Throughout all of the intense court battles that Samsung has had (are still having, and will continue to have) with Apple, it looks like Samsung’s learned a thing or two from their competitor.
In what might be the most ridiculous “patent” battle of any mobile phone manufacturer, Samsung has recently filed an objection with the Intellectual Property Office against LG to prevent them from using the phrase “Unpack event” in their marketing materials.
Apparently Samsung thinks they were the first company to ever use the word “unpack,” and they deservedly so should be the only company to use it. The Intellectual Property Office has since ruled that “unpack” is a common verb and can’t be registered as a trademark, something a fifth grader probably could have told Samsung.
In response, LG explained that they weren’t even planning on using the term in their actual media event, only in the invitations.
The two companies have clashed many times in the past, but the fact that they are clashing over something so trivial goes to show just how serious competition is in the mobile industry these days.
Apple and Samsung’s legal warzone has quieted down in the past few months, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t still a few battles going on in courts across the globe. The latest ruling comes from a court in Tokyo that has ruled Samsung infringed on Apple’s bounce-back patent. You know, that elastic effect that would happen whenever you scroll past a group of items. Apparently Apple still thinks tons of consumers bought Samsung devices strictly because of that, and the court in Tokyo agrees with them.
Samsung has generally removed the bounce-back effect in most of their newer devices, so this ruling is only going to affect a handful of older models. The court is set to release more information on the ruling later today.
Samsung scored a point today in their ongoing legal volleys with Apple as the U.S. International Trade Commission ruled Apple violated a Samsung patent. In prevailing, the ITC awarded Samsung an import and sales ban on AT&T models of the iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, iPad 3G and iPad 2 3G. You may recall a while back when ads were running showing Apple device owners using their iOS powered devices performing several functions at one time, like talking on the phone will placing an online order via the web browser. It was this ability to stream multiple data streams that triggered Samsung’s action.
Today Nokia has decided to file yet another patent suit against HTC claiming infringement with the HTC One its main target. According to Nokia, HTC hasn’t taken any action to prevent infringement and said the company “tried to shift responsibility to its suppliers.”
Nokia’s obvious main goal here is to somehow stop HTC’s sales of the One. This is still a developing story, as soon as we know more we’ll be sure to let you all know.
Considering Google has had a history of well… questionable privacy guidelines for its products and services, Congress is taking some preliminary measures to ensure the Glass headset will adhere to some privacy safeguards we’ve all come to love. As reported by the Wall Street Journal, 8 members of Congress wrote a letter directly to Larry Page insisting on a discussion of the privacy implications of not just the Glass headset, but the technology that comes along with it. The biggest concern? The letter specifically highlights “privacy implications”, while highlighting the “facial recognition technology” that could potentially provide the personal information of any one single individual the Glass camera is pointed at.
As it stands, Google has declined any comments on the letter as of now— but we suspect it won’t be long before it provides a formal response indicating the Glass headset will more than certainly be compliant with our strict privacy standards. You can check out the letter for yourself at the source link below.
source: Wall Street Journal Blog
Apple is currently preparing for its second patent infringement trial against Samsung scheduled for spring 2014, and plans to present 22 products that it believes infringe iOS user interface patents. Unsurprisingly, yesterday Apple announced that it has analyzed the Samsung Galaxy S 4 after its release and has since “concluded that it is an infringing device and accordingly intends to move for leave to add the Galaxy S 4 as an infringing product.”
In order to add the Galaxy S 4 to this list, Apple will be forced to eliminate another Samsung product from the list, as Judge Lucy Koh has ordered the company to limit the number of patent claims and infringing devices ahead of the trial.
There really isn’t any specific information pertaining to why exactly Apple believes the Galaxy S 4 infringes upon their own UI patents, but we’re sure some more information will be released as we come closer to the beginning of the trial.
Source: SB Nation
It looks like Google’s Motorola unit may be in some potentially hot water because of Motorola abusing some of its advantages and power over Apple. According to some objections made the European Commission, Motorola may be abusing some of its extensive patent portfolio, not allowing Apple to have a fair opportunity or chance to at least agree on some sort of licensing terms. Competition Commissioner Joaquin Almunia highlights:
“I think that companies should spend their time innovating and competing on the merits of the products they offer – not misusing their intellectual property rights to hold up competitors to the detriment of innovation and consumer choice.”
So in other words, the EC believes that Motorola is well… “pulling an Apple” and abusing its patent portfolio so that Apple can’t get any bigger in Europe than it is now. What’s unknown at this point is which exact patents are identified as ones where Motorola is exerting its heavy hand and power, but we’re sure we will see more details of this potentially serious case soon. Naturally this is in the early stages now, but it will be interesting to see how the EC will move forward based off of its investigation and findings.
T-Mobile launched new “no-contract” service plans last month in an effort to differentiate themselves in the U.S. market. As we noted when examining the plans, the new hardware financing options could lead consumers to pay an even greater amount to get out of the non-existent contract than what they would have paid under the old system that used early termination fees. That possibility led Washington’s Attorney General Bob Ferguson to pursue an agreement to get T-Mobile to disclose these new terms in their advertising and offer customers a chance to cancel with no penalty if they were an early adopter of the new plans.
It seriously seems like HTC can’t catch a break with the HTC One. While we’ve seen delays roll in already, the latest news isn’t any better. According to a court filing in Amsterdam, Nokia has won a preliminary injunction over HTC in its use of the same high-amplitude microphones also found in the Lumia 720. According to the filing Nokia has an exclusive 12 month contract with STMicroelectrionics to use these dual-membrane microphones as they co-developed them. Apparently the chip maker thought the exclusivity was only for 6 months rather than a full year.
But fear not as current HTC One shipments in stores will remain unaffected as the court stated that HTC was “blameless” and unaware of exclusivity between Nokia and STMicroelectronics. So far this is only affecting HTC in the Netherlands but its implication could be worse as this isn’t the first manufacturing delay the Taiwanese company has seen with its new flagship. HTC, while disappointed in the ruling, remained optimistic as they released the following statement after the decision:
It just seems like the “minor disagreement” between Samsung and Apple will never end. News has surfaced that the two manufacturing giants filed a joint case management document with the Northern District of California court which aims to regulate what is presented and argued against in the upcoming trial, such as the number of patents identified involved in select devices. For now, each company agrees that the case will be limited to 5 patents each, though Apple wants a maximum of 12 claims, while Samsung slightly disagree and wants to limit the claim to 8 instead. Additionally, the upcoming trial currently indicates there are 16 devices involved, with Samsung arguing it should be far fewer, of course.
But regardless of what disagreements Samsung and Apple will make clear in court, we’re sure that Judge Lucy Koh will be eagerly awaiting to hear them.
source: FOSS Patents