Apple and Google pair up to purchase surfeit of Kodak patents

by Colton Kaiser on
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While Apple may have not directly sued Google in relation to its many mobile patents, the two haven’t necessarily been the best of buddies in the courtroom. It seems as though that may be about to change, at least temporarily. New reports have surfaced claiming that the two will indeed join forces to purchase 1,100 of Kodak’s highly sought after imaging patents. It’s expected that both Silicon Valley companies will have to conjure up around $500 million to acquire the array of patents.

The deal should help ease tensions between the two, as both parties would have equal rights to Kodak’s protected imaging-related technology IPs. While this may sound unrealistic, this type of joint venture could prove to be most beneficial to the consumer, considering both companies would be legally allowed to include various tidbits of revolutionary technology in new products. The joint funds would also help Kodak recover from bankruptcy, effectively keeping one of the most innovative imaging and photographic equipment companies afloat during these troubling times.

It’s entirely possible that the deal may not be the final bid for either side, as Google or Apple could each make a bid of their own to buy the patents individually. However, this is one of those strange times where you actually hope the two frenemies can get along in the spirit of innovation.

Source: Bloomberg

USPTO declares Apple’s multitouch patent invalid

by Jared Peters on
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Apple has always been a little over possessive of “multitouch,” but today it appears the USPTO has put an end to that unhealthy affair. In a preliminary ruling, the multitouch patent was found invalid on all 20 points. This is unfortunate for Apple as that patent was the basis of nearly all of their multitouch patent lawsuits, including the lawsuit against Motorola that was tossed out of court earlier in June.

Although this could be overturned in higher courts, I’m hopeful that the USPTO will understand that these incredibly broad and vague patents are stifling to innovation and hopefully keep this one invalidated.

source: FOSS Patents

T-Mobile to begin selling iPhone and all other phones unsubsidized in 2013

by Alexon Enfiedjian on
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T-Mobile has always been a strong proponent for Android. It teamed up with Google to launch the very first Android phone (the HTC G1) back in 2008 and is currently the only carrier to offer the new Nexus 4 on contract. In its smartphone line-up you could always find a plethora of strong Android based contenders, with one infamous smartphone (the one that shall not be named) interestingly absent. Well, all that is set to change in 2013. In an interview today, T-Mobile’s CEO John Legere informed the press that they will begin selling Apple products in 2013, including Apple’s iPhone 5 and the rest of the gang. What’s more interesting is that T-Mobile will be selling these (and all other) devices completely unsubsidized from now on. This is a dramatic move for a carrier, and the first of its kind for one of the big four. Typically carriers sell phones at significantly reduced costs to buyers and make up the money by charging more for monthly service fees over the two-year contract. T-Mobile is bucking the system and plans to sell phones at the full retail price (phones can be as pricey as $800!) while offering a lower monthly service fee. The strange thing about this plan is that you’ll still need to sign the dotted line and commit to a two-year contract. Personally, if I were planning on buying an unsubsidized phone, I’d go with a no-contract plan like Straight Talk’s $45 unlimited plan (month to month).

Are any of you willing to sign a two year contract if your monthly rates are lower? Or would you just go with Straight Talk and other no-contract service providers?

Source: Gigaom

Small bits of HTC, Apple deal emerge in court filing

by Jeff Causey on
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Since HTC and Apple reached an agreement to cross-license patents and end their litigation, many have wondered just what kind of deal was made. One party that was particularly interested is Samsung, who argues the agreement shows injunctions are not needed as a value for patent infringements can be determined. Samsung went so far as to request one of the courts hearing one of the many Samsung v. Apple disputes to force Apple and HTC to reveal the details of the agreement. As a result of that request, which the court approved, a heavily redacted version of the agreement has surfaced in the public court filings. » Read the rest

Google’s Eric Schmidt sends message to Apple, explains the ‘adult way to run a business’

by Colton Kaiser on
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While Google’s Eric Schmidt may have once served on the board of directors at Apple, that apparently hasn’t affected his impartiality. The search giant’s executive chairman took a direct shot at Apple today in an interview with the Wall Street Journal, sending the Cupertino company a personal message, letting them know that the current way they are conducting business is laughingly based on a “teenage model of competition,” as the press would like to put it.

Schmidt also expressed his dismay with Apple’s choice to drop Google Maps in iOS 6, a choice that inevitably proved embarrassing for Tim Cook and co. » Read the rest

Only three companies profitable at selling mobile phones during third quarter

by Jeff Causey on
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In a Twitter post a couple weeks ago, Horace Dediu claims only three companies were profitable in selling mobile phones during the third quarter. According to his claim, Apple’s share of the global mobile phone profit pie fell to 60% from 66% during the second quarter. Samsung laid claim to 39% and HTC managed to grab 1% of operating profits.

At least one follower took Dediu to task by pointing out that LG was profitable by the slimmest of margins. Dediu tries to shrug it off by claiming LG “effectively” broke even. Readers may recognize Dediu as the author of the study on the Android Engagement Paradox that we reported on earlier this week.

source: Twitter

Apple Chips Away At Samsung’s Business: Stops Buying Its CPUs

by Rudy Rivapalacio on
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It’s no secret Apple has been going after Samsung, both in the mobile market and in the courts. Now it looks like Apple will take the grudge match to a new arena as it is set to shift CPU orders away from Samsung and to Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacture Company (TSMC). DigiTimes cites industry observers as saying it appears likely TSMC will produce the chips for Apple’s next iOS device in 2013. Should TSMC get the massive Apple order, it will be forced to balance its production capability between its new client and some of its other big name customers like Qualcomm, Nvidia and Altera. The combined iPhone and iPad CPU demands is estimated at roughly 200 million per year. This means TSMC will need a minimum of 200,000 12-inch wafers in order to take on the additional demand. I’m not a quotable “industry observer” but come on, who didn’t see this coming?

Source: DigiTimes

Once again, Samsung has lost yet another patent dispute against Apple; This time the blue bounce effect is the culprit

by Macky Evangelista on
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This certainly doesn’t surprise us, right? According to the courts in the Netherlands, Samsung has lost its battle against Apple regarding Apple’s patent of scrolling in the gallery (EP 2.059.868). Apparently, Samsung’s “blue bounce effect” (similar to the image above) found in their version of TouchWiz on Android 2.1, 2.2 and 2.3′s gallery must be taken out in a future update.

Apparently Samsung has 8 weeks to bring forth the update or else they’ll be forced to pay 100.00 Euros (128.93 US dollars) per day.

Samsung  just can’t catch a break with Apple, can they?

source: Sammobile

UX Corner: Apple’s Simplicity Is Not Enough – Elegant Design Requires Ingenuity

by Ed Caggiani on
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If you know anything about User Experience (UX) Design, you’ve read Steve Krug’s popular book “Don’t Make Me Think”, now an industry manual on how best to approach Web usability. The basic premise of good UX, according to Krug, is to reduce the amount of thinking a user is required to do to successfully use a Web site. This is also known as the K.I.S.S. method (“Keep It Simple, Stupid”), and is today being applied not only to Web sites, but to all software, including mobile operating systems.

Hit the break to find out why this may not be the most elegant approach to mobile OS design.

» Read the rest

Apple Getting In The Holiday Spirit By Requesting The Addition Of Additional Samsung Devices In Patent Lawsuit

by Roy Alugbue on
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‘Tis the season to be grateful for all sorts of possibilities and Apple is grateful for the ability to file yet another patent dispute against you guessed it— Samsung. According to Foss Patents, Apple would like to add additional variations of popular Samsung devices including the Jelly Bean-powered Galaxy S III, Galaxy Note II, Galaxy Tab 8.9 WiFi, Galaxy Tab 2 10.1, Rugby Pro and Galaxy S III mini, to its ever-growing list of devices accused of patent infringement. The thought is that Apple didn’t want to stand idle and be passive because well… Samsung recently went on the offensive and naturally Apple isn’t used to being pushed around and all.

Of course the recent filing was done during holiday hours, so we’ll need to wait to wait and see what the courts decide to do with this recent turn of events. Nevertheless, this should make for an exciting holiday season for Judge Lucy Koh, right?

source: Foss Patents