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Print 57 comment(s) - last by Samus.. on Mar 13 at 2:41 AM

There's no telling where these talks stand, though, or whether Android phonemakers will buy the proposal

Apple, Inc.'s (AAPL) legal war with the "Big Three" of the Android world -- HTC Corp. (TPE:2498), Samsung Electronics Comp., Ltd. (KS:005930), and Google Inc.'s (GOOG) nearly-acquired subsidiary-to-be Motorola Mobility -- has taken on legendary status as worldwide courts have been swept up in a torrent of suits and countersuits [1][2][3][4] [5][6][7][8] [9][10][11].

The gadget-makers' open war has drawn international scrutiny, particularly when contrast to Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) who has largely thrived and profited off a softer approach of offering licensing [1][2][3][4].  Apple claimed to have once offered Samsung such a deal, but it had made no efforts of late to license -- until now.

The official NASDAQ Newswires service is reporting that Apple is in deep talks with Android's big three, looking to settle the lawsuits for a per-device payment of between $5 and $15 USD -- between 1 and 2.5 percent of the devices' purchase price.  That's on-par with the licensing rates Microsoft has demanded.
Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1
Apple has reportedly offered to allow Android smartphone and tabletmakers to pay a fee of between $5 and $15 per device to avoid infringement lawsuits.
[Images Source: 9to5Google]

Is it possible that Apple has turned its back on the demands of its late co-founder and CEO Steven P. Jobs, who promised to "spend every penny" of Apple's fortune in destroying Android in court?

Mr. Jobs stated in his authorized autobiography:

I will spend my last dying breath if I need to, and I will spend every penny of Apple's $40 billion in the bank, to right this wrong. I'm going to destroy Android, because it's a stolen product. I'm willing to go thermonuclear war on this.

Steve Jobs
Steve Jobs successors seem to be losing the stomach for the self-destructive war against Android he set in motion. [Image Source: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg/Getty Images]

But following the shut-down of portions of Apple's iCloud service in Germany thanks to Motorola's push-email lawsuit Apple's new leadership may be growing wary of the high cost in attrition that Mr. Jobs' conflict with Apple has wrought. The Motorola decision represents a serious threat to Apple for a couple reasons.  

First, it represents a new breed of Android legal attack on Apple.  Where as past Android lawsuits from Samsung and Motorola have largely relied on wireless standards patents, raising questions about abuse given the patents' "fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory" (FRAND) licensing requirements, the Motorola suit relied on non-FRAND IP and thus is thought to be much stronger.  With Google, Motorola Mobility, Samsung, and HTC "following in Apple's line" in picking up the pace with patenting seemingly trivial software embellishments and features, the odds of Apple being forced to drop more features in the future seems increasingly likely.

Second, Apple relies on image – much more than Android phonemakers, in general.  It would be a public relations nightmare for the gadget maker if it had to take services like the iCloud offline or had to remove features from its devices.

There's no telling whether HTC, Motorola, or Samsung will accept the detail -- or even how serious Apple is about pushing for licensing.  But if indeed brokers a truce, this would be a win for consumers, as Android phonemakers would escape without too severe financial repercussions, while Apple would gain the extra cash it needs to stay competitive in a global market dominated by Android's much more diverse selection of devices.

At the end of the day consumers want choice, and product bans are antithetic to that end.

Source: NASDAQ Newswires



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i think i speak for a lot
By GulWestfale on 3/7/2012 9:34:25 PM , Rating: 3
of people when i say

FUCK APPLE




RE: i think i speak for a lot
By mfed3 on 3/7/2012 10:43:43 PM , Rating: 4
agreed. customer choice wins in the end.


RE: i think i speak for a lot
By Schadenfroh on 3/7/2012 11:54:34 PM , Rating: 3
Give this man a 6!

Google and the Open Handset Alliance need to pool their patents and fight the parasites / patent thugs of Apple and Microsoft.


RE: i think i speak for a lot
By Samus on 3/8/2012 1:27:01 AM , Rating: 2
At least this shows Apple is shaking in its boots.


RE: i think i speak for a lot
By mellomonk on 3/9/2012 5:32:23 AM , Rating: 3
Hands down the most ignorant thing I have seen stated this week. Congrats.


RE: i think i speak for a lot
By Samus on 3/13/2012 2:41:35 AM , Rating: 2
turn your sarcasm detector on, mello. Apple is utterly clueless.


RE: i think i speak for a lot
By MGSsancho on 3/8/2012 3:27:21 AM , Rating: 2
The original idea behind a consortium was to pull resources together makes specs and push technology forward. In addition they are formed with cross-licensing deals to avoid this and push new products out onto the market faster.


RE: i think i speak for a lot
By fteoath64 on 3/8/2012 6:10:23 AM , Rating: 2
Here here. And the Justice Department of US is not doing anything because it does not benefit them at all yet ?. This market taxing mostly illegal claims are going to stun the market in the long run.


RE: i think i speak for a lot
By adiposity on 3/8/2012 1:22:15 PM , Rating: 2
Let's hope it takes more than saying "fuck you" to garner a 6 in these forums. Giving it a 5 is bad enough.

I mean, we all know the average poster here is no fan of Apple, but modding the comment up as if it is a great insight?


RE: i think i speak for a lot
By adiposity on 3/8/2012 6:34:27 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Let's hope it takes more than saying "fvck you" to garner a 6 in these forums. Giving it a 5 is bad enough.

I mean, we all know the average poster here is no fan of Apple, but modding the comment up as if it is a great insight?


Apparently, it is considered a negative to point out that saying F-U to a company is not worthy of mod points.


RE: i think i speak for a lot
By tpb3470 on 3/8/2012 2:47:06 PM , Rating: 4
I agree, hiring lawyers instead of developers, engineers, sales people has worked so well for other companies like Rambus and Kodak


By Schadenfroh on 3/8/2012 8:36:52 PM , Rating: 2
I do not recall Google demanding $15 for every Windows Phone or iOS device sold. The Open Handset Alliance would just be defending themselves via counterclaims until the industry is able to come up with a massive cross-licensing deal to end this drama.

Sadly, Google has mostly left HTC, Samsung and the others to fend for themselves (save for the upcoming Motorola treasure trove)... notable exception being the Oracle lawsuits against Google.


RE: i think i speak for a lot
By Gondor on 3/8/2012 7:12:13 AM , Rating: 3
This can be done more subtly ... Google should make a counter offer, accepting Apple's proposal while charging exactly the same amount for Apple's use of soon-to-be-acquired Motorola Mobile patents. That, or just hard press them with their opwn portfolio.


RE: i think i speak for a lot
By wordsworm on 3/8/2012 10:26:18 AM , Rating: 2
It's not Google who would pay for the per-set usage unless they start selling smart phones through their Motorola brand. It's the companies who put Android on their phones that are being targeted.


By Cheesew1z69 on 3/8/2012 10:40:11 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
unless they start selling smart phones through their Motorola brand
Um, Motorola already sells smartphones...


RE: i think i speak for a lot
By Solandri on 3/8/2012 2:13:02 PM , Rating: 3
No, it's the same reasoning Apple used to dodge Motorola's patents. Motorola licensed them to Qualcomm, and the parts of the iPhone which used the patents were Qualcomm parts. So the fact that Qualcomm had licensed the patents indemnified Apple from Motorola's patent claims.

Same thing would happen if Google entered a licensing deal with Apple for Android. That fact that Google had licensed it would indemnify any companies which used Android on their phones.

The bigger issue here is that Apple's patents are (IMHO) pretty weak. They're UI and usage patents, mostly obvious stuff that nobody else patented because it was so obvious they figured they'd never be granted (e.g. green phone icon to make a call (Motorola had this first in the 1990s but never patented it), Android's pull-down notification bar which Apple "borrowed" for iOS). The patents Motorola et al are wielding are hardcore technology patents. Stuff that makes wireless communications work.

When rumors about the iPhone first surfaced, many people were skeptical because Apple didn't have any mobile communications patents. They thought that would force Apple to license them and prohibitively raise the cost of the iPhone. Essentially, Google settling with Apple would amount to trading off access to hardcore technology patents for access to (weak and obvious to most people) UI patents. That would be a huge win for Apple.


By Tony Swash on 3/8/2012 7:13:54 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Same thing would happen if Google entered a licensing deal with Apple for Android. That fact that Google had licensed it would indemnify any companies which used Android on their phones.


I am not sure that is true unless Google actively decides to take that position as previously, to the best of my knowledge, Google's Android licences specifically do not indemnify any Android OEM or licensee.


RE: i think i speak for a lot
By InvertMe on 3/8/12, Rating: 0
RE: i think i speak for a lot
By retrospooty on 3/8/2012 9:59:40 AM , Rating: 2
How can you be OK with Apple stolen ideas then? All Apple did was take a Palm Treo, matty it up with a full screen touchscreen like a Palm Tungsten and put in an OS with a nice UI. Its OK for Apple to totally rip off, but not others?

Look, all companies copy each other. Its normal. Ford basically invented the modern mass production automobile. Are we to ban GM, chrysler, BMW, Honda Toyota and all others because thier designs are all similar? Lets see, here, 4 wheels, and a steeing wheel, that's our idea. Of course not, and I am not saying all of Apple's copied ideas are wrong. It's OK. What isnt OK is Apple suing others for copying Apples copied tech. THAT is what pisses everyone off.


RE: i think i speak for a lot
By michael2k on 3/8/12, Rating: -1
RE: i think i speak for a lot
By Cheesew1z69 on 3/8/2012 10:37:44 AM , Rating: 4
No, they didn't invent the PDA....

quote:
The first PDA was released in 1986 by Psion, the Organizer II. Followed by Psion's Series 3, in 1991, which began to resemble the more familiar PDA style. It also had a full keyboard. [4][5]


By retrospooty on 3/8/2012 10:54:47 AM , Rating: 2
These Apple guys are a riot. They actually believe the things they say. Even thought the psion was out 7 years before the newton, and the Icon driven Psion series 3 was 2 years before the newton. And boy does the newton interface look similar. LOL.

Anyhow all companies copy. Apple just needs to stop suing about it and make products.


RE: i think i speak for a lot
By MZperX on 3/9/2012 12:21:21 PM , Rating: 2
Also, apparently the Psion Series 5 which was released in 1997 already had a touch-sensitive screen (granted it was 640x240 with 16 grayscales).

Note: I had to look this stuff up, thanks to Cheesew1z69 for pointing out the Psion devices. Fascinating stuff.

So, to the casual observer, it appears as though Apple did not create their iDevices out of thin air, but rather built and improved on decades worth of innovation by other companies... Naw, that's just crazy talk! There was no life before Apple. None!


By retrospooty on 3/8/2012 10:45:41 AM , Rating: 3
"Did you forget that Apple invented the PDA, the Newton, off which Palm based it's entire portfolio? Stylus, grid of icons, etc?"

LOL... this is why you Apple nutjob's are called "nutjobs" you think Apple invents all of their stuff and you believe everything thier PR says - and just cant see past that.

Dont get me wrong, I think Apple has some great products and they do innovate. They are a positive force in the industry and I am glad for their existence. The competition keeps thing moving and prices low... But the hypocritical lawsuits have to stop.


RE: i think i speak for a lot
By InvertMe on 3/8/2012 10:26:27 AM , Rating: 2
Don't put words in my mouth. I never said I was okay with anything about Apple. Steve Jobs was proud of the fact Apple steals it's "ideas".

Patent laws need to change a lot. Some ideas that are patented seem so general that anyone who makes anything that looks like a phone can be potentially sued.

That said Google (I'm to lazy to site my sources but you can search for it) steals lines of code directly from others. That's stuff that should be sued for. I am sure everyone does it but if you get caught you should have to pay the price.


RE: i think i speak for a lot
By masamasa on 3/8/12, Rating: 0
RE: i think i speak for a lot
By Tony Swash on 3/8/12, Rating: 0
By MechanicalTechie on 3/8/2012 7:44:09 PM , Rating: 1
And how many people followed Hilter??

When are you going to wake up? Popularity does not equal just and right!

Honestly do you have any morals or you only care about $$$

Most people at this site care about the IT industry and are not persuaded just because its popular among the techo-retards


RE: i think i speak for a lot
By hiscross on 3/8/12, Rating: 0
"Nowadays you can buy a CPU cheaper than the CPU fan." -- Unnamed AMD executive














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