Print 39 comment(s) - last by TakinYourPoint.. on Jan 18 at 10:14 PM

Apple gets smacked down again

Apple is on the warpath when it comes to protecting its two biggest moneymakers: the iPhone and the iPad. Samsung has been Apple's favorite punching bag [1][2][3][4] [5], but Motorola has seen its fair share of attention from Apple as well. Now Motorola can add another victory to its tally in the fight against Apple.
An Administrative Law Judge for the U.S. International Trade Commission found that Motorola's Droid family doesn't infringe upon the following three Apple patents:
U.S. Patent No. 7,812,828 [Ellipse fitting for multi-touch surfaces]
U.S. Patent No. 7,663,607 [Multipoint touchscreen]
U.S. Patent No. 5,379,430 [Object-oriented system locator system]

Not surprisingly, Motorola was quite pleased with the ruling and released the following statement:
We are pleased with today’s favorable outcome for Motorola Mobility. Motorola Mobility has worked hard over the years to develop technology and build an industry-leading intellectual property portfolio. We are proud to leverage this broad and deep portfolio to create differentiated innovations that enhance the user experience.
Apple could not be reached for comment.

Sources: CNET, U.S. ITC

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RE: .
By Tony Swash on 1/15/2012 7:04:45 AM , Rating: 0
I think it would accurate to say that Apple has, of all the mobile platforms, the most successful third party application system. Measuring who has the best third party application system can be done using various fairly obvious metrics:

Numbers of apps: iOS has historically had the most apps though Android is catching up fast. Even if as is likely Android overtakes iOS on this metric it is unlikely that iOS users will ever suffer from not having enough apps.

Quality of apps: Hard to find an truly objective metric for this one but it doers seem to be true that in general higher end apps tend to come to iOS first, and that many apps, particularly some of the higher end ones, are iOS only and very few are are Android only. On balance I think it would be fair to say that broadly iOS has some better apps but most really popular apps are available on both platforms. The major area where iOS has a clear and major advantage is in the area of tablet apps, here iOS is miles ahead of Android and the latter does not appear to be catching up.

Developer revenue:Developers make a lot more money, several times as much money, on iOS compared to Android. iOS users seem to be a lot more willing to buy apps than Android users are. That probably means that developer interest in iOS will remain higher than Android.

OS fragmentation: iOS users all get offered, and most install, the latest version of iOS. Android users and developers are limited by the way Android OS updates are controlled, and often not deployed, by the carriers. This makes it harder for developers to write apps for the whole Android user base and for users of older OS versions who may not be able to run the latest and greatest apps.

There is a good chart showing this here

App use: There seems to be ample evidence that iOS is used as platform a great deal more than Android is. IOS users surf the web more, post images on Flickr more, etc than Android users.

In addition to apps of course is the whole question of the general device platform ecosystem. Apple devices have far more peripherals than do Android devices. Apple has the largest and most used digital goods store and library (iTunes). Apple makes integrating iOS devices into corporate IT systems, home networks, and connecting to your TV much easier.

All these various factors translate in to tangible and obvious extra value to the consumer. Which largely explains the popularity of Apple devices. Which is why Apple created the products and ecosystem that they did.

RE: .
By Tony Swash on 1/15/2012 7:09:53 AM , Rating: 1
Apologies for the double post, I have no idea why it happened except I got an odd server error page when I clicked the post button.

RE: .
By Reclaimer77 on 1/15/2012 7:18:53 AM , Rating: 3
Hey no problem. It's just double -1's for you anyway.

RE: .
By Gio6518 on 1/15/2012 9:14:32 AM , Rating: 2
Apologies for the double post, I have no idea why it happened except I got an odd server error page when I clicked the post button.

Probably an Apple error

RE: .
By tamalero on 1/15/2012 9:05:52 AM , Rating: 2
Numbers of apps: iOS has historically had the most apps though Android is catching up fast. Even if as is likely Android overtakes iOS on this metric it is unlikely that iOS users will ever suffer from not having enough apps.

Number of apps is irrelevant.
considering how many of them are identical, repetitive, or just plain copies.
you really think that having 5000 fart apps is making certain service better?

RE: .
By Tony Swash on 1/15/12, Rating: 0
RE: .
By Souka on 1/15/2012 8:06:48 PM , Rating: 2
I "iFart" app is way better than the Droid version...

RE: .
By TakinYourPoints on 1/15/2012 9:34:03 PM , Rating: 2
Number of apps does matter since in the end the number of useful apps is still higher. There is always a garbage:quality ratio, think of how much trash there is on Windows, that doesn't automatically mean that it has nothing but trash applications.

Outside of games and casual apps, business and productivity apps are huge in iOS. This is not just because there are more developers, but also because iPhones and iPads are actually getting deployed in business because they are a far more secure platform than Android. iOS supports 39 ActiveSync policies while Android supports only seven. Android is useless for anything except as a casual device for this reason.

On top of that, businesses know that Apple will support all of their devices for far longer than Android carriers/handset manufacturers will. A 2009 iPhone will be supported in 2012. Legacy support is important, it's a huge reason why Windows is still so popular. The absolute opposite of that is Android where a six month old device won't be supported for OS upgrades.

Microsoft has almost two dozen apps for iOS and is releasing Office for the iPad. They make about a half dozen Android apps and all just simple front-ends for Bing and MSN. This is the tip of the iceberg of app support for iOS, but please, keep making the iFart argument.

RE: .
By retrospooty on 1/16/2012 5:56:09 PM , Rating: 2
LOL... Clearly you do not and never have worked in any IT dept in a real company. Pretty much everything you just said about enterprise/business is wrong.

In the end, in enterprise, and consumer markets, the open platform will win. Apple had a huge 2 year headstart and now are already being outsold 5 to 2.

Better phones? No
Better platform? No
Open platform? No
Cheaper? No

There isnt really anything you can say to change it. You calling Apple a better platform doesnt make it so.

RE: .
By TakinYourPoints on 1/18/2012 8:42:28 PM , Rating: 2
Clearly you do not and never have worked in any IT dept in a real company.

Thank god.

Anyway, here's a very detailed post from someone on another board I go to about why Android has so far been rejected by the large company he works for:

The iPad is not used in enterprise because it's established, it's used because of the 39 or so ActiveSync security policies that can be applied to an ActiveSync compliant device, only iOS devices support them. Android supports around 7, and is essentially entirely useless for anything other than a casual device. It simply isn't possible right now to have a "secure" Android device, or even pretend you have one.

In addition, narrowing it down to one or two tablets is a LOT harder than you think. We were prepared to support the Galaxy Tab for a separate entity we have to support, but the lawsuits from Apple made us change our minds. Bottom line is no company except Apple has a real investment in the success of a tablet and its ecosystem. Google doesn't even come close for the reasons you mentioned.

Now if Google were to get into the tablet business, I think it'd be a total failure. They can't deliver a product that can last, because whatever they make will be immediately aped by another company looking to explore the market without making a substantial investment in it.

I hope none of my comments come across as discouraging competition, because that's not how I feel. I love competition and innovation in the sector, but the fact is after every other competitor shows their stuff off, the long-term stability and short-term supportability and security of iPads vastly outstrips other devices.

The security concern is a very real one.

You're also incorrect about iOS sales, iPhone and Android sales were almost even in the last quarter and the iPad puts that over the top.

RE: .
By TakinYourPoints on 1/18/2012 8:50:03 PM , Rating: 2
One other thing to note is that enterprise deployment has a huge impact on business apps. Android development has flatlined over 2011 while iOS has continued to increase.

So to go over your list:

Better phones? - Unless you need a big screen or keyboard, certainly. They are the fastest for sure.
Better platform? - Better developer support, so absolutely.
Open platform? - I don't care. I use Windows, a closed opertating system that I am very happy with. All the people tooting Android being open should abandon MS and load Ubuntu, or they should STFU.
Cheaper? - Doesn't matter. The best Android handsets cost as much as or more than the best iPhone, and I don't care about the cheap ones. As for saving $100 on a Honeycomb/ICS tablet, I again don't care given that the iPad has faster hardware and better apps.


RE: .
By bug77 on 1/15/2012 5:43:46 PM , Rating: 2
Nice chart you found there.
But according to this:
over 95% of the devices out there are running Android 2.0 or newer. They're not exactly using the latest version, but the platform is far from being fragmented.
2.0 and 2.1 don't support JIT, so if you need high-performance, you can "only" target just below 90% of the devices.
I'm really looking forward to your next post. I'm pretty sure you'll still claim Android is a fragmented platform.

RE: .
By TakinYourPoints on 1/15/2012 9:22:47 PM , Rating: 2
iOS has historically had the most apps though Android is catching up fast.

This is incorrect, Android development has flatlined over the last year while iOS development has continued to accelerate:

Developer revenue:Developers make a lot more money, several times as much money, on iOS compared to Android.

This is true, developers make $0.24 for every dollar they make on iOS with the same application. Combine that with fragmented hardware, operating systems, storefronts, and it is no wonder mobile developers dislike Android, while others (even huge ones like Microsoft) largely avoid it.

One thing Android fans always pointed to was the number of Android activations compared to iOS. Some people made the argument that this was because people would get cheap or free Android devices to activate, not because people were snapping up $300 Android phones in droves. Android fans denied that "cheap" was the main reason people were buying Android en masse, even though high end iPhones were far and away the most popular individual models sold.

The bottom line is that Android had a market share lead over the iPhone because you could get them really cheap or even free over the iPhone. Well, now iPhone has free and cheap options (3GS is free on contract) so they've closed the gap:

So yeah, the "550,000 activations a day" was when there were $30 and free Android phones. Now the 3GS, which is two years old is outselling every other Android phone and the gap in market share has closed up substantially.

"If you can find a PS3 anywhere in North America that's been on shelves for more than five minutes, I'll give you 1,200 bucks for it." -- SCEA President Jack Tretton

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