Print 47 comment(s) - last by Cheesew1z69.. on Nov 10 at 4:52 PM

  (Source: Warner Bros. Pictures)
Apple and Microsoft are pretty friendly with one Android phonemaker

These days whether it’s paying big licensing fees [1][2][3] to Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) or facing equally terrifying lawsuit barrages [1][2][3][4] [5][6][7][8] [9][10][11] from Apple, Inc. (AAPLlife seems pretty tough for Android OEMs, despite the operating system's sales success.

Life is pretty tough for Android phone makers, that is, except for Sony.

Japan's Sony Corp. (TYO:6758) is fortunate enough to be sitting upon a massive pile of international intellectual property.  To boot, it added over 6,000 patents to that collection when it joined with Microsoft and Apple in purchasing Nortel Networks' IP.

Sony via its wholly owned Sony-Ericsson unit, which it recently bought out, produces a number of distinctive Android smartphones including the Gingerbread-powered Xperia Play 4G (aka "The PlayStation Phone") and the "Live With Walkman" music-minded handset.

Yet Sony has had the good fortune of seeing nary a lawsuit from Apple.  Part of that could be written off to the company's relatively small share of the overall big Android pie.  It's true that Apple primarily targeted the world's top three Android smartphone makers -- Samsung Electronics Comp., Ltd.'s (KS:005930), HTC Corp. (TPE:2498), and Google Inc. (GOOG) subsidiary Motorola Mobility -- a group that Sony did not have the distinction of being part of.

But then there's the fact that Microsoft doesn't even mention Sony in its recent diagram of who it's suing and who it's cutting licensing deals with. 
Microsoft lawsuits
Look, no Sony! [Source: Microsoft]

Given that Sony's been on the market for some time now with Android product, the message seems clear -- Sony, for whatever reason, doesn't have to license from Microsoft.

Sony Xperia Play, Live With Walkman
Sony's Xperia Play 4G (left) and "Live With Walkman" (right)

It looks like Sony knows some special kung fu when it comes to smartphone IP.

Sony might not have won the Android market over quite yet with its slick designs, but with other manufacturers paying Microsoft as much as $15 USD per handset and seeing their devices banned from sales in some regions, IP-strong Sony could be poised to rise up the ranks in global sales -- assuming it can generate enough compelling product.

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Sony... meh.
By retrospooty on 11/7/2011 2:34:51 PM , Rating: 4
"Sony could be poised to rise up the ranks in global sales -- assuming it can generate enough compelling product"

Compelling product? If Sony makes it, they will somehow find a way to make it non-standard, and overcharge for it. They are as bad as Apple with that.

RE: Sony... meh.
By borismkv on 11/7/2011 3:09:07 PM , Rating: 2

RE: Sony... meh.
By EasyC on 11/8/11, Rating: 0
RE: Sony... meh.
By publicspace on 11/7/2011 8:02:43 PM , Rating: 2
*cough* Sony Camcorders, S-series MP3 Players, Sony Ericsson cell phone adapters and software, ecetera *cough*

I do not like Sony.

RE: Sony... meh.
By someguy123 on 11/8/2011 12:23:17 AM , Rating: 4
Yeah. They've got plenty of "compelling" products, but they're always some fine print attached to everything. Announce the vita at a great price point with good features, then proprietary memory cards at 30$ for 4gb.

It's like sony executives' only job is to ruin all of their products before they ship.

RE: Sony... meh.
By Tony Swash on 11/8/11, Rating: -1
RE: Sony... meh.
By wifiwolf on 11/8/2011 8:55:55 AM , Rating: 3
I stopped reading when you written "Macs are the most compatible PCs on the plane and can legally and easily run MacOSX, Windows (all variants), Linux (pretty much all variants as far as I know) and of course are also Unix boxes. Macs can run all those OS at the same time. "

Get a clue!

RE: Sony... meh.
By Tony Swash on 11/8/11, Rating: 0
RE: Sony... meh.
By yomamafor1 on 11/8/2011 11:17:24 AM , Rating: 3
Yes, because Apple restricted their OS to work legally on their computer (when it is demonstrated that average PC can run OS X without issue), so therefore Macs are better....

Sorry, let me take an Tylenol first, before I re-read your statement.

RE: Sony... meh.
By Tony Swash on 11/8/11, Rating: 0
RE: Sony... meh.
By yomamafor1 on 11/8/2011 4:38:36 PM , Rating: 2
So basically you are agreeing that everything I said is true :)

No. I agree that Mac can run almost anything, same as any other PC out there, since it is just another PC with an Apple logo on the front. The only problem is that Apple does not allow OS X to run on non-Apple machines legally , even though they can technically. To say that Mac is the most compatible machine on the market because of that is ludicrous.

I will put it another way: show me a software application you cannot run legally and easily on a Mac.

Let me rephrase that for you: show me a software application you cannot run legally and easily on an x86 PC.

RE: Sony... meh.
By DFranch on 11/8/2011 4:40:15 PM , Rating: 2
I think the point is Microsoft allows windows to be run on a mac, but Apple doesn't allow osx to be run on a pc. That's weird... if it is so superior surely they would make billions and windows would be relegated to the bargain bin.

RE: Sony... meh.
By Cheesew1z69 on 11/8/2011 4:42:48 PM , Rating: 2
The fact remains if you want to run all operating systems legally and easily on a single PC then the Mac is your machine
The fact remains they all, with the exception of Mac OS since Apple locks it to Apple hardware, run on non-mac hardware. So why pay out the nose, for Apple, when non-Apple hardware runs them just fine? Oh right, because you say so.

RE: Sony... meh.
By Cheesew1z69 on 11/8/2011 4:50:21 PM , Rating: 2
Oh, and what's this? Oops...

In yet another international patent case, Motorola Mobility won a preliminary injunction against Apple in Germany Friday, after Apple failed to appear in court to defend against charges that its products infringe on two Motorola patents related to wireless technology. The injunction prohibits Apple Inc. from selling products that offend the Motorola patents in Germany.

RE: Sony... meh.
By retrospooty on 11/8/2011 5:14:42 PM , Rating: 2
"The fact remains they all, with the exception of Mac OS since Apple locks it to Apple hardware"

Exactly... Then Swash makes it sound like an asset... Honestly, if Mac OS were available and installable on my self built PC, I would buy it right now today (and actually pay real money LOL)

The fact is Apple cant do what MS does. If they had to support 10's of thousands of different hardware and software from thousands of makers it would the most unstable OS out there. They lock out most software vendors, and lock out most hardware vendors, then don't allow their OS to be installed on REAL PC's ... This is why in spite of their "vast superiority" they can only muster 5-6% of the global market (and that is after their recent popularity surge).

RE: Sony... meh.
By retrospooty on 11/8/2011 3:18:09 PM , Rating: 2
"I regularly run Windows (XP and 7) and Ubuntu on my Mac"

Because you need to, because Mac OS isnt compatible with the rest of the earth =)

RE: Sony... meh.
By TakinYourPoints on 11/8/2011 5:21:00 PM , Rating: 2
As much as I hate to agree with Swash's extreme posts, he's right here. All crossplatform developers I know do it on Macs so they can cover Unix and OS X in the main OS and run Windows in a VM if they need to test or debug something there.

This covers friends at Google, IBM, and every single web developer I know. So yeah, for anyone serious about backend and web development his statement is pretty much true.

RE: Sony... meh.
By retrospooty on 11/9/2011 7:48:51 AM , Rating: 2
But the reason is because Apple doesnt allow OSX to install on PC's. Not the reverse. Its not that Mac is more compatible, its that Apple is less open.

RE: Sony... meh.
By retrospooty on 11/8/2011 9:01:30 AM , Rating: 2
Non-standard was meant mainly for Sony, overpriced for both.

Overpriced Apple products? Pretty much everything at this link.

By adiposity on 11/7/2011 2:32:23 PM , Rating: 5
Maybe they just don't make enough phones to bother?

By Solandri on 11/7/2011 2:38:59 PM , Rating: 5
Until I read this article, I did not know that Sony made an Android phone. Maybe Microsoft's and Apple's lawyers don't know either.

By OCedHrt on 11/7/2011 3:47:06 PM , Rating: 1
Sony's Android offerings are quite good actually..I think part of the issue is I haven't seen them in any retail stores except Sony stores.

By Strunf on 11/8/2011 7:41:44 AM , Rating: 2
In what world do you live? there have been plenty of publicity about it, in one you could see Android (the robot) being surgically grafted thumbs, this just so he could play on the Sony Ericsson Xperia. The dancing Android is also a "classic" on YouTube.
From where I stand Sony is the company that pushes android the most on its advertisements.

By Cheesew1z69 on 11/7/2011 6:35:49 PM , Rating: 4
And neither is Samsung, yet, you keep bringing it up.

By TakinYourPoints on 11/8/2011 3:31:16 AM , Rating: 1
And you keep denying it. Samsung can't even design a power adapter that isn't a blatant copy:

They can't even keep from doing it in their advertising:

It's funny how fanboys insist on defending behavior like this simply because they hate Apple. Samsung has a LONG history of doing this, Research In Motion was in court with them over the Blackjack for the same reasons before the iPhone was even introduced. Samsung is the giant corporate equivalent of Chinese knockoff makers, um, except Korean...

Have some integrity man. Props to Microsoft for going their own excellent direction with Windows Phone 7.

By TakinYourPoints on 11/8/2011 3:35:42 AM , Rating: 1
And the main point of my post still stands: Sony has a robust patent portfolio that protects them from Apple and Microsoft, plain and simple. It is something that Google screwed the pooch on and is finally coming to grips with.

By dark matter on 11/8/2011 7:31:50 AM , Rating: 2
Look, you've gone mad, you're even arguing with yourself.

Stay off the Kool aid bro, it's sending you crazy.

By Cheesew1z69 on 11/8/2011 4:44:14 PM , Rating: 1
Oh wow, a POWER adapter! Stop the fucking presses! Get real.

By TakinYourPoints on 11/8/2011 5:16:24 PM , Rating: 2
"Get real" is the best you can do when faced with facts.


By Cheesew1z69 on 11/8/2011 7:41:38 PM , Rating: 2
And you have been presented with facts, and you still deny, deny, deny! You, Tony, are a joke. Apple rips off other ideas, and doesn't care, but when someone copies, or what Apple perceives as "stealing" or "cloning" , as some of you say, is ridiculous! Apple doctored photos to make the Samsung products look more like the Apple products, and that alone, should get this whole ridiculous thing thrown out. Unfortunately, the legal system is a little bit wonked, and this is what we have. You and Tony, I seriously will never understand your logic in defending a company like this, when they are trying to stifle innovation with these ridiculous lawsuits. Unless you somehow are invested financially tied, it makes no sense.

By TakinYourPoints on 11/9/2011 8:50:59 PM , Rating: 2
Haha, cry some more

By Cheesew1z69 on 11/10/2011 4:47:00 PM , Rating: 2
Cry? I am not crying over your idiocy. Laughing is more like it. You got called out, and I am crying. Please seek help, you and Tony both need some serious mental counseling and it's obvious.

By Cheesew1z69 on 11/10/2011 4:52:04 PM , Rating: 2
And the fact that you think it's OK that Apple doctored photos, claiming that they looked exactly like Apple products, is mind blowing. I believe what Apple did, is called Perjury. Which is against the LAW in most countries.

Music sooths the savage beast
By Misterbear on 11/7/2011 8:58:45 PM , Rating: 5
Apple has iTunes. Microsoft has Zune. Sony has music; lots and lots of music. This should not be a mystery as to why Sony has escaped the wrath of litigation.

RE: Music sooths the savage beast
By TSS on 11/8/2011 8:47:25 AM , Rating: 2
Actually Sony is a good example then of where this whole patent mess will end up once the patent wars are over.

It's back to the MAD doctrine for companies... only then with patents. Just a few, giant corperations that can each sue eachother into oblivion.

*One year later*
By quiksilvr on 11/7/2011 2:37:59 PM , Rating: 2
After Sony's release of the XPeria Quad and 2 million units sold, Apple and Microsoft open patent disputes.

That's because
By Labotomizer on 11/7/2011 4:33:20 PM , Rating: 2
Anyone who went into the Nortel patent purchase was covered under those licensing deals. Microsoft is trying to license these things to prevent innovation from being stifled. It's why they got a large group together to purchase Nortel's IP, they didn't want any single company having full control over that. They also tried to get Google to join in on the deal so that Google would also be covered but Google decided against it.

You sort of left that whole part out. Well, that and Sony is a bit player in Android currently.

By Glibous on 11/7/2011 5:59:37 PM , Rating: 2
Sony and Microsoft compete in many similar markets (Console is the primary one on my mind). It's possible that there may have been licence agreements in that space and Microsoft doesn't want to open a can of worms by "attacking" Sony with patent infringements.

Since Sony's smartphones aren't rectangular enough that leaves Apple out :)

2 old farts and their kid
By SGK128 on 11/8/2011 2:26:07 AM , Rating: 2
Sony + Ericsson + Sony Ericsson = Massive

Sony, despite its recent years of downfall, it is still a very huge and old electronics company. It's patent portfolio is and should be huge. Ericsson itself is a huge telecom sector player, its patent portfolio should be pretty big as well. The 2 parents plus the patents Sony Ericsson itself owns should be a pretty big safety net for the phone maker. I dont think any other Android maker has the advantage of Sony Ericsson. I am sure Sony took care of licensing Ericsson's portfolio when they bought SE.

By Maximalist on 11/8/2011 11:46:48 PM , Rating: 2
It is now several times each week that Jason Mick brainwashes readers at DT with his free-for-all propaganda drivel.

How can an immature industry observer claim that Android device manufacturers are having it really tough now because of the licensing fees? Did the OEMs come out crying for licensors ripping them off? Does the author even know how much the licensing fees are and the economics of smart phone business? One would think that an industry analyst, which Jason Mick attempts to appear since he obviously goes beyond merely reporting by offering his opinion, would base his analysis on facts. If there are no facts, but only suppositions, then the writeup is nothing more than a speculation. Add fanboi agenda on top, and you have Jason Mick's drivel.

This personal pro-Android war Jason Mick is waging on DT pages is plain propaganda crap and utter disinformation aimed at swaying public opinions. Manipulative retards with access to mass media like this is all we need to persuade the sheep, who take DT seriously, to live in the fantasy free-for-all world where big bad wolves such as Microsoft threaten the ultimate bliss. What a joke.

By name99 on 11/7/11, Rating: -1
RE: Appearance
By Malhavoc on 11/7/2011 4:08:44 PM , Rating: 1
Maybe if the Iphone didn't look so generic ...

RE: Appearance
By senecarr on 11/7/2011 4:11:45 PM , Rating: 2
And that explains the lawsuit against HTC how?

RE: Appearance
By Cheesew1z69 on 11/7/2011 6:38:32 PM , Rating: 2
And since Samsung didn't/doesn't make a clone , your point is null and invalid. You seem strangely unwilling to accept this point, in spite of the evidence.

RE: Appearance
By MechanicalTechie on 11/7/2011 7:23:28 PM , Rating: 1
Pffff Apple fan boys.. should be a law against them!

RE: Appearance
By dark matter on 11/8/2011 7:34:56 AM , Rating: 1
You left your toys on the motorway, go play there.

"The Space Elevator will be built about 50 years after everyone stops laughing" -- Sir Arthur C. Clarke

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