Inc. (AAPL) is currently riding high on its victory over
rival Samsung Electronics Comp., Ltd.'s (SEO 005930) in Germany. German
courts sided with Apple and banned sales of Samsung's tablets, as they say Apple owns
exclusive rights to minimalist tablet designs. As reports indicate that
Samsung is currently the only major Android company currently coming close to
rivaling Apple in sales, Apple for now enjoys a court-enforced monopoly on the
tablet market for the time being.
motherboard, CPU, and chipset maker VIA Technologies, Inc. (TPE:2388) has just filed suit in U.S. Federal Court in
Delaware, seeking to ban sales of Apple's iPad and iPhone, which it says
infringe upon three of its U.S. patents. VIA is also seeking damages and
has asked for a trial by jury.
VIA writes, according to a copy of the complaint obtained by Bloomberg,
"The products at issue generally concern microprocessors included in a
variety of electronic products such as certain smartphones, tablet computers,
portable media players and other computing devices."
The company seems in good position to see success. The Delaware court is
known as a plaintiff friendly region, akin to the Eastern District Federal
Court of Texas.
For VIA the suit is somewhat personal, as the company has close ties to
"patent poor" HTC Corp. (SEO:066570), a recent target of Apple's intellectual
property aggression. VIA recently sold its S3 Graphics subsidiary to HTC for $300M USD.
VIA had already won a lawsuit against Apple for patents held by S3 -- HTC
is now using that victory to try to force Apple to cross license the IP that
would allow it to continue to sell Android tablets and smartphones in the U.S.
and other regions.
with Samsung, HTC, Nokia Oyj. (HEL:NOK1V),or Google, Inc. (GOOG) subsidiary Motorola Mobility, VIA likely does
not make any products that Apple can target in countersuits.
Apple started the patent war last year by suing HTC claiming
infringements on various technology patents (such as interrupt-based processor
undervolting) and its iPad/iPhone design patents. Since then the war has
swept the globe, reaching WWII-esque proportions. On one side sits
Samsung, Google, and HTC (and effectively, VIA); on the other side sits Apple.
The Android team has been arming themselves. Aside from the S3
acquisition, Google's purchase of Motorola served to consolidate
the manufacturers patents for use by the greater Android coalition. And
Google recently purchased 1,000 patents from International Business
Machines, Inc. (IBM) to further aid in the defense of
The escalation poses significant risk to Apple's bottom line. While
there's a small chance the company will be able to leverage the lawsuits to
retain tablet market dominance and regain dominance in the smartphone sector,
there's a strong possibility that the plan make backfire. If the Android
allies win their countersuits , Apple may see its own products banned.
Furthermore, many have suggested that Apple's campaign may be hurting Apple's "cool"
brand image. After all, as one top blogger told DailyTech,
"It's hard to seem cool when you're suing everybody."
quote: On the other hand, at least Apple isn't getting ready to launch tanks and fighter jets at their competition. Also, they don't drop agent orange on villages. They also don't put people in jail for smoking a little herb, even if that herb helps sick people feel better.
quote: ... and they don't contract to a company that treats their slaves bad enough that they jump off buildings to end it all.wait. Now there's nets. Everything is a-ok in Apple's world now.
quote: It's strange how your "actual data" is propping up a misconception.I think you'll find that most people who commit suicide, don't opt to bother going to work to do it.Also, you don't have data on how many Foxconn employees committed suicide but didn't do it at work! With the numbers already so close, 7 vs 9.9, it's almost a certainty that Foxconn employees did commit suicide at a higher rate.
quote: Yet when you think about, 7 out of the supposed 9.9 suicides per 300,000 people came from Foxconn.
quote: The problem is that the problem requires much more data, specifically, the employment status of all those who commit suicide. How many people in the average are unemployed. How many work for other companies.Yes, ignoring all other factors 7 is less than 9.9, but the world doesn't work that way. Its like the facts about marriage and divorce rates. People freak out about the "50%" divorce rate without ever looking at the rest of the needed info. The percentage of marriages that end in divorce include people who have been married any number of times.Two people can have one lifelong marriage, while another two can have six all end in failure (2 people married 3 times each, all failing because the 2 people cannot be happy in a marriage). That leads to four people having an 85% divorce rate!Got a bit off topic... but the point is valid. If everyone who commits suicide in China are unemployed, except those working at Foxconn, then there is a big problem with Foxconn.
quote: The data I have found does not support the proposition that the suicide rate at Foxconn is unusually high.
quote: The data I have found does not support the proposition that the suicide rate at Foxconn is [or is not] unusually high [because it fails to include any variables related to Foxconn in the least]
quote: ... and yet, this is yet another way your thinking is wrong.If the "general population" rate is 9.9, that would INCLUDE the Foxconn workers as part of the general population (you cannot subtract random company employees as they are comprising the population)!It would mean 71% of all suicides were Foxconn workers. I do not think 71% of all suicides were Foxconn workers, but this does show just how contrary to your argument that your supposed "data" and speculations are.It would not surprise me at all if some other nearby manufacturer had even higher suicide rates by %, but that is immaterial to the current argument we're wasting time on.
quote: Yes, I realize you have no idea WTF I am talking about.You want to over simplify and that does not work when it ignores the relevant variables.Your mistake was assuming that Foxconn employees are not ALSO a subset of the general population, that if you try to contrast their suicide rate, you also have to include that rate as part of the general population rate.Believe what you like. Outsourcing aside, none of the companies I do business with have to install nets to try to save suicidal employees.Ponder that.
quote: But seriously, Tony:That is a gross misuse of statistics. You cannot just use the general populace suicide rate and compare it with the Foxconn suicides. It should be compared to the suicide rates of the pertinent demographic - working age people that are employed. If you want to be more consistent, all working age people that are employed in the factories of electronic manufacturers. Find out the suicide rates among the people covered by this demographic. After you have gotten this data, only then the comparison will hold weight.Or simpler yet, find out the suicide rates of Hua Wei and ZTE and compare it to Foxconn.
quote: Also, they don't drop agent orange on villages.