Alright, raise your hand if you were surprised when Apple sued Motorola for their XOOM tablet. No one? You know why no one is surprised? This is becoming a common Apple product. Apple doesn’t seem content with suing Samsung, their (more than likely) biggest tablet competitor. Now that they’ve won that battle, they’ve moved onto Motorola for their XOOM. It’s like I called Apple’s success against Samsung being used as a precedent in other cases. Oh wait, I did. We just reported that Apple has filed a complaint against Motorola in Europe for its XOOM tablet. You know what this means? Apple is officially a patent troll.
Earlier today we reported that Apple got a preliminary injunction against Samsung from selling the Galaxy Tab 10.1 across Europe. Well prior to or simultaneously with the motion for this injunction, Apple filed a complaint with the same court over the design of the Motorola XOOM.
There is a passage within the Samsung complaint that mentions Motorola and a local German company called JAY-tech. The passage says that Apple filed a complaint with Motorola, but doesn’t state whether they requested a preliminary injunction or not. It is possible that they asked for a permanent injunction instead.
The US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) recently approved 21 patents that were submitted by Apple. The patents mostly cover software architecture. Some of the more interesting patents are an integrated touchscreen, a graphical user interface for a voicemail management utility, and a modular system for building desktop tower computers.
The integrated touchscreen patent is the merging of touch-sensing components and a display panel into a single unit. This would make the display thinner and brighter.
Google’s John Lagerling, Director of Android Global Partnerships, spoke at the Pacific Crest investment conference proclaiming that they have “very strong paths that we can take to protect the values of Android” and continued with a declaration for their want to protect innovation while working with its partners to protect the values of Android and fend off patent lawsuits. Patents, he said, should enable innovation whereas they are currently being used to stifle innovation, something that’s not “good for consumers”.
His words come on the heels of an attack last week on Apple and Microsoft for a partnership that won Nortel’s mobile patent portfolio, not to mention the hot-button topic of Google’s ongoing court battles with Oracle over Android. On the specifics of their paths of action he remained somewhat cryptic, but it is clear that Google is ready to continue the fight.
Read Mr. Lagerling’s statement:
HTC has agreed to acquire Dashwire, a Seattle-based cloud services company, for $18.5 million via its HTC America Holding division. Dashwire offers a range of cloud services for carriers, handset vendors, and retailers. They offer Dashworks which is a cross-platform cloud sync solution that is available on Android, Symbian, BlackBerry, and Windows Mobile.
“Cloud services are key to delivering the promise of connected services to our customers,” HTC’s president of engineering and operations, Fred Liu, said in a statement. ”People want access to all of their important content wherever they are on any device. The addition of Dashwire’s cutting-edge sync services and deep mobile cloud experience strengthens our ability to deliver these services.”
This aquisition might bolster cloud services for HTC, but there could be another reason that HTC sets their eyes on Dashwire, and that is patents. Back in April Dashwire gained some patents for defensive purposes. It used to be that companies bought other companies for growth, but companies like Apple and Microsoft have changed the climate with patent trolling.
In other news, HTC reported record sales for the fourth consecutive month. HTC had NT$45.11 billion ($1.56 billion) for July which is a record month. Although it is a record, their momentum has slowed, but on the flip side they are going to launch six to eight phones this quarter, so expect continued record sales.
We all know Android is growing; there’s no denying the numbers. Just like there’s no denying that Apple has a large share, RIM is dying, and Windows Phone is off somewhere by the fence huffing spraypaint. In the latest mobile subscriber number results from comScore, Android has now gobbled up a whopping 40 percent of the market share as of June, up 5.4% from March. This is leaving Apple farther and farther behind, which is at 26.6%, and Microsoft, RIM and Symbian all lost share.
Check out the results below, and let us know your thoughts in the comments.
|Top Smartphone Platforms
3 Month Avg. Ending Jun. 2011 vs. 3 Month Avg. Ending Mar. 2011
Total U.S. Smartphone Subscribers Ages 13+
Source: comScore MobiLens
|Share (%) of Smartphone Subscribers|
|Total Smartphone Subscribers||100.0%||100.0%||N/A|
Earlier today we detailed the first round of the trash talking of the ongoing patent battles between Google and Android manufacturers vs Apple, Microsoft, and Oracle. It all started with a blog post from David Drummond, Senior Vice President and Chief Legal Officer for Google. He basically said that Microsoft and Google overpaid for the Novell and Nortel patents to keep them away from Google. Later, Brad Smith (general counsel for Microsoft) and Frank X Shaw (lead corporate communications for Microsoft) chimed in via Twitter stating that Microsoft offered Google the chance to partner with them on the Novell purchase, but they turned them down.
Surprise surprise, David Drummond has chimed in again updating his original blog post. He basically said that Microsoft is trying to divert attention by pushing a false “gotcha!” Google did indeed turn down Microsoft’s offer because Microsoft’s plan was to keep from Google and Android manufacturers any patents that might be used to defend themselves. Drummond said, “Making sure that we would be unable to assert these patents to defend Android — and having us pay for the privilege — must have seemed like an ingenious strategy to them. We didn’t fall for it.”
It’s no surprise that Apple has changed the game from the beginning and brought us true innovation since the launch of the original iPhone. For anyone to deny that the Apple iPhone is anything less than “good” is seriously in denial. The success and popularity of the device along with the iPad was simply unprecedented. That being said, founder of Digital Chocolate, Trip Hawkins, compares Apple to the Roman Empire in that as successful and dominant as it was, it was still bound to fall. As far as I can tell, however, I don’t see any industry proof or evidence as to why there would be a decline in the works for Apple. Hawkins seems to draw his conclusions simply on the analogy alone as he states the following:
Unless you have been living under a rock, you are fully aware of the patent battles going on between Google and Android manufacturers vs Microsoft, Apple, and Oracle.
Yesterday afternoon, David Drummund, Senior Vice President and Chief Legal Officer decided to go on a little rant with a posting on the official Google Blog.
“Android’s success has yielded something else: a hostile, organized campaign against Android by Microsoft, Oracle, Apple and other companies, waged through bogus patents.”
In an ongoing feud with the heat (or immaturity) of a sibling rivalry, Samsung has decided to postpone the August 11th launch event for the Galaxy Tab 10.1. This appears to be more of a game of tug of war than anything else. First Apple prevented Samsung from selling the 10.1 in Australia. Samsung responded saying they’ll sell it anyway because it’s slightly different. Now it goes back to Apple. I’m guessing the next move will be Samsung forcing some sort of lawsuit that requires iPad users to wear ugly purple shorts in public. Seriously, my younger brothers and I fight less than this.