClownPuncher on 10/18/2013 5:31:06 PM , Rating: 5
Calm your tits.


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By Motoman on 10/18/2013 5:34:52 PM , Rating: 3
Pinch my nipples.


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By ClownPuncher on 10/18/2013 5:55:25 PM , Rating: 3
*Sigh... well, you can never say I'm not a team player.


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By Motoman on 10/18/2013 6:13:44 PM , Rating: 2
lol


By StormyKnight on 10/18/2013 11:22:32 PM , Rating: 2
Taking one for the team, CP?


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By inighthawki on 10/18/2013 7:05:58 PM , Rating: 4
Maybe we should just point the EU in the direction of its next cash cow. A nice large fine for using it's money and market position to bully its competition with patent abuse. A nice candidate for them.


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By A11 on 10/19/2013 6:13:33 AM , Rating: 1
Ignorance is bliss.


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By Jeffk464 on 10/19/2013 11:55:42 AM , Rating: 5
I would boycott apple except I've never bought a single product from them.


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By topkill on 10/19/13, Rating: 0
RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By kmmatney on 10/18/2013 6:57:25 PM , Rating: 1
It might be a silly patent, but when I went to the AT&T store to get my first smartphone 4 years ago, I tried out all the phones. I specifically wanted a phone that was easy to browse the web with. I didn't intend to buy an iPhone, but it was the only phone that worked well on web pages. The biggest feature which separated it from the other was the zooming features, using your fingers to zoom in and out. No other phones had this - neither Palm phones, Blackberry or the early Android phones. I ended up buying the iPhone just for this feature, which I had never seen before, but worked amazingly well. To zoom on a webpage with the Android phones, you double-tapped or pressed an on-screen button.


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By w8gaming on 10/19/2013 4:20:24 AM , Rating: 2
The problem with this is you can double click and get the zoom in effect on an Apple device as well. Other vendors are not crying foul for Apple to use such features, probably because they either do not patent such a trivial UI method, or simply do not see anything wrong with other vendors such as Apple using such an intuitive and trivial approach. But Apple is patenting everything that goes into their design, no matter how trivial or obvious, and prepare to use them one day as a weapon to block competition. I am sure other vendors are now learning from Apple are doing exactly the same thing now, at the end all companies will have to spend more time and effort in litigations and acting like patent trolls than actually invent new technology to make better products. Apple might be winning now but this approach is going to turn on them when everyone else doing exactly the same thing and patent every single trivial things.


By Omega215D on 10/19/2013 1:39:00 AM , Rating: 2
There's also the concept of the digital desk:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=laApNiNpnvI


RE: Apple is a patent troll then...
By Tony Swash on 10/19/13, Rating: 0
By Cheesew1z69 on 10/20/2013 10:05:08 AM , Rating: 3
quote:
I find the degradation of language in these debates pretty tedious.
Just as much as we find your constant Apple trolling tedious...


Ehhh whatever
By RjBass on 10/18/2013 3:10:22 PM , Rating: 5
I'll buy a Windows phone and then flash it to the latest Cynagen mod release. Screw Apple.




RE: Ehhh whatever
By retrospooty on 10/18/2013 3:23:37 PM , Rating: 2
I wouldnt even worry about it. Nothing will be banned. You will go into any wireless store and buy any phone you want just like always. Apple can piss and moan and hypocritically cry "copycat" all they want. It changes nothing.


RE: Ehhh whatever
By Monkey's Uncle on 10/18/2013 3:29:25 PM , Rating: 2
That won't help.

Problem is that this would force Google to either remove the functionality from Android altogether or license it (not likely). That AOSP code that the cyanogenmod team gets from Google will be without this functionality. And since the CG team does not pay licensing fees, they can't legally add it back themselves.

In short if apple wins this, they have the ability to pretty much hose over all their competitors -- at least until google creates the better version of it that is free of apple's purchased IP.


RE: Ehhh whatever
By retrospooty on 10/18/2013 3:39:58 PM , Rating: 2
None of that will happen. #1, appeal #2 everytime this is looked at by another entity the descision changes... On again, off again, back and forth. If, in the end it's upheld by appeal (and I highly doubt it) Google will guru another method.


RE: Ehhh whatever
By augiem on 10/18/2013 4:18:11 PM , Rating: 4
By the time it gets through the courts we'll all be plugged into the matrix.


RE: Ehhh whatever
By Monkey's Uncle on 10/18/2013 8:38:42 PM , Rating: 2
You mean you're not??!! O.o


JUST SELL HARDWARE
By rsmech on 10/18/2013 8:44:34 PM , Rating: 2
Phones and tablets should by powerful enough by now that Samsung and all others should sell the hardware and let users choose OS. Fine bundle some phones but why not allow for reformatting like desktops and install your choice. Switch whenever you feel like it. Reduces manufacturers liability. Sell limited Android OS with 3rd party add ons to increase functionality.

Maybe not entirely like I said but something along those lines. We do it on desktop and laptops.




RE: JUST SELL HARDWARE
By inighthawki on 10/18/2013 8:50:24 PM , Rating: 2
Because the set of drivers is typically super specific to the device. One size does not fit all.


RE: JUST SELL HARDWARE
By rsmech on 10/18/2013 9:10:41 PM , Rating: 2
That's because this is where we stand today. I'm sure it would be possible between hardware and software manufacturers to allow genetic drivers during install than update specific drivers after.


RE: JUST SELL HARDWARE
By Just Tom on 10/28/2013 1:52:53 PM , Rating: 2
Genetic drivers sound really cool


Sorry
By sprockkets on 10/18/2013 3:10:08 PM , Rating: 2
But there are a number of factual errors in this article.

quote:
The validation of the patent -- which Apple affectionately refers to as "the Steve Jobs multitouch patent" is dire news for top Android phonemakers and tablet makers like Samsung, LG Electronics Inc. (KSC:066570), and the Lenovo Group, Ltd. (HKG:0992), which could be faced with the choice of having their flagship products banned from sale, or crippled by Apple.


Nope. Samsung already worked around this patent. This was noted in the ITC ban, and is why no new phones will be banned.

quote:
Of course Apple didn't invent any of these things -- multitouch and heuristics for detected angular swipes were available on older resistive touch screens. However, modern phones don't use resistive touch. The current state of U.S. technology patents allows you to repatent virtually identical firmware on a new kind of hardware.


True. Which is why perhaps they should have used different evidence to invalidate it. This patent is an insult to those who use heuristics in software every day.

quote:
Since Apple secured virtually all of the early stock capacitive multitouch screens, which it used in the original iPhone, it was the first phonemaker to release a device with capacitive multitouch.


Technically true. But the first demo of a multi touch phone was the FIC openmoko phone, which touted pinch to zoom google maps, back in Dec of 2006 IIRC. It was released though some days after the original iphone.

quote:
However, the worst part of the validation for Android OEMs is the validated claims regarding single-finger ("one or more fingers") scrolls/swipes. Because of that, Android would be required to make it such that their devices would not respond to swipes or scrolls unless users made the swipe in precisely a straight, unbroken line.


No, it could just follow the finger exactly. Or do whatever Samsung already does.

quote:
On the other hand the verdict may have an unexpected side effect. Android OEMs do have one clear escape route -- abandon Android for Windows Phone, a third party platform that's sheltered by Apple's licensing pact with Microsoft Corp. (MSFT). Given that Samsung is already paying licensing fees on non-Windows Phone devices to Microsoft, such a move could also make financial sense.


Not when Nokia has 90% of the market already, and they are going to exit it.

Fun rumor, even Nokia was evaulating to go Android as of this year. Why else would MS deem it necessary to purchase them?

quote:
Android OEMs -- even HTC -- also face a second threat from Nokia Oyj. (HEL:NOK1V) who is threatening to ban Android products if Android OEMs don't pay even higher licensing fees for currently unlicensed Nokia patents.


Nope and hopelessly false. Currently as an example, Motorola has a license to Nokia's patents. It seems only HTC refuses to license them. And Nokia is banning ALL their phones, including their WP.

quote:
So Android OEMs now will either have to pay licensing payments to Microsoft and Nokia on every device sold, plus face possible bans from Apple -- or they must drop Android and switch to Windows Phone. That's likely not the outcome Apple -- or its late cofounder Steve Jobs wanted. But it's more or less the outcome I predicted when I wrote "Can Microsoft and Apple Kill Google's Android with Lawsuits?" back in 2011.


Motorola is laughing at you right now - they pay nothing to MS and escaped every ITC ban MS threw at them. Their patents are useless, and will be expiring in the next 3-7 years as they date back in the WinCE days.

quote:
It will likely be a year or two before this all shakes down, as Samsung will likely have to be smacked with major bans on new product before it begrudgingly would decide to drop Android for Windows Phone. But I'm warning you to prepare yourself now, Samsung fans -- and Android fans in general -- unfair or not, the legal recourses for keeping a modern, useable Android device on the U.S. market are dwindling fast, thanks to Apple, Microsoft, and Nokia.


I'm sorry Jason, but it sounds more like Florian Mueller wrote this article. And he's been wrong every time about Android's death.




RE: Sorry
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/18/2013 3:38:08 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Nope. Samsung already worked around this patent. This was noted in the ITC ban, and is why no new phones will be banned.
Partially true. The ITC noted this, but the ITC did not evaluate that workaround in depth. The ITC simply deals in LIKELY guilt. It's perfectly possible that Apple will still manage to troll Samsung in court where you're dealing with a jury, not professional judges. It will be up to Samsung to convince a jury in Apple's backyard (San Francisco) to accept Samsung's "workaround" and reject Apple's claim that it is invalid and still infringes. What are the chances of that, you think?
quote:
True. Which is why perhaps they should have used different evidence to invalidate it. This patent is an insult to those who use heuristics in software every day.
Agreed.... that's the issue with software patents. Sometimes if you reduce the description to a significant level of ambiguity it covers all possible solutions within a certain space.
quote:
Technically true. But the first demo of a multi touch phone was the FIC openmoko phone, which touted pinch to zoom google maps, back in Dec of 2006 IIRC. It was released though some days after the original iphone.
Yes, and as I say above it wasn't due to innovation... it was due to Apple locking up early multitouch stock and being the first to describe a firmware description and making that description sufficiently ambiguous that once hardware supply has loosened sufficiently it could troll everyone -- dastardly to be sure, but it worked to some extent.
quote:
No, it could just follow the finger exactly. Or do whatever Samsung already does.
What does Samsung do? It's possible that they're doing exactly what you suggest... but that'd make their phone very hard to use. Ultimately I'd guess their current implementation still falls within the scope of the claims just because they're so d--n ambiguous.

I don't like this! Don't get me wrong. But read the patent for yourself and tell me that isn't the case.
quote:
Not when Nokia has 90% of the market already, and they are going to exit it.

Fun rumor, even Nokia was evaulating to go Android as of this year. Why else would MS deem it necessary to purchase them?
Nokia's 90 percent is now Microsoft's 90 percent. Nokia is essentially Microsoft's Surface phone. Nokia and Microsoft are perfectly happy to bring more OEMs into the tent. Your claim is patently false.
quote:
Nope and hopelessly false. Currently as an example, Motorola has a license to Nokia's patents. It seems only HTC refuses to license them. And Nokia is banning ALL their phones, including their WP.
Wrong. Microsoft's acquisition of Nokia's phone division included a license for Windows Phone devices. That should protect Windows Phone OEMs on all NEW products from suits from Nokia Oyj. (not to be confused with its now-Microsoft device division).


RE: Sorry
By sprockkets on 10/18/2013 3:44:50 PM , Rating: 2
OK, sounds more reasonable. But

quote:
Partially true. The ITC noted this, but the ITC did not evaluate that workaround in depth. The ITC simply deals in LIKELY guilt. It's perfectly possible that Apple will still manage to troll Samsung in court where you're dealing with a jury, not professional judges. It will be up to Samsung to convince a jury in Apple's backyard (San Francisco) to accept Samsung's "workaround" and reject Apple's claim that it is invalid and still infringes. What are the chances of that, you think?


Don't know, but they aren't suing them over that patent in court for round two, or round one. Maybe because it would be actually easy to shut down if shown right?

quote:
Wrong. Microsoft's acquisition of Nokia's phone division included a license for Windows Phone devices. That should protect Windows Phone OEMs on all NEW products from suits from Nokia Oyj. (not to be confused with its now-Microsoft device division).


Microsoft has a non-exclusive license to their patents for their own devices they will make, which is necessary since they will be making the phones under their own name. The license does not extend to anyone else that uses WP software.

Dude, just read your article you posted about HTC being banned: They banned the Radar 4G - that is not an android phone, it runs WP7.


Reality Check
By KPOM1 on 10/19/2013 10:33:17 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Samsung is forbidden from suing back, for the most part, as most of its smartphone intellectual property are part of standards -- deep hardware inventions. But in today's patent climate, such innovations are considered diminuitive in value, compared to patenting abstract, ambiguous interface ideas.


Jason is completely mischaracterizing FRAND patents. Standards-essential patents may be no more and perhaps even much less innovative than non-standards-essential patents. It may be as simple as a specific algorithm for frequency hopping or time division. Any number of other technical solutions might work equally as well or better. But standards setters need to agree on one so that networks are interoperable. So they grant one such patent owner a monopoly with the agreement that the patents are licensed on fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory terms. Everyone is forced to use them to comply with the standard, so the owners agree to commoditized royalties, and courts and regulators are reluctant (though not always opposed) to allowing patent owners to use SEPs to obtain import bans.

No one is forced to use a non-SEP to comply with a standard. Yes, some, like capacitive multitouch can become vital through market forces for commercial success, but no one is required to incorporate those technologies by any standard setter or government. And commercial markets can change quickly. Other OEMs can implement and patent non-touch gestures. If those transform the market, then those OEMs will be in a similar position as Apple is today. Nokia's patent trove (far larger than Apple) didn't prevent Apple and Samsung's rises.




RE: Reality Check
By Wazza1234 on 10/20/2013 6:57:42 AM , Rating: 1
Notice how someone down-voted you despite your comment being absolutely correct.

It obviously wasn't anti-Apple enough for this site.


RE: Reality Check
By retrospooty on 10/20/2013 6:45:19 PM , Rating: 3
Funny how you still dis' the site, yet you just can't stay away. Here you are on your third userid affer being banned twice because you can't behave like a decent human being. And still you keep coming back to spreading your crap. Seriously what is wrong with you?


Alarmist Post
By KPOM1 on 10/19/2013 10:05:10 AM , Rating: 2
This post seems somewhat alarmist, even coming from Jason Mick. Not even pro-Apple, pro-Microsoft, anti-Android blogger Florian Mueller has made these fantastical claims that Samsung, et. al will either have to introduce physical keyboards or go with Windows Phone.

First of all, even "final" rulings aren't final. Courts can and often do amend them further. Also, Apple was willing to enter into a licensing agreement with HTC, so they can and do continue to make Android phones, some of which, like the HTC One, are as nicely crafted as some of Apple's products.

Samsung remains one of Apple's biggest suppliers, in addition to being its biggest competitor. Realistically, the IP wars won't change that. Apple and Samsung have spent years litigating to a relative standstill, with Apple coming out with a somewhat strengthened bargaining position in the US, and largely neutral in the EU. I've long thought that the endgame is a global cross-licensing agreement once the court rulings have become final and it is clear which, if either party is in a stronger position.




RE: Alarmist Post
By Cheesew1z69 on 10/19/2013 6:52:47 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Also, Apple was willing to enter into a licensing agreement with HTC,
After they sued them and had thier phones banned from being sold.


RE: Alarmist Post
By Wazza1234 on 10/20/2013 6:52:07 AM , Rating: 1
quote:
After they sued them and had thier phones banned from being sold.


Because HTC wasn't willing to pay to license the technology before they realised that if they didn't their phones would be banned.


Majority Rules
By mike66 on 10/19/2013 1:03:18 AM , Rating: 2
Banning android products in the US is not too harsh on manufacturers, the major market is now going to be china, we know how willing they are about over looking things like patents, even better if they say to the US that the downturn in their manufacturing sector due to the banning of android products requires the Chinese to recall their lone's to the US so they can cover the monetary loss.
I don't care about the US ban as I live elsewhere in a more enlightened world. lol.




RE: Majority Rules
By A11 on 10/19/2013 6:29:36 AM , Rating: 2
China is only the major market for lowend phones and while that makes for a nice revenue stream the real profit is made on highend phones in the US/EU.

Apart from that your speculation about loans is straight out of a conspiracy theory.


curruption
By capcomdevil on 10/19/2013 3:38:48 AM , Rating: 2
US Patent and Trademark Office and Juridical Law completely bribery by apple.

just wondering why so much Anti Trust case appear and why not apple been investigate by US Federal Trade Commission or Europian Union.




RE: curruption
By A11 on 10/19/2013 6:38:19 AM , Rating: 2
legal or illegal?
By sulu1977 on 10/19/2013 4:54:30 PM , Rating: 2
Any law that's illogical, unfair or irrational is an illegal law. If you don't believe this, then the Nazi holocaust actions were perfectly legal because....Hitler MADE IT LEGAL!




RE: legal or illegal?
By Wazza1234 on 10/20/2013 6:54:47 AM , Rating: 2
Hitler's actions would be against international law.

Domestic matters ARE legal if the laws of that country say so, unless they breach international law. Because people don't get to just decide what they feel is illogical, unfair or irrational. Because people are illogical, unfair and irrational more than legal systems are.


By stm1185 on 10/19/2013 6:00:24 PM , Rating: 2
Android why get it? It has apps, it's an alternative to iOS, it has good hardware made by the likes of Samsung.

All things Samsung could bring to WP if it had to. Or Tizen or FireFox or Ubuntu...

Android grew because Apple was only on ATT, MS had it's thumb up it's rear, and it was the cheap solution for 3rd party companies, which then got it the dev support which then cemented it's position.

But Android itself, the actual phones are fragmented and do not get updated regularly as they have a paint of shit on them from every hardware maker slowing down the process.

The real things that shine on the OS, are not the OS but rather apps in its ecosystem. Apps that can be moved.

What good is Android beyond it's App ecosystem? It's not very power efficient, it has dozens of different UI's, none of them really great, it still has input lag and responsiveness issues.

Android itself is not very good at all, what makes it good is companies like Samsung and a legion of App Developers. So losing Android is not a big loss.




By retrospooty on 10/20/2013 5:42:59 PM , Rating: 2
Clearly you don't know a damn thing about Android in the year 2013. Totally uneducated comment. good luck with that kind of thinking.


Keyboards...
By domboy on 10/18/2013 3:44:36 PM , Rating: 2
No idea how all this will pan out, but I do admit I wouldn't mind seeing more physical keyboards... that's the one thing I miss from my "dumb phone" Samsung Seek (it had a slide out keyboard) that my shiny new smart phone lacks... and my typing speed and accuracy is way down as a result...




Maybe samsung will buy HTC
By Philippine Mango on 10/18/2013 4:33:18 PM , Rating: 2
Reducing market competition by buying out competitors! Wonderful!




Nothing is certain yet
By ack on 10/18/2013 4:35:49 PM , Rating: 2
My guess (and only a guess) is that the Swype-type keyboard won't be affected. Also, a slightly altered touch-type keyboard could be enough to bypass the patent.

It will be up to Google to make sure they have slightly different "heuristics" to patent. Given the low bar the US places on patents, workarounds should be possible and maybe even make for new patents.




By rudolphna on 10/18/2013 5:01:38 PM , Rating: 2
Well if all happens as Mick's doomsday prediction says, I will be keeping my HTC One for a very long time.

Fuck apple.




By YearOfTheDingo on 10/18/2013 7:51:49 PM , Rating: 2
What's with all this anti-Microsoft trolling? Apple sues Samsung for patent infringement and suddenly it's a grand conspiracy to force Android-maker into Windows Phone. Seriously, WTF?




Boom
By zlandar on 10/18/2013 8:56:18 PM , Rating: 2
Looks like Steve's ICBM is preparing for reentry...




By puplan on 10/18/2013 11:30:30 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
There's no feasible technological alternative at present given that resistive touch would feel remarkably unresponsive by multitouch standards.


The claims of this patent are touch technology agnostic - they cover all technologies, current and future. That's why specific technology is not mentioned in claims as that would reduce the scope of patented "invention". Here is what patent description reads:

"...any of a plurality of touch sensing technologies now known or later developed , including but not limited to capacitive, resistive, infrared, and surface acoustic wave technologies, as well as other proximity sensor arrays or other elements for determining one or more points of contact with a touch screen 112..."




Samsung
By cyberserf on 10/18/2013 11:39:22 PM , Rating: 2
the best they could come up with is a curved screen because they can't steal from Apple anymore. LOL




By kamiller422 on 10/19/2013 12:26:10 AM , Rating: 2
Got to be a Jason article. Still holding out hope it'll have its break out moment. Hold your WP tight. :-)

I need some Groklaw analysis, but alas, no more. :-(




currupted
By capcomdevil on 10/19/2013 3:43:25 AM , Rating: 2
US Patent and Trademark Office and Juridical Law completely bribery by apple.

just wondering why so much Anti Trust case appear and why not apple been investigate by US Federal Trade Commission or Europian Union.




Soon enough...
By majorpain on 10/19/2013 9:40:51 AM , Rating: 2
Pretty sure next one will be "Everyone has to pay royalties to Apple for inventing breathing using tubes or something..."
Think its easier for the OEMs just to abandon USA market and invest elsewhere... Apple owns USA anyway...




By ZorkZork on 10/19/2013 5:37:28 PM , Rating: 2
The US version would be crippled to conform to whatever junk patents apply.

Then the rest of the world could take a break from the silly US patent system and enjoy phones with all the functionality that makes sense. And US customers could put the international software on their phones and do the same.




samsung
By b534202 on 10/20/2013 3:52:13 AM , Rating: 2
Samsung just needs to make their 'gesture without touching the screen' thing work to bypass this then, right?




idiot courts
By DocScience on 10/20/2013 5:03:30 PM , Rating: 2
The key point is anticipation.

If a previous invention is merely used in a new environment, the new use is clearly anticipated by the pre-existing art, and UNPATENTABLE.

Sadly, it seems the courts in their woeful lack of technical literacy, can't anticipate ANYTHING.




Win8
By p05esto on 10/20/2013 7:00:52 PM , Rating: 2
Windows 8 phones are very good anyway, I'd argue much more enterprise and reliable than Android devices. Everyone I know with Android phones has freezes, call problems, restarts, crashes, etc. It could just be me but my Win8 phone has been rock solid and with Verizon the call coverage and quality is good.

What does this have to do with the article? Nothing really, other than to say if Android dies it won't be a big deal, there are better alternatives.




Time for Obama to step in....
By GotThumbs on 10/20/2013 9:07:05 PM , Rating: 2
Just as Obama stepped in before regarding a ban......he should step in now.

This is absoluly nuts. This just solidifies that FACT that I will NEVER own an Apple product.

This company is pure evil IMO.

I just keep seeing how stupid our society and our "justice system" continues to get.

It's time to stop the insanity.




What's the problem?
By faust67 on 10/21/2013 4:07:09 AM , Rating: 2
If I understood correctly, Apple's patent what the same as previous patents, but applied to a new kind of touch screen technology? WTF? Well, if it is the case, and I was Google, I would hurry to buy some other touch screen technology out there (I would be surprised if there is not half a dozen companies developing or already offering other touch screen technologies - Samsung?) and then I will patent gestures on that other technology. Problem solved. I don't think it will slow down Android one bit. Google is not composed of morons, so by the time potential bans are applied (1, 2 years?), Google will have moved on. Just a big waste of time and money. So far Apple has not managed Android from gaining market share. All these patent crap is ridiculous.




The answer...
By jotch on 10/21/2013 9:34:41 AM , Rating: 2
...is surely this?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-24475893

No need to touch the screen ;)




One more option not considered
By gman64 on 10/21/2013 1:17:13 PM , Rating: 2
Google can simply sell or license Android to Microsoft. Microsoft can win big by finally having a successful mobile product, and Google can refocus on it's core competencies of Google search, Google maps, and Chrome.




Apple & Microsoft's Cozy Arrangement
By msmda on 10/21/2013 2:11:42 PM , Rating: 2
Apple & Microsoft's Cozy PC Arrangement since 1997 has been for Microsoft to hold the monopoly on commodity PC's, and Apple comfortable to have the high-end high-profit percentage of the market.

It may not be paranoid to suspect they want the same cozy arrangement for the phone sector, or that MS planned to save Apple in 1997, if you read up on Microsoft history of sophisticated tactics.Search for:

Slaying Apple - alexstjohn

Mac Office, $150 Million, and the Story Nobody Covered - roughlydrafted

Microsoft's Plot to Kill QuickTime - roughlydrafted

1990-1995: Why the World Went Windows - roughlydrafted

Why I hate Microsoft - vanwensveen

How to Get Your Platform Accepted as a Standard - Microsoft Style - groklaw

Complaint U.S. v. Microsoft - justice

A History of Anticompetitive Behavior and Consumer Harm -ecis

Studying Exclusionary Deals with OEMs Techrights

Predatory Pricing - Microsoft's Modus Operandi thismatter




By GeneMosher on 10/21/2013 5:39:41 PM , Rating: 2
I created virtual ten-key number pads and keyboards on capacitance touchscreens in 1985 for my ViewTouch Point of Sale system. How the Patent office, nearly 30 years later, can uphold a patent on this is utterly beyond belief. I offered help to Samsung to provide them proof of prior art on this but it looks like their decision to decline my offer has come back to bite them.

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Comdex_1986...




By Shadowmaster625 on 10/23/2013 8:48:43 AM , Rating: 2
Apple should be hit with a violation of the Sherman antitrust law for attempting to corner the market on smartphones through blatantly nefarious legal tactics. $10 billion fine. Good day.




Ridiculous...
By chrono79 on 10/23/2013 1:18:27 PM , Rating: 2
The real problem here is how the US Patent office operates. Nothing so ambiguous should be able to be patented. This is a big loop hole in our system. Apple knows this and many other computers know it too. It's easy money for companies. File a grey-area patent... accuse someone of violating... make profit... Apple is using the loop hole to destroy the free market for their own gain. The real losers are the consumers.




And this is why
By mushiki on 10/18/2013 5:29:20 PM , Rating: 1
And this is why im buying a Xiaomi MI3
Sick tired of this patent wars overpricing the smartphones.
This patent system really needs a review




Reality check
By Tony Swash on 10/18/13, Rating: -1
RE: Reality check
By Tony Swash on 10/18/13, Rating: -1
RE: Reality check
By drycrust3 on 10/19/2013 3:21:53 AM , Rating: 2
Kodak made a camera that used the same or similar technology to what Polaroid did, and Polaroid took Kodak to court and won. The end result is no one could buy a Kodak instant camera.


RE: Reality check
By inperfectdarkness on 10/21/2013 7:40:03 AM , Rating: 2
RD-Ram. But the difference in that case was that Rambus didn't claim a draconian chokehold on everything remotely competing with it. So even though there was a legal restriction regarding that specific product, the competition was allowed to devise alternatives to it.

Apple, on the other hand, claims intellectual copyright via nebulous affiliation. That is to say that--according to their lawyers--if it operates in even a tenuously-related manner to an Apple product, it MUST be infringing on Apple's IP. Of course, this happens completely without regard to prior-art that existed pre-Apple.

At this point, I'm surprised that Apple hasn't tried to patent the BIOS and sue every MFG that creates one--because it wouldn't be that much further-fetched than where we are now.


RE: Reality check
By rsmech on 10/18/2013 9:25:35 PM , Rating: 3
Don't know why you were rated down, maybe just habit. But you have a good point. I haven't and don't know anyone. This is just the new way of corporations. Beg, borrow, steal, and sue. It hasn't really changed my options. We're just the village idiots making stories from all the thunder caused by the clash of the titans.

I take a risk agreeing with you. Lol.


RE: Reality check
By rsmech on 10/19/2013 12:23:31 AM , Rating: 2
Darn it I knew that would happen.


RE: Reality check
By mushiki on 10/18/2013 9:47:10 PM , Rating: 1
well i must agree with you on that,the devices will be always available to buy.
Thing is.. if this checks out, future devices will be EVEN more expensive, companies will have to pay patent royalties.
HTC is already paying up to microsoft an amount for each android device for example.
Smartphone prices keep increasing because little crappy details like those.

And again thats why im gonna buy a xiaomi mi3 :)


RE: Reality check
By sprockkets on 10/18/2013 11:31:51 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
Can anyone give any concrete example of a device of any sort made by anyone that they personally were prevented from buying because of any sort of restrictions caused by any sort of IP or patent legal action?


HTC One X - delayed due to customs hoarding the One X for compliance with Apple's ITC ban on HTC phones.

Samsung Galaxy Nexus - Took off the Google play store due to preliminary ban due to patent infringement on universal search. Feature removed from all devices.

Oh I'm sorry, did I just call you out on your BS? Didn't think that someone would have actual examples of apple stopping their competitors from shipping phones, even for a brief period due to their litigation, huh Tony?


RE: Reality check
By Tony Swash on 10/19/13, Rating: -1
RE: Reality check
By retrospooty on 10/19/2013 7:29:53 AM , Rating: 2
"My argument is simple. This is a storm in a tea cup. Porn for those with strongly partisan tech company or platform affiliations but of little consequence in the wider real world. I repeat - all the patents and IP legal actions around mobile device technology in the last five years has had close to zero impact on end users."

Exactly. The article itself is just clickbait. In the end, you walk into the same wireless store/etailer (wherever you buy stuff) and you buy the same product you were gonna buy before this nonsense happened.


RE: Reality check
By Reclaimer77 on 10/19/2013 8:39:10 AM , Rating: 2
Retro my man, you know better than that.

Tell that to people who wanted to buy an HTC One X a bit over a year ago, when they were subject to an ITC ban because of Apple.

There is a REAL cost to all these legal assaults, and that cost is being passed onto the consumer in the form of increased prices and choice disruption.


RE: Reality check
By retrospooty on 10/19/2013 9:28:52 AM , Rating: 2
That actually came to a ban, and it was unavailable for what, a few weeks as I recall (correct me if I am wrong).

I don't agree with what Apple is doing nor the hypocritical way they do it, but like I said in the end you can buy the same product you were gonna buy before. Nothing will come of it. I am sick of even thinking about it. I have my new LG G2 and next year I will buy the next phone that I want and so on. Apple sucks, and acts like a spoiled child, pisses and moans and in the end it doesnt matter.


RE: Reality check
By Piiman on 10/19/2013 9:47:52 AM , Rating: 2
"Exactly. The article itself is just clickbait. In the end, you walk into the same wireless store/etailer (wherever you buy stuff) and you buy the same product you were gonna buy before this nonsense happened"

Until Apple gets them all banned and you know they will try.


RE: Reality check
By retrospooty on 10/19/2013 11:00:24 AM , Rating: 2
Hell yes they will try... "try" being the keyword. Even if Apple were right (and they aren't) and the patent system wasn't broken (which it is) and the appeal rules to ban (I am sure it wont) It's still not gonna happen. Before it even got far enough for consumers to revolt the US carriers would put a stop to it.


RE: Reality check
By Reclaimer77 on 10/19/2013 10:06:05 AM , Rating: 2
In your OP you specifically said "any" examples.

People gave you some. You were wrong, now just shut up and go away. Everyone knows your agenda here!

quote:
Then there are those who seem to fret excessively about who pays who amongst very large corporations whose shares they don't own.


Hmmm you mean this guy who predicted Apple hitting $1,000 a share a while back? Who obsessed constantly over Apple's market cap and used it in nearly EVERY SINGLE argument?

Who was that Tony?


RE: Reality check
By retrospooty on 10/19/2013 11:06:11 AM , Rating: 4
"Hmmm you mean this guy who predicted Apple hitting $1,000 a share a while back? Who obsessed constantly over Apple's market cap and used it in nearly EVERY SINGLE argument?"

That was Tony until the stock dropped... Then it was no longer important. Now yesterday Google stock spiked 15% and went over 1000, so stocks are even less relevant than ever. Then the most important thing was platform utilization, because Apple's was higher, but now that Android has caught up there, what is important is 64bit in a phone. LOL. It's a moving target based on the argument that benefits Apple at any given point in time.

The thing that still amazes me is he posts on and on like everyone doesnt see exactly what he is doing. If Apple announced tomorrow they were getting into Space travel Tony would be scoring the net digging up dirt on SpaceX, Virgin Galactic, etc. to make them look bad. Freegin batty.


RE: Reality check
By Tony Swash on 10/19/13, Rating: -1
RE: Reality check
By Rukkian on 10/21/2013 3:31:06 PM , Rating: 1
Maybe the reason that there have been few issues so far is due to outcry about it, but is hasn't been for a lack of trying.

One thing that has come out of it, is that devices do cost more than if companies did not have to deal with this crap. While I have no numbers to back this up (no way to know that), the lawyers are the only people making out on this, which I don't really care to see the money I want to spend on a device going to lawyers.

If we could get out of the petty, idiotic lawsuits, maybe tech could have already advanced much further than it currently is. We will never know, cause there is no way to go back and change it.


RE: Reality check
By symbiosys on 10/19/2013 5:27:37 PM , Rating: 2
I remember quite clearly (and I wish I could reference the post) about Tony saying Apple WILL be the first company to break the $1000 dollar share mark, like an unstoppable force!

The amount of passion he put into his argument was remarkable.

Since then I have just filtered out his posts.

Enjoy.


RE: Reality check
By sprockkets on 10/19/13, Rating: 0
RE: Reality check
By Tony Swash on 10/20/13, Rating: -1
RE: Reality check
By Reclaimer77 on 10/20/2013 12:32:31 PM , Rating: 3
You're a clown.

You asked for examples, people gave them, and you constantly move the goalposts to keep your failed narrative alive.

quote:
And how many customers, other than the IP law obsessed, actually noticed? My guess would be none.


Perfect example. This is completely and utterly intellectually bankrupt thinking. And you KNOW IT! You're just flailing about, grasping for anything that keeps your pro-Apple agenda going.

So you state the number of users who don't notice universal search isn't available is "zero". First off I would like to know how you arrived at that one-sided prediction. Secondly just because the average user doesn't KNOW a feature was forcibly removed from their devices because of IP conflict, doesn't mean they wouldn't have benefited from it!

You have totally abandoned all logic and common sense in your tireless pursuit of all things Apple. And the premise of your argument is entirely myopic. The market is being influenced, and competition in the market harmed, regardless of whether or not people en-mass know it!


RE: Reality check
By Tony Swash on 10/20/13, Rating: -1
RE: Reality check
By Cheesew1z69 on 10/20/2013 4:10:00 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Apple phobics addicted to high blood pressure lap this crap up, crap that DT will continue to serve to all covered in a lovely sauce of cheap journalism, but really you should just move on for the sake of your mental health (what's left of it).
Says the mental Apple tool...


RE: Reality check
By bug77 on 10/19/2013 5:16:45 AM , Rating: 1
Stupid me, how could I think this is about stifling competition when it is in fact a harmless case of extortion. Thanks for opening our eyes again, Tony.


RE: Reality check
By Wazza1234 on 10/19/2013 7:32:46 AM , Rating: 1
He was asking for an example of how the 'stifled competition' you claim actually affected what you were able to buy.

Do you have one?


RE: Reality check
By bug77 on 10/19/2013 11:11:28 AM , Rating: 1
1. I made no claims in my post.
2. A couple of examples have already been posted.

Can you read? And I don't mean recognize letters, can you follow a text?


RE: Reality check
By Cheesew1z69 on 10/19/2013 11:13:55 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Can you read? And I don't mean recognize letters, can you follow a text?
Tony Swash 3.0, he is just like Tony....


RE: Reality check
By rsmech on 10/19/2013 9:06:26 PM , Rating: 2
Who is Tony 2.0?


RE: Reality check
By Cheesew1z69 on 10/19/2013 9:13:15 PM , Rating: 2
There are a few, lol. Hard to keep track of them all!


RE: Reality check
By retrospooty on 10/20/2013 9:36:58 AM , Rating: 3
No, Wazza1234 is Testerguy. Not "like" testerguy, he is testerguy.

Going for his 3rd ban I can see. LOL... Loser cubed.


RE: Reality check
By Wazza1234 on 10/20/2013 6:49:45 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
I made no claims in my post.


If that was true then your post was absolutely devoid of content and wasn't worth posting.

quote:
A couple of examples have already been posted.


But they are not your examples. Which is what, as I explained to you, is what he was asking for. And even the people who wrote those examples weren't talking about they themselves being unable to buy a device.

quote:
Stupid me, how could I think this is about stifling competition when it is in fact a harmless case of extortion


And as it seems you yourself are 'unable to follow a text', this comment clearly makes the sarcastic claim that the issue in this case is that competition is stifled, not extortion. And the point remains, he asked for an example - he wasn't denying that this could stifle competition (as you implied), but questioning its significance. And your reply didn't include any examples, nor address anything he actually said.


RE: Reality check
By ritualm on 10/21/2013 2:16:05 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
If that was true then your post was absolutely devoid of content and wasn't worth posting.

So are every single one of your posts.

Your previous handle: testerguy2
http://www.dailytech.com/CommentUser.aspx?user=295...

Your current handle: Wazza1234
http://www.dailytech.com/CommentUser.aspx?user=295...

Your posts are not only "absolutely devoid of content and wasn't worth posting", they are also downright inflammatory, bordering on slander and libel. All so you can pretend to win an Internet argument against those who disagree with you.

Your posts have a pattern. You don't post on anything except Apple- and Android-related articles. When you do, you go on all out PR support for Apple, repeatedly shouting down the rest of us as idiotic and other slanderous diatribe. Look at Tony Swash - at least he made posts on global warming, and he made you look bad over your use of the slang "chav" in the other thread.
quote:
And as it seems you yourself are 'unable to follow a text'

You are mentally incapable of following a straight line, even if you get n+1 retry attempts at it.

Really, TG. If you think you're so good at belittling others, you should go audition as a FOX News anchor. You're already gunning for a third permban on DailyTech - keep going, self-ownage master, I can't wait to see what happens next!


RE: Reality check
By Cheesew1z69 on 10/21/2013 2:30:43 PM , Rating: 3
And before TesterGuy2, it was TesterGuy.


RE: Reality check
By retrospooty on 10/21/2013 2:42:59 PM , Rating: 3
"Your posts are not only "absolutely devoid of content and wasn't worth posting", they are also downright inflammatory, bordering on slander and libel."

"Your posts have a pattern. You don't post on anything except Apple- and Android-related articles. When you do, you go on all out PR support for Apple, repeatedly shouting down the rest of us as idiotic and other slanderous diatribe"

"You are mentally incapable of following a straight line, even if you get n+1 retry attempts at it."

http://i.imgur.com/UaZH6Mq.gif


RE: Reality check
By Reclaimer77 on 10/20/2013 12:40:38 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
He was asking for an example of how the 'stifled competition' you claim actually affected what you were able to buy.


That's a false narrative. It requires a crystal ball to answer, and he knows it.

It's impossible to quantify how much consumer choice and competition has been harmed, because we don't have a control group comprised of an identical smartphone market to compare it to.

quote:
Do you have one?


Actually I do. And you and Tony keep wanting to ignore it and pretend it didn't happen.

For almost a month people couldn't purchase an HTC One X because Apple secured an import ban based on absurd patents.

Do yourself a favor; if you want to have any credibility left here, shut up and concede that this was a major blow to an Apple competitor, and competition was momentarily stifled.

There, you and Tony keep asking for "an " example, and we gave you one. What BS are you going to come back with now?


RE: Reality check
By retrospooty on 10/20/2013 12:48:24 PM , Rating: 2
"Do yourself a favor; if you want to have any credibility left here"

Testerguy after his 2nd ban is now on his 3rd ID Wazza1234. Hist first ID already had zero credibility. The 2nd was banned immediately after going right on the attack. This new ID is nothing but Loser cubed - a pathetic attempt to keep the angry troll engine rolling.

You're sad TG. Really Sad.


RE: Reality check
By Wazza1234 on 10/20/13, Rating: 0
RE: Reality check
By retrospooty on 10/20/2013 6:30:57 PM , Rating: 3
No, I do not. I have never accused anyone of being Tony, or you other than you right now. I'm calling you out, Testerguy. Are you even bothering to deny it? Sad l3


RE: Reality check
By Wazza1234 on 10/21/2013 2:36:10 AM , Rating: 1
I've been browsing this site for a while, and I've seen you and others call so many people 'Tony', 'Tester' and some other names.

Total paranoia.


RE: Reality check
By retrospooty on 10/21/2013 8:14:16 AM , Rating: 3
Drop the act. We already know Testerguy. If your gonna post, have the balls to admit it.

l3


RE: Reality check
By Wazza1234 on 10/20/2013 6:08:04 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
That's a false narrative. It requires a crystal ball to answer, and he knows it.


You don't need a crystal ball to detail your own experiences.

quote:
It's impossible to quantify how much consumer choice and competition has been harmed


He didn't ask for that.

quote:
For almost a month people couldn't purchase an HTC One X


Did YOU want to buy an HTC One X during that month?

If not, you're not answering his question.

quote:
Do yourself a favor; if you want to have any credibility left here, shut up and concede that this was a major blow to an Apple competitor, and competition was momentarily stifled.


I haven't expressed any opinion on the impact of this case, although it is clearly grossly exaggerated as retrospooty pointed out in many comments.

My point was simply that nobody was answering Tony's question. His point was much the same as retrospootys - the actual impact of this is minimal.

Not sure why you're quite so angry.


RE: Reality check
By Reclaimer77 on 10/20/2013 8:15:28 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
Did YOU want to buy an HTC One X during that month?


Okay if you want to play that game, yes, I sure did. Now what have you got to say to that?

Give me a break, how childish is this argument? It's myopic in the extreme. There's a lot more to this than some cheery picked sample of personal experiences.

quote:
My point was simply that nobody was answering Tony's question.


Nice try, your real purpose is far more transparent.

quote:
the actual impact of this is minimal.


That's speculation, the ruling just came down. It *probably* will be, but nobody can truly say what the impact will be yet.


RE: Reality check
By Wazza1234 on 10/21/13, Rating: 0
RE: Reality check
By retrospooty on 10/21/2013 12:12:22 PM , Rating: 2
"Tell that to the dozen other posts on this article saying precisely the same thing, such as retrospootys."

Don't use my name as an example. I was putting up a simple and specific point (one that I think you basically agree with prior to your neurotic behavior kicking in). You as always, devolve into arguing semantics and breaking things down to a level they don't belong at or need to be at and your point gets lost in your rants. It's ridiculous.


RE: Reality check
By Just Tom on 10/28/2013 2:54:07 PM , Rating: 2
I was not personally affected by the Jim Crow laws and slavery but I think both are pretty awful.


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