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Final ruling is still pending; Judge believes that Samsung infringes, but Apple's patents are questionable

For the world's largest phonemaker and world's largest Android phonemaker, Samsung Electronics Comp., Ltd. (SEO 005930) some good news finally came in its lawsuit war [1][2][3][4] [5][6][7] with Apple, Inc. (AAPL). After seeing its flagship Galaxy Tab 10.1 banned from sale in Germany (on the grounds of design patent infringements) and in Australia (on the grounds of technology patent infringements) it has scored an early victory in arguably its most important court battle in the U.S.

I. U.S. Federal Judge to Apple: No Injunction for You!

On Thursday, Judge Lucy H. Koh, a justice in the Northern District Californian federal court, denied Apple's request to ban sales of Samsung's product for now, on one of its four patent claims.

Specifically Judge Koh commented that an injunction was not warranted based on Apple's sole technology patent in the case, U.S. Patent No. 7,469,381.  She called her decision on the patent, which covers document scrolling "tentative" and said she would issue a final ruling "fairly promptly".  She comments, "It took a long time to make that distinction"

Reuters' court reporter writes that the judge commented that she felt Samsung did infringe on Apple's patents, though the report does not clarify whether she indicated which patents she felt were infringed -- the three design patents, or the sole technology patent.  On the other hand, the report says the judge complained that Apple is having problems establishing the validity of its patents.

II. Apple's List Scrolling Patent and Samsung's Violation

The technology patent by Apple claims ownership to temporarily displaying a non-active region to a document, such as a webpage or list, when scrolling, zooming, or rotating.  Our testing indicates that in Android 2.3 Gingerbread -- the OS on the Galaxy S smartphone named in the suit -- that such a capability is indeed present in some places.

In the Gallery app when you scroll downward part of a black empty row is shown when you reach the end of the list of pictures and keeps scrolling.  When you release, the list bounced back to the last row.  

Android Gingerbread Gallery App
Samsung/Google's "slavish" infringement [Gallery App]
 
This scrolling feature is not found, based on our testing, on webpages in the built in browser.  However, a similar feature -- also covered by Apple's patent -- is present.  When you zoom out, you will see gray around your webpage when you reach the edges of the document.  Releasing the zoom pinch will bounce the document back to full screen, as mentioned in the Apple patent.

Browser App Gingerbread
Samsung/Google's "slavish" infringement [Browser App]

 
This patent seems relatively obvious in that it basically covers an animation and if GUI animations were broadly patentable video games as we know them couldn't exist today, software would be litigated into oblivion, and the web would be a ghost town.  That said Samsung will need to follow the path of obviousness and invalidate Apple's patent in court, as it clearly does use the animation technique covered in this patent.  

If Samsung cannot do that for some reason, it should be relatively trivial to remove this feature as the animation does not significantly improve the Android experience in our opinion.

(As a technical note it is operating system maker Google, Inc. (GOOG) who created the infringing design, but Samsung uses Google's OS so is being sued by proxy.)

III. Apple's Design Patents

Now that Judge Koh has tentatively denied Apple's motion for a preliminary injunction regarding the utility patent, the question becomes what she will do when it comes to the design patents -- U.S. Design Patent No. D618,677D593,087, and D504,889.

The first two patents cover the design of the iPhone 4 and iPhone (original), respectively.

The validity of these patents could be question mainly from the perspective of Apple's broad application of them.

Below we have diagrammed the differences between the iPhone designs and Samsung's Galaxy S, which Apple claims "slavishly" copied the iPhone.  Specifically note that the folowing features are different:
  1. Button count and placement
  2. Connectors
  3. Side profile of phone (note the lip on Samsung's design)
  4. Size of screen and general phone size.
  5. Logo/name placement on body
     
Smart Phone Comparison

Similar differences can be found between the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 and the iPad, an early version of which is covered in the final patent.  We've detail these differences between the patent, the actual iPad, and the Galaxy Tab 10. below, which include:
  1. Only Galaxy Tab 10.1 has a camera (compared to the original iPad).
  2. The thickness in the design patent doesn't match the thickness of the iPad or Galaxy Tab (please measure this in an imaging software, in pixels, if you don't believe us).
  3. Bezel sizes don't match between any of the three designs.
  4. Connectors and buttons on the side are different.
  5. Screen sizes and aspect ratios are different.
  6. Only the iPad has a home button.
  7. All tablets are clearly and unambiguously branded.
  8. The back color doesn't match.
Tablet comparison

Really when you look carefully from an artistic perspective (presumably the criteria for merit on a design patent) in both the tablet and smartphone cases the biggest visual similarities are simply the general form factor (thin rectangles) and the color scheme.  In this sense the devices are somewhat similar in looks.

There was a bit of court room drama that's gathered much attention in which Judge Koh held up the Tab and iPad and asked Samsung's lawyer Kathleen Sullivan to identify her company's product.  Ms. Sullivan reportedly could not tell them apart at that distance (it was unclear if Judge Koh was covering the iPad's home screen button).

At that point Judge Koh asked, "Can any of Samsung's lawyers tell me which one is Samsung and which one is Apple?"

At that point one of Samsung's other lawyers finally coughed up the correct response.

While the incident was certainly humorous, it's important to not put too much weight in such court room drama, lest it leads one to misleading conclusions.  One need only remember the controversial O.J. Simpson/Johnny Cochrane "if the glove doesn't fit" showmanship to realize that.

While the designs are somewhat similar in a very general sense, it seems a slippery slope to grant Apple broad ownership of such a design for two reasons.  First, it would create ambiguity of exactly how broad Apple's design ownership is.  Second, it would essentially grant a monopoly on the state of the art smart phone and tablet form factor to Apple.  

Given the radical differences in the designs, it would seem if the designs are found to "infringe" that only Apple can make thin rectangular smart phones and tablets.  This kind of ruling could have a catastrophic effect on many emerging electronics markets.  After all, if this kind of standard was applied to the PC industry, Dell, Inc. (DELL) and Hewlett-Packard Comp. (HPQ) could be suing each other and Apple for copying each others' "general form factor".

Clearly this kind of broad design ownership hasn't been granted in other electronics markets, so it seems doubtful that Judge Koh will rule this way.  But stranger things have happened.

IV. Looking Ahead

In the U.S. patent battle, a final ruling on the preliminary injunction request with respect to all patents will soon be issued.  Given the pressure from wireless carriers Verizon Communications, Inc. (VZ) and Deutsche Telekom AG's (ETR:DTE) T-Mobile USA [1][2], and Judge Koh's previous statements, it seems likely that Apple's request will be denied.

The question then will become whether Samsung can successfully invalidate Apple's patents, or at least escape a design infringement ruling (as the utility patent's infring features could easily be removed).  Also pertinent is whether Samsung can succeed in its counter claim, which sues Apple on the grounds of infringing on many of its 3G communications patents.

There's also been recent action in the Netherlands and Australian arenas, we will update you on this shortly.

Source: Reuters



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Clearing up a few things
By Theoz on 10/14/2011 12:43:01 PM , Rating: 5
Seen a lot of crucial facts left out and editorialized here and elsewhere and feel I should clear up a few things:

1) Patents are a quid pro quo. You invest in research and disclose your invention to the public, then the government gives you a 20 year monopoly on that invention if it is new and inventive. This is huge incentive for research. Without patents research investment would plummet because it would be more difficult to profit from the fruits of that investment.

2) In the US, Apple bears the burden of proving the likelihood of validity and infringement to get a preliminary injunction. Samsung need only show a substantial question about validity of the patent to avoid a preliminary injunction. It should be noted that there are other factors at play that also must be satisfied for a preliminary injunction.

3) In Germany, and likely other foreign countries, the legality of Apple's design patent is legally presumed for adjudicating a preliminary injunction. This may be challenged, but then Samsung would bear the burden of proof (much more difficult to challenge validity than in the US where Apple bears the burden). Furthermore, it is more likely that design patents will be subject of preliminary injunctions than utility patents in Germany since courts apparently think that irreparable harm is more likely in design patent cases.

In summary, I dislike Apple's products and practices as much as the next man, but in this case substantial blame for the preliminary injunction in Germany should be on the laws of Germany and its courts.




RE: Clearing up a few things
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/14/2011 12:57:48 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
1) Patents are a quid pro quo. You invest in research and disclose your invention to the public, then the government gives you a 20 year monopoly on that invention if it is new and inventive. This is huge incentive for research. Without patents research investment would plummet because it would be more difficult to profit from the fruits of that investment.

Though I think your comment was made with good intentions given your latter commentary, I would like to correct you slightly, pointing out that I never said patents were a bad thing.

What I was speaking to with respect to the utility patent's validity was the issue of obviousness.

There's a huge difference between a patent on a complex manufacturing process versus a patent on a GUI feature that takes an hour of programming work to implement.

Again, patenting GUI widgets/animations is just not common place. Otherwise virtually no websites, software, etc. would exist as companies would only monopolies on common page layouts, gui elements, etc.
quote:
2) In the US, Apple bears the burden of proving the likelihood of validity and infringement to get a preliminary injunction. Samsung need only show a substantial question about validity of the patent to avoid a preliminary injunction. It should be noted that there are other factors at play that also must be satisfied for a preliminary injunction.

That's a fair point. I did allude to this, mentioning that the judge reminded both parties about Apple's need to prove the validity of the patents.

A preliminary injunction is only issued typically when one party will be severely damaged if the supposed infringement continues. In this case it's hard to see how a single GUI animations would somehow magically effect Apple's U.S. sales or lack thereof.

quote:
3) In Germany, and likely other foreign countries, the legality of Apple's design patent is legally presumed for adjudicating a preliminary injunction. This may be challenged, but then Samsung would bear the burden of proof (much more difficult to challenge validity than in the US where Apple bears the burden). Furthermore, it is more likely that design patents will be subject of preliminary injunctions than utility patents in Germany since courts apparently think that irreparable harm is more likely in design patent cases.

Your latter point is interesting... I hadn't heard that. Do you have any references to support that? I would definitely consider adding that to future pieces if it pans out. I haven't seen that in reports elsewhere.

quote:
In summary, I dislike Apple's products and practices as much as the next man, but in this case substantial blame for the preliminary injunction in Germany should be on the laws of Germany and its courts.

Oh yes, certainly.

Thank you for the comments!


RE: Clearing up a few things
By Theoz on 10/14/2011 1:18:07 PM , Rating: 3
Regarding #1, not directed at the article, more of a general comment. Basically anything under the sun made by man is patentable. Sweat of the brow isn't a requirement for patentability if the invention is new and inventive. It's hard to legislate to protect the complicated machine taking years to design if you aren't also protecting the 5 second conception of a new GUI design. Both should be equally patentable imo.

Regarding #3, Here is the statute: http://oami.europa.eu/ows/rw/resource/documents/RC... Check out article 85.

Here is an article written by a German patent attorney:
http://patlit.blogspot.com/2011/10/industrial-desi...

Here is more commentary: http://mobile.osnews.com/story.php/25056/The-Commu...

Germany litigates utlity patent infringement and validity in two separate proceedings. For instance, you can win on infringement and two years later find out you actually lost because the patent was invalid. Not sure if that is the same for designs. In the US it is done all at once for both utility patents and designs.


RE: Clearing up a few things
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/14/2011 1:29:01 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
Regarding #1, not directed at the article, more of a general comment. Basically anything under the sun made by man is patentable. Sweat of the brow isn't a requirement for patentability if the invention is new and inventive. It's hard to legislate to protect the complicated machine taking years to design if you aren't also protecting the 5 second conception of a new GUI design. Both should be equally patentable imo.

I disagree with you there. As I said the market as we know it would be dead if GUI elements and animations were broadly patentable. As in you couldn't make a webpage, you couldn't make an OS, you couldn't make an application, because if you sold enough someone would sue you off the market.

Patents should only be granted for non-obvious technologies.

Patenting "making toast" (it's been done) or "swing on a swing" (also done) should NOT be allowed to have a patent. Nor should an obvious animation you can code in an hour.

I'm not saying a time limit HAS to apply. You could create a patentable idea in 10 minutes in my opinion -- but it MUST be non-obvious or the entire patent system is essentially a mound of garbage legal trolling.

quote:
Regarding #3, Here is the statute: http://oami.europa.eu/ows/rw/resource/documents/RC... Check out article 85.

Here is an article written by a German patent attorney:
http://patlit.blogspot.com/2011/10/industrial-desi...

Here is more commentary: http://mobile.osnews.com/story.php/25056/The-Commu...

Germany litigates utlity patent infringement and validity in two separate proceedings. For instance, you can win on infringement and two years later find out you actually lost because the patent was invalid. Not sure if that is the same for designs. In the US it is done all at once for both utility patents and designs.

Thanks for the links on the German design patent atmosphere though!


RE: Clearing up a few things
By Theoz on 10/14/2011 1:46:53 PM , Rating: 2
Not really a disagreement. By inventive I mean non-obvious. Courts have struggled with obviousness (inventive step outside the US) forever. The crazy patents you mention were pre-2007 due to a wacky outgrowth of the law at that time. The Supreme Court cleared it up in 2007 (KSR v. Teleflex) and the really crazy patents are less frequent now in the US. Bad patents get granted due to the limited time a patent office can invest in examining each one, bad examiner training, etc. It's inevitable. That's why we have the courts to hopefully clear these things up. Note that the crazy swing and toast patents weren't litigated.


RE: Clearing up a few things
By sviola on 10/14/2011 2:37:36 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Bad patents get granted due to the limited time a patent office can invest in examining each one, bad examiner training, etc. It's inevitable. That's why we have the courts to hopefully clear these things up.


But isn't this a serious flaw in the system? It means you have to litigate to prove that some patent is obvious and shouldn't be patentable. This may work where you only have large corporations with a lot of money to pay lawyers, but it certainly will prevent smaller players (with not enough money to fight a legal battle against a mega-corporation) from entering the market where that patent applies. Obvious patents shouldn't be granted in the first place.


RE: Clearing up a few things
By Theoz on 10/14/2011 2:58:57 PM , Rating: 3
Yes, no doubt this is a flaw. The subject becomes what to do about it. Obviously, better examiner training costs money and more time on each patent application at the patent office costs money. Enter the America Invents Act (AIA) that was just passed which allows the USPTO to set its own fees. This resulted in an immediate 15% increase in all fees (50% reduction on all fees for small entities existed in the previous law and is maintained, new 75% reduction in all fees for micro-entities which are individual inventors with few previous applications).

Looks good right? The USPTO gets more money for the office to hire more examiners, train them better, allow them to work on fewer cases, and examine cases more quickly. Well, the House of Reps managed to screw it up. For years congress has diverted billions of dollars from the USPTO to other government purposes, thus putting massive financial constraints on the USPTO. The Senate bill that was introduced for the AIA eliminated fee diversion, thus allowing the USPTO to use all of the fees it collects to improve its processes, hire examiners, etc. The house bill (which was ultimately signed into law) maintained fee diversion. So although fees have gone up, the patent office still could be greatly constrained on budget. HoR fail.


RE: Clearing up a few things
By Theoz on 10/14/2011 3:27:41 PM , Rating: 2
Also, some lawyers (even some high-profile firms) will take patent cases on contingency. Such that a "little guy" doesn't need money to sue if he has a good patent with a large potential damage award.


RE: Clearing up a few things
By senbassador on 10/15/2011 2:04:04 PM , Rating: 2
"This may work where you only have large corporations with a lot of money to pay lawyers, but it certainly will prevent smaller players (with not enough money to fight a legal battle against a mega-corporation) from entering the market where that patent applies. Obvious patents shouldn't be granted in the first place."

Its a zero-sum game. If we place the burden of proof on the person making the patent, the small inventive guy in his garage will have his idea stolen right under him by the big corporate guy (think, the Microsofts of the early '80's, Blizzard stealing from small time game makers, etc), where even if their patent is legitimate they won't be able to hire lawyers to protect it. The flip side is the situation that you are describing, the little guy getting sued by the corporate giant over a bs patent.


Poor Apple....
By Cheesew1z69 on 10/14/2011 12:18:17 PM , Rating: 4
No, not really, Apple is going to get what they deserve soon enough.




RE: Poor Apple....
By retrospooty on 10/14/2011 12:27:49 PM , Rating: 2
Legal kharma... I likes it


Genius.
By dark matter on 10/14/2011 12:37:43 PM , Rating: 5
He was a tyrant.
And those who claim he is a genius and allude to "inventions" he had no hand in are merely suffering from stockholm syndrome.




Woah...a judge with (some) smarts
By uhgotnegum on 10/14/2011 12:39:52 PM , Rating: 2
I haven't read through the decision, so I could be making an ass-out-of-you-and-me, but it seems like the judge struck the correct balance b/w the letter of the law and the intent/context in which it was originally created--intent is, I would argue for this situation, appropriate for the judge to consider. These patent laws were not created in the context of our touchscreen, minimalist-hardware world. Though the letter of the law would indicate that Samsung may be infringing, the intent simply may not have considered our current tech. environment.
...I suppose I'm describing the same type of argument b/w originalism vs. non-originalism in Constitutional interpretation.




RE: Woah...a judge with (some) smarts
By Theoz on 10/14/2011 12:54:03 PM , Rating: 2
The factors for a preliminary injunction in the US are:

1) A reasonable likelihood of success on the merits (see my post below, apple bears the burden for proving infringement and validity)

2) irreparable harm to the patentee without a preliminary injunction (if money damages are sufficient to remedy apple's harm and calculable, than likely no preliminary injunction)

3) a balance of the parties' relative hardships

4) the public interest (usually only considered regarding health or safety items)


Non-Obvious
By djdjohnson on 10/14/2011 12:48:48 PM , Rating: 3
Don't patents have to be non-obvious? If so, I think all of these patents are invalid. The form factor is obvious. Not allowing scrolling past the end of a document and returning to the boundary is obvious in a touch environment. Not zooming beyond the boundaries of a document is obvious. Who wouldn't have come up with that functionality if they developed these devices in a tech vacuum?




It's a joke... literally
By nafhan on 10/14/2011 1:01:33 PM , Rating: 3
This stuff is enough of a joke that it's showing up in pop culture, now... There was a recent episode of "The Office" where Dwight is trying to convince everyone how awesome the new Sabre tablets are, and they were triangular! I found it hilarious in light of all of Apple's design lawsuits.




Netherland Ruling a Good Example
By simpleankit on 10/16/2011 5:53:37 AM , Rating: 2
I do not believe apple will get away with injunction in this case, as there are enough dissimilarities. Netherlands court overthrew all design claims by Apple and on good reasons. You may check the same at "http://www.scribd.com/doc/62981838/KG-11-0730-en-1..." (you will need to translate it though if you do not understand Dutch)

For example, when comparing galaxy s with Apple patented designs court noted that :-

4.63. The front of the Galaxy S is indeed also a screen that covers the full spectrum but, unlike the model, a rectangular button. Now the round button to the model an important and striking difference compared to the previous known models, an informed user perceive this as a prominent difference. Furthermore, the slot for the speaker to the Galaxy S bit thinner and wider, and there is a camera-eye next to the slot, the brand Samsung prominent among the speaker and there are buttons on either side of the rectangular center button.

4.64. It should also be taken into consideration that the sides of the Galaxy S, along with various connections and buttons, a sharper angle display instead of the whole convex sides of the model. The back has a pronounced curvature S Galaxy bottom of the unit, which is also visible from the side. Also, the Galaxy S - apart from this curve - what more slender than the model.

4.65. The back also has a prominent, top left and square with chrome surround camera eye. Also, there are visible and the Samsung brand "with Google" while the model has a non-ornate back.

4.66. All in all, the conclusion that the model and the Galaxy S on the informed user a different impression. As already considered, the results of the market do not alter.




Slight note
By borismkv on 10/17/2011 12:35:20 PM , Rating: 2
The zooming and scrolling action is completely different on my Xoom than it apparently is on the Galaxy Tab. In the web browser, there is no action at all when you zoom out as far as possible on the web browser and the gallery view tilts the image thumbnails when you zoom to the end rather than using the snap-back feature. Not sure if this is a change in Android 3.2 (I just got this thing), but it does seem like Samsung may have implemented their own solution here and it does seem to infringe if it's a valid patent. There are other ways to show you've zoomed too far, though.




Honest Opinion
By archaeon on 10/18/2011 8:43:38 AM , Rating: 2
I am not apple fanboi ...
But samsung is evil ...
Steve jobs should've been president of uN,uSA and world ..
This article is biased ... This site is apple-hater ...
This article tells you logic and law but apple is really right ...
I know this because I am lawyer and also computer engineer and also I worked in samsung ...
Curse you apple hating trolls ...
Just an objective opinion of unbiased person [/really speaking the truth]




Aspect Ratios
By drunkenmastermind on 10/15/2011 9:23:01 PM , Rating: 1
Galaxy tab is 16:9 and the ipad is a fucking ugly 4:3 aspect ratio.




Another Quality Article™!
By xype on 10/14/11, Rating: -1
RE: Another Quality Article™!
By Cheesew1z69 on 10/14/2011 12:35:09 PM , Rating: 5
If you don't like it, don't read or comment, it's that fucking simple.


RE: Another Quality Article™!
By Tony Swash on 10/14/11, Rating: -1
RE: Another Quality Article™!
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/14/2011 1:03:19 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
Meanwhile Samsung's attempt to pervert the industry wide FRAND framework to try a desperate counterattack against Apple has bombed. Which is a good thing because without FRAND there would be utter chaos.

see
http://fosspatents.blogspot.com/2011/10/samsung-lo...

and for more background on FRAND see

http://fosspatents.blogspot.com/2011/10/study-on-w...

Florian Mueller's pro-Apple anti-Google stance has been made abundantly clear so I would take his commentary with a grain of salt.

For example he claimed that all Android tablets would be banned as a result of the PI loss by Samsung in Australia, but he was wrong:
http://www.smh.com.au/digital-life/tablets/apple-f...

The Sydney Morning Herald characterized Mr. Mueller's incorrect commentary as "ominous" and quotes an experienced lawyer (Mr. Mueller has no law degree) as saying Mr. Mueller is likely wrong.


RE: Another Quality Article™!
By Tony Swash on 10/14/11, Rating: -1
RE: Another Quality Article™!
By Reclaimer77 on 10/14/2011 2:57:19 PM , Rating: 2
Only 7 of the 12 claimed patents fall under FRAND. Meaning Apple could be infringing on 5 legitimate patents. Not that you would even bother considering the possibility.

It just kind of floors me how hypocritical Apple's legal team is.


RE: Another Quality Article™!
By adiposity on 10/14/11, Rating: -1
RE: Another Quality Article™!
By MaulBall789 on 10/14/2011 3:12:01 PM , Rating: 2
Litigate until they can't litigate no more. Which seems to be the continuing trend.


RE: Another Quality Article™!
By cjohnson2136 on 10/14/2011 3:13:33 PM , Rating: 2
Not all the patents that Samsung is using is covered under FRAND


RE: Another Quality Article™!
By adiposity on 10/14/11, Rating: -1
RE: Another Quality Article™!
By Tony Swash on 10/14/11, Rating: -1
RE: Another Quality Article™!
By themaster08 on 10/15/2011 4:24:30 AM , Rating: 2
Why is it ok for Apple to patent an idea of a generic tablet design, years before its implementation?


RE: Another Quality Article™!
By vesord on 10/15/2011 2:59:20 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Florian Mueller's pro-Apple anti-Google stance has been made abundantly clear so I would take his commentary with a grain of salt.


And what about you, Jason ? Can we say :
Jason Mick's pro-Google anti-Apple stance has been made abundantly clear so I would take his commentary with a grain of salt.


RE: Another Quality Article™!
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/14/2011 12:36:06 PM , Rating: 2
RE: Another Quality Article™!
By W00dmann on 10/14/11, Rating: -1
RE: Another Quality Article™!
By Cheesew1z69 on 10/14/2011 4:40:36 PM , Rating: 5
Want a little cheese with that whine?


Missing the point
By Tony Swash on 10/15/11, Rating: -1
RE: Missing the point
By Reclaimer77 on 10/15/2011 10:36:26 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Once invented many things seem obvious, that doesn't mean there was not a process of invention.


Scrolling and rubber-banding on a UI was invented long before iOS. Again you don't seem to understand. Apple seems to think just because they do things on a touch screen, that makes them unique and revolutionary. It's NOT.

quote:
Apple believes, rightly in my opinion, that one of the key differentiators between it's products and those of it's competitors is it's user experience and the the way the OS and software interacts with and is integrated with the hardware.


Tough. You can't patent an "experience". It's time for Apple to grow up and let the products compete on their own merits. If a tangible piece of tech is infringed on, hey, by all means. But all this touching and feeling and experiences and happy thoughts with rainbows crap just doesn't cut it.

Jobs knew he was dying so he didn't care if his company poured billions into a legal black hole just to further his legacy. Maybe now that he's gone, cooler heads can prevail.


RE: Missing the point
By Tony Swash on 10/16/2011 9:23:48 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Scrolling and rubber-banding on a UI was invented long before iOS. Again you don't seem to understand. Apple seems to think just because they do things on a touch screen, that makes them unique and revolutionary. It's NOT.


Clearly if that is the case then those Apple sues over the rubber banding patent will win and you can relax. What's agitating you is the fact that Apple's case might have merit and they might well win.

quote:
Tough. You can't patent an "experience". It's time for Apple to grow up and let the products compete on their own merits. If a tangible piece of tech is infringed on, hey, by all means. But all this touching and feeling and experiences and happy thoughts with rainbows crap just doesn't cut it.

Jobs knew he was dying so he didn't care if his company poured billions into a legal black hole just to further his legacy. Maybe now that he's gone, cooler heads can prevail.


Apple is perfectly willing to let their products compete in the market place - fairly. That means other companies cannot copy any aspect of Apple's designs, either hardware or software, that Apple have a patent for. It means their competitors have to come up with their own designs.

Wishing away copyright and patents of aspects of software is not going to work and does not make sense. Suppose I start market a clone of Microsoft's operating system, including features like identical scrolling and window controls, a start menu with the same functionality in the bottom left corner, with a logo that looks pretty similar to the Windows logo, with the same names and structure for the menu system, etc, etc and I call that product 'MyWindows' would anybody be surprised if Microsoft sued. Would anybody think that Microsoft suing was some sort of attack on the principal of competition. Of course not. As I said what upsets people is that Apple actually has a case and will probably win enough cases so that Samsung and other will have to retreat from blatant copying.

I note that the president and chief operating officer of Samsung Electronics, Lee Jae-yong, has been invited to Apple Inc's private memorial service for Steve on Sunday and is then scheduled to have a meeting with Tim Cook Apple's CEO. Apple have been making clear moves to find alternatives to Samsung for its multi billion dollar supply contracts and with Apple's legal wins (and Samsung's legal loses) stacking up maybe Samsung can see they would be better off dropping the cloning and copying and moving on. Let's hope so.


RE: Missing the point
By DeluxeTea on 10/17/2011 12:20:35 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Suppose I start market a clone of Microsoft's operating system, including features like identical scrolling and window controls, a start menu with the same functionality in the bottom left corner, with a logo that looks pretty similar to the Windows logo, with the same names and structure for the menu system, etc, etc and I call that product 'MyWindows' would anybody be surprised if Microsoft sued.

Of course Microsoft would sue if you do that because you copied their logo and used a very similar name/brand for it. Samsung never copied the Apple logo and never used similar branding for their Galaxy products.

You really love getting reamed in the ass by Apple, huh?


RE: Missing the point
By Cheesew1z69 on 10/15/2011 1:03:30 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The purpose of the legal action is not to permanently stop the selling of competing products, such a thing is obviously impossible, but rather to use the threat and actuality of product bans and injunctions as a lever to get competitors to remove the various features they have copied from Apple.
Bullshit


RE: Missing the point
By Tony Swash on 10/16/11, Rating: 0
RE: Missing the point
By Cheesew1z69 on 10/16/2011 12:07:07 PM , Rating: 3
You keep saying that they are copying, it's quite obvious by now, they aren't. Dimensions, specs, are different, that by definition, is not copying. You are a seriously disillusion individual. It's that simple.


RE: Missing the point
By Cheesew1z69 on 10/16/2011 12:12:48 PM , Rating: 2
Also, using words such as "pithy", doesn't make you any more intelligent or special. But, I think you may be special in other ways.


RE: Missing the point
By Cheesew1z69 on 10/16/2011 1:22:58 PM , Rating: 2
Also, you just assume Apple is going to win, but I don't think so. Maybe, just maybe, you will get Steve's head out of your ass when they lose.


RE: Missing the point
By Tony Swash on 10/16/2011 1:18:09 PM , Rating: 1
I think that it's very obvious to anyone other than those gripped by debilitating phobia that the phone and tablet designs of company's like Samsung have been developed to look like and follow the design lead of Apple. To argue that Samsung would have developed its tablet or phone offerings to look and function as they do without the iPhone and the iPad is just silly.

The question is this: is the degree of copying, or emulation or trend following or whatever you want to call it that Samsung has done in relation to Apple products legitimate or not?

You say it is legitimate. I say it is probably not.

Surely the only way to decide this is through legal process?

If Apple's claims broadly lack substance then I would expect the courts to broadly dismiss them. It's hypothetically possible even if Apple's claims are wrong that a court somewhere might make a bad decision and uphold them, but unless one is gripped by some sort of paranoid delusion it is simply not conceivable that if Apple's claims lacked substance that a significant number of legal systems in different counties around the world would all make the same mistake and uphold them.

Let's test all these claims, both Apple's and Samsung's, in as many courts as possible and let's live with the outcome.

By the way it's not Apple that will cripple Android with legal claims it's Oracle. And that case does not look good for Google at the moment. If Oracle wins it may mean an immediate world wide ban on all Android devices until Googles agrees to pay punitive damages and licence fees to Oracle. Now that is a show stopper of a legal case.


RE: Missing the point
By Cheesew1z69 on 10/16/2011 1:31:09 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
debilitating phobia
You keep repeating that, I don't think people are phobic. I think you are just insane and it's quite obvious.


RE: Missing the point
By Tony Swash on 10/16/2011 2:52:41 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
You keep repeating that, I don't think people are phobic. I think you are just insane and it's quite obvious.


I am insane because I suggest the best way to resolve all this through due process of law? If that's not the way to resolve it then what is the alternative?

I say that many of the commentators around here are phobic because they are. People who fear and dislike Apple and for whom nothing Apple does is good or justified and everything any of Apple's competitors do is OK. hence the endlessly repeated absurdity that Samsung hasn't copied Apple in it's product design when to any neutral observer it is absolutely obvious that they have.


RE: Missing the point
By Cheesew1z69 on 10/16/2011 3:25:04 PM , Rating: 3
No matter how many times you say they copied Apple, doesn't make it true. And again, because YOU say people are phobic, and keep repeating it, doesn't make it true. Insane. Absolutely insane you are.


RE: Missing the point
By Reclaimer77 on 10/16/2011 8:27:06 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
To argue that Samsung would have developed its tablet or phone offerings to look and function as they do without the iPhone and the iPad is just silly.


Dude wtf? Without Samsung there wouldn't even BE iPads. Who do you think spent BILLIONS in the R&D and manufacturing of the touch screens and CPU/GPU chips that go into iPads and iPhones? It sure as hell wasn't Apple.

quote:
The question is this: is the degree of copying, or emulation or trend following or whatever you want to call it that Samsung has done in relation to Apple products legitimate or not?


Wrong question. The question is are Apple's vague and completely generic and obvious patents legitimate.

I notice you consistently avoid that question which is the real crux of the entire issue. If we allow companies to obtain patents that creates monopolies or uncompetitive practices, that goes totally against the reason we have patents in the first place.

I would sure like to know how in the hell someone can possibly make a tablet that anyone would even want to use without "infringing" on these bogus patents. How about a big round tablet with a touch-pad and mouse pointer, because god forbid anyone make a rectangular pad with GUI touch gestures. I'm sure that would go over GREAT with everyone. Oh and it better not be black either, cause you know, Apple invented that too. /sarcasm

But you don't care. You honestly want to see Apple being the ONLY mobile electronics supplier on the planet. That's what is so scarey about you. You're either a completely insane moron, or highly personally/financially invested in Apple's success. Either option is terrible.


RE: Missing the point
By testerguy on 10/17/2011 12:05:55 PM , Rating: 2
Oh please. Citing a manufacturer and saying that if it wasn't for the manufacturer of SOME parts of a WORLD first product, the product wouldn't exist, is ridiculous.

Taking it even further, and claiming that because they invested in R&D of some random parts of the device that they somehow would have created the entire design themselves, or have a right to recreate it? Worse than ridiculous.

If you claim that the question isn't whether Samsung copied or not, then you realise why Apple has a case to put forward. You're basically saying they did copy, but does it matter?

The answer could well be yes, and all Tony is saying is that the legal system will decide, I don't see any problems with that.

You say a pad can't be made without infringing the patents? That's ridiculous. Apple isn't suing every company who made pads, they are suing Samsung for BLATANTLY, and I really mean Blatantly, copying their whole range, from iPod to iPhone to iPad. The fact that the lawyer couldn't tell them apart says it all. Samsung saw what Apple did, decided 'we want a piece of that cake' and copied it. They probably started out with an exact duplicate, and tried to tweak and change JUST enough so that the patents wouldn't apply.

It's completely morally wrong, it's awful practise (and people like you say Apple aren't innovative) and it may well turn out to be legally wrong too. Moving a button, changing a logo, doesn't change that.


"Paying an extra $500 for a computer in this environment -- same piece of hardware -- paying $500 more to get a logo on it? I think that's a more challenging proposition for the average person than it used to be." -- Steve Ballmer














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