In a result that surprises many, Apple was granted patent number 7657849. You probably know this patent as “slide to unlock.” Before you start screaming and demanding to the heads of those responsible, realize that there is still a decent chance that this will be invalidated. It took 6 years for Apple to finally convince the US that they deserved this patent, and the US seems to be the only ones buying this. A Dutch Judge has already denied Apple the patent based on the fact that Apple was not the first to use a “slide to unlock” gesture. Regardless of what happens, you can be sure that Apple’s leeches lawyers are already getting their suitcases and papers ready. The full patent can be found after the break.
Reports are saying that Samsung has sold more than 20 million smartphones in Q3 of this year, nudging Apple out of the top spot for the first time since the original iPhone was released. Tuesday, Apple announced that September quarter sales of the iPhone peaked at 17.1 million, 3 million short of analyst expectations. According to The Wall Street Journal’s anonymous source, Sammy banged out 20 million units in one quarter, just under 3 million more than Apple had reported.
Nokia shipped 16.8 million smartphones in the same quarter, down 38% from 27.1 million from a year earlier. Although Samsung has not officially revealed Q3 shipment figures, reports are saying that they have taken the title of #1 smartphone vendor by volume in the third quarter of 2011. We may never see an official Q3 report from Samsung as they have stopped reporting sales figures unless a milestone in achieved. With the upcoming release of the Galaxy Nexus, we only expect these figures to increase.
News came out yesterday that Samsung might have designed the Galaxy Nexus in such a way that it would avoid patent infringements against Apple. Samsung Mobile president Shin Jong-kyun said the company “will avoid everything we can” and that they “take patents very seriously,” but there was no guarantee that the Galaxy Nexus wouldn’t be subject to any litigation. He went on to say “We will see if (the new phone) will be 100 percent free.”
Those comments seem to vague to me to take the impression that they definitely worked hard in avoiding patents, and later Samsung’s head of mobile global product strategy, Won-Pyo Hong, denied it. Hong said, “That wasn’t really part of our discussions when designing the device.” He went on to say, “I don’t know where the rumor came from.” He apparently was not aware of the early comments by Shin Jong-kyun.
Whatever Samsung did with the Galaxy Nexus, I highly doubt the bitter war between Samsung and Apple will end now, so expect suits involving the device.
Introducing Iris; your new intelligent Android assistant. Talk to Iris about anything and listen to its wisdom.
Android developers sure do know how to mock Apple, as clearly evidenced by this new addition from developer, Dexetra, to the android market. You may be familiar with Dexetra already for their former claim to fame, the “Friday” app. Their latest, Iris, is a direct play on Apple’s Siri. In fact, it’s an acronym for Intelligent Rival Imitation of Siri. Iris talks to you in a conversational manner about whatever topic you desire; Philosophy, Culture, History, Science to general conversation. I’ve tried it myself* and it works pretty decent, and it even has a bit of personality. You may get a few oddball responses but understand the app is still alpha. The real kicker of this story is that, Siri, the main attraction of Apple’s iPhone 4S announcement, was imitated on Android with a mere 8 hours of work, according to the developers. Looks to me like some Siri-ous alternatives are taking shape… Ok, maybe that was lame, but really there are a lot of alternatives to Siri on Android right now. We wrote a comparison of Siri and Android’s built in speech controls earlier in the month while at the same time offering up some examples of alternative apps; apps such as Vlingo, Voice Actions, and Eva. By the way if you are already using Androids built in voice search tool, here’s a quick tip. Long pressing the search key can automatically launch the voice controls. Nifty right?
Update: Leave a comment with something funny she said :D
Android Market Link
Screen shots from within the app after the break.
The Android 4.0 presentation probably got the most attention of any Android release presentation so far. Android has grown to be more and more popular over this past year and the Android lovin’ is at an all time. A lot of the time we get so caught up in the newness that we forget what is truly innovative and what should have been here a long time ago. Apple presentations, for example, are famous for having two sides. There’s always the side that has a religious experience with everything that’s announced, and another that likes to point out that while the newer things are nice, they shouldn’t be considered “new.” After talking with some of my friends about the ICS presentation, I’ve realized that even Android is starting to develop that dual nature. So without further ado, I’ll present the things that you should be genuinely happy that Android now does while also declaring the improvements that it should have done a while ago. Ain’t nobody done tell me I be too biased.
Samsung won a minor victory yesterday when a California judge threw out some of Apple’s claims against it. Samsung asked U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh to throw out several of Apple’s anti trust complaints to which the Judge Koh was apparently happy to oblige to. However, she has still not come to a ruling about Apple’s request to block Samsung phones in the US. Another important note is that Apple can amend the claims slightly and bring them back to court if they so choose.
Will this ever end?
The folks over at SquareTrade did a drop test to see which smartphone is more durable: The Samsung Galaxy S II or the Apple iPhone 4S. They have 3 catagories which include a drop from waist high, shoulder high, and face down. Ironically both phones seemed to perform better from shoulder height as opposed to waist high.
The real story is the face down test as there is a clear hands-down winner. I am not sure if it’s enough information to sway Apple or Android fans on deciding their next purchase, but if you are someone who is more clumsy, you might have to consider it.
I don’t think this is a shocker to anyone. After last week’s setback in which Apple was granted an injunction on the Galaxy Tab 10.1, Samsung just filed for a preliminary injunction on the Apple iPhone 4S in Australia and Japan. In Japan, they are also asking for an immediate ban on iPad 2 and iPhone 4 sales.
Samsung already filed preliminary injunctions on the iPhone 4S in France and Italy about 2 weeks ago, and they are appealing the decision in Australia.
Samsung says Apple Inc. continues to violate its patent rights and “free ride on our technology.”
In a recent interview with Taiwan’s Chinese-language United Daily News, Acer Inc. founder Stan Shih states that the Android operating system is destined to overcome Apple’s iOS through its combined efforts of Wintel (Windows+Intel) and Google innovations. Shih goes on to say that the alliance between Intel and Google is a match that proves to be good news for “Android leaguers” as the two companies will innovate and provide better solutions for optimizing Android’s speed and performance. Furthermore, he predicts the Android-powered, Atom processor-built portable communication devices will overtake Apple in PC development.
Regarding the post-PC era, Shih said that we shouldn’t expect a true end to that part of the industry but rather we will see it evolve into more diverse forms such as tablets and smartphones. Manufacturers of display panels and IC chipsets, he says, will be instrumental with their production capabilities and capacity for the global supply chain of PCs, whose production will also evolve to envelop the growing PCD consumer demand.
If you’ve been following any of the on-going twenty or more patent lawsuits between Samsung and Apple, you may be well aware of the Dutch ruling back in August that found the Galaxy S, S II and Ace model smartphones to be in breach of an Apple patent relating to a method of scrolling through pictures. Luckily for Samsung, this ruling also exonerated the company of infringement on nine other patents filed as part of the same suit by Apple in an effort to stop the sale of their competitor’s devices across Europe.
Based on those findings, the Dutch court imposed a sales injuction on the incriminated models with a grace period for Samsung to address the lone infringement by this Friday, October 14th. Now, just days before the end of that period, a Samsung spokesman has relayed a message confirming that upgrades have been made that will enable them to avoid the ban of sales in many European countries:
“We’ve fixed the technological problem and upgraded products to address the issue. They will be shortly available for sale,” ~ James Chung (Samsung spokesman)
There’s no word yet on launch dates for the devices, but at least a launch date does exist somewhere on the horizon. This is in direct contrast to their Galaxy Tab 10.1 which presently awaits a similarly contemptuous sales ban request by Apple in Australia, an important ruling that should come down later today.