Apple has won a victory it may eventually regret. On Friday (Aug. 24), a California jury awarded Apple a tad over $1 billion in its patent infringement lawsuit against Samsung Electronics, which a jury found liable of "willful infringement" of Apple’s wireless patents.
It may indeed be the case that Apple will go after many Google Android devices, using this verdict as a club to bludgeon other rivals into either withdrawing smartphones and tablets already in the market or agreeing to pay hefty royalties. Rivals could also adopt the Windows mobile operating system, as Microsoft marketing executive Bill Cox tweeted after the Apple-Samsung verdict was announced.
It's more likely that Google will rework its Android operating system to avoid any of the patents involved in the Apple-Samsung tussle.
There are other reasons why Apple should hold off on uncorking the champagne. It has won this skirmish in the patent wars, but there are many more battles ahead. It is itself locked in other patent disputes, including a separate case with Google, which alleges Apple violated patents previously owned by Motorola Mobility. The unit is now part of Google. That case will take months if not years to play out.
"Apple could also adopt the Windows mobile operating system, as Microsoft marketing executive Bill Cox tweeted after the Apple-Samsung verdict was announced."
Shouldn't it be SAMSUNG that might adopt Windows mobile operating system and NOT Apple?
KVRR, Thanks for catching that error. It's not Apple or Samsung that "could adopt Microsoft's" Windows operating system but rivals who currently use Google Android, including HTC. Of course, Samsung could too but I believe the company either already has Windows OS devices or is getting ready to launch them.
It will be interesting to see what effect the verdict has on Apple and Samsung sales. IMO, a "cool" company doesn't need to sue anyone. After all, who cares if someone copies last year's model when this year's model will make it obsolete? That, of course, assumes that Apple has a bunch of "cool" ideas in the pipeline that will make the current models obsolete. IMO the most important Apple advance lately has been the "retina display" made by... Samsung and LG, both Android phone makers.
Samsung is well known for its TVs and leads Apple world-wide in smart phone shipments. This verdict probably increases Samsung name recognition, which could end up being a good thing provided that Apple is not able get injunctions on all Samsung phones.
A great perspective as usual Bolaji. I'm not sure that I fully agree that this might come back to bit Apple (no pun intended). But I do agree that some consumers have come to view Apple as a bully for this case and other issues. However, members of the Apple cult are still waving the flag. Apple's diehard fanbase will continue to sustain it, even if others have changed their opinion of the company.
the current IP ponzi scheme has many proponents, like the jury foreman and Rick. that doesn't mean it's not blatantly immoral and due for revolution-level reform. patents are supposed to promote progress: that means putting better products in consumer hands.
it's merely insulting to claim that Apple has been deprived of profits they deserve.
Reguardless of being right, Apple has now brought attention to itself as trying to enforce a smart phone monopoly. There are all kinds of lawyers just salivating over the chance to bring charges against Apple for preditory business practices.
In the end, I think Apple will have wished that they lost this one. They are already losing the free market war and bringing attention to their destruction of US centric jobs.
Once you get on top, everyone wants to knock you off. Apple is now public enemy No. 1.
Just my opinion.
"...and bringing attention to their destruction of US centric jobs."
Erebus, I have pondered this plenty and I've come to the conclusion that China being what it is, it was innevitable that low-end manufacturing jobs would go over there. And that the ~42000 jobs that Apple (and/or others who use the same business model) has created over here to be a sign of success in these changing times.
Perhaps, but every company makes decisions on where they do parts of their work. There is no doubt in the fact that Apple products, regardless where they are made, has cost many US jobs. All you have to do is look at their profit margins and you can see that they had choices, they chose greed.
Just my opinion.
Good article, (because?) I concur.
I'd like to know this: can anyone easily tell apart any number of cell phones that aren't strictly "smart phones"? Before smart phones became the must-have fashion statement, didn't we see all manner of silver or black, flip or no-flip phones around? That only the most diehard fanatic could tell apart from, say, six feet away?
Yet I don't remember any lawsuits that caused anywhere close to the media feeding frenzy this one has created.
There's a point at which form has to follow function. Imagine if these cell phone companies had previously gone ballistic when another company "copied" the button shape or the layout of the keypad.
As 2G cell phones evolved into smart phones, I find it hard to believe that the smart phone solutions wouldn't follow the same design path as every other innovation has done for all time. Pretty much everyone converges on the new form. It has always been thus. Just because the "Apple" name is involved now, it turns into some sort of religious war. Come now.
On the contrary Bert, before smartphones, we saw all manner of cell phones in a huge variety of very creative sizes, styles, colors and features. Some flipped open vertically, some flipped open horizontally, some swiveled open and some didn't open at all. Screen sizes varied widely, keypads and/or keyboards too, some phones had interior & exterior screens, and every teenager had to express themselves with their choice of a colorful, sometimes bejeweled and often artistic "skin" for their phone.
Back then, a cell phone truly was a fashion statement and almost no two looked alike.
But something changed in the smartphone era, and a big part of that "something" is that every phone must be a boring rectangle and come in either black or white.
In many ways, I miss those old days when phones were colorful and crazy and every manufacturer had different designs and different ideas about how the thing should look and work.
I'd say that the variation in smart phones is no better or worse than the flips. I know that motorola had jillions of design patents in the early microtac days. But eventually, they all pretty much were aggregating to a similar size and formfactor. If we compare a samsung epic 4g to an iphone, they are really quite different. I"m not sure why that one and other keyboard slider phones are specifically named. It is certainly true that one flip phone looked like another and from five feet, you had zero chance of differentiating a sanyo from a samsung from a motorola. They generally all looked the same with rounded edges. The phones came in different colors but then again, the backs of the iphone looks quite different from most Android phones. I do look forward to what Apple will do next. Will their iphone 5 look like an Samsung S3? I know that all of the current iphone owners that I know hope so!
I would agree that there were many different styles, however it seemed like every major company offered a phone of each type. I could hardly tell my LG flip phone apart from my wife's Samsung, both silver, both had almost identical keypads, etc.
The Apple iPhone5 is going to be the first Apple smartphone with a 16:9 display, and yet Samsung has been selling that aspect ratio for some time now. So are we going to see a big rukus about that in the near future? I would think everyone would have migrated to 16:9 by now, simply because that has become the new normal, ever since the first digital TVs. And yet, how does that not constitute "trade dress"?
i am one of those disappointed at the verdict. i do believe one company should not have monopoly over rectangles with rounded corners and a bezel (which i believe is prior art in itself). All the utility patents are basically 'user interface' patents and it's the implementation of those that should have been granted patents, not the feature itself.
i do believe this verdict will cost the consumer, and that too for patents that are not valid in my opinion.
Apple is presenting the image of "The Ugly American" to the world. It is not insignificant that the trial was in the backyard of Apple headquarters and the jurors were all from Silicon Valley where foreign competition means job threat. Apple did not clean up in any of the other similar court cases in the world where there was far less conflict of interest. To many in the rest of the world, the trial has all the appearance of an American lynch mob.
Let's face it, Apple did not invent the smartphone. Apple stole a lot more from Xerox Park and RIM's Blackberry than Android stole from Apple. There's few that can challenge the legal might of the world's wealthiest American corporation.
I know this may be a bit off topic, but what is the meaning of the famous Apple logo - the apple with the bite out of it?
The two famous myths that have an apple with a byte from it are Eve and the serpent and Snow White and the witch.
No doubt Apple products are tempting. Who is the snake or witch supposed to be?
But the patent awards have nothing to do with the OS from what is written in this rag.
So the whole MS upside is BS.
If I'm wrong spell out the patent infringments that have something to do with the OS.