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Print 53 comment(s) - last by darkhawk1980.. on Aug 16 at 7:39 AM

Thou shalt not clone, says the legalese

It's common knowledge that when Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) briefly stepped in to save the train wreck that was Apple, Inc. (AAPL) in the mid-nineties, the pair cemented their bond with a deep cross-licensing pact which has been responsible for the relative peace between the pair in these hyper-litigious times.  During the copyright infringement trial being held at the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California between Samsung Electronics Comp., Ltd. (KSC:005930) and Apple, that licensing relationship was the topic of some questions, questions that raised interesting details.

Apple patent licensing/strategy director Boris Teksler is quoted by The Verge as testifying, "The Apple and Microsoft cross-license does cover the design patents. However, we took special prohibitions from both parties so there is what I term an 'anti-cloning' provision... so we couldn't copy each other's products. There's a clear acknowledgement that there's no copying."

The cross-licensing agreement covered both design (aesthetics) and utility (technology) patents worldwide.

As The Verge has a copy [PDF] of that 1997 arrangement it then highlighted the passage that Mr. Teksler was talking about:

clone product

In other words, Apple and Microsoft won't sue each other for individual features (e.g. swipe to unlockdisappearing scrollers, or bounce animations) or minor design details (e.g. a rectangular smartphone), but if either company feels the other is "slavishly copying" the entire comprehensive product, they could -- in theory, at least -- sue the other.

Is this interesting?  Certainly.

How does it affect the Samsung v. Apple case?  That is unclear.  Apple clearly claims that Samsung "cloned" its products.  
 
Apple iPhone
Apple claims Samsung "slavishly copied" its products. [Source: David Paul Morris/Getty Images]
 
But ultimately this testimony could be used against Apple if Samsung can establish that its smartphones/tablets are as different from the iPhone/iPad in design and user interface as Windows Phone 7 handsets and Windows tablets are from the iPhone/iPad.  Because if the level of differences is similar, and it was enough to constitute "slavishly copying"/cloning, the question would be why Apple isn't suing Microsoft as well.

Source: The Verge



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RE: cut from the same cloth
By amanojaku on 8/14/2012 5:54:16 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
Yea for being lazy and ripping off the iPhone and its technology that took billions to develop.
Billions? More like kajillions! I can make up facts, too.
quote:
C'mon Droidtards, tell me this pictures don't look alike:
They do. Most phones have a keypad that's three buttons wide, and four tall, in the following order: 1-3, 4-6, 7-9, *,0,#. For smartphones it's a rectangular screen (4:3 or 16:9) with an icon display. It's called basic functionality.
quote:
I haven't seen an Android that wasn't a wannabe iPhone. Google and co. wouldn't no innovation if it smacked them in the faces.
The iPhone's most distinguishing feature is its touchscreen display. Any smartphone without one is DOA, so, yeah, all smartphones will share this feature. However, many Android phones sport unique, if subjective, designs. Look at the Droid Razr, most of Acer's line, Sony's Experia, or Samsung's Intercept.

FYI, it's "know", not "no", you you GNU that, didn't yew?
quote:
I don't get it. if you all want an iPhone so badly, why don't you just buy one?

Hopefully all the crapdroids get sued off the market and that solves that problem for you. Then you can finally get that iPhone you've been secretly wanting all along.
I have a Motorola Razr. The V3 flip feature phone, not a smartphone. Data plans can kiss my battery cover. I'm an impartial commentator when it comes to smartphones, since I don't want any.


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