Samsung ambushes iPhone 4S launch in Australia just days before Judge makes decision on Galaxy Tab 10.1 ban

Things have really heated up in Australia where recently Apple rejected Samsung’s latest offer to settle the dispute over the Galaxy Tab 10.1. This Thursday, the Australian court will make a ruling which could result in a ban of the tablet.

If that’s not enough, Samsung has set up a temporary store just two doors down from the Sydney Apple store. The iPhone 4S launches this Friday, but Samsung is giving away the Galaxy S II for $2 for the first 10 customers each day through Friday in an effort to cut into Apple’s launch. They are also promoting their new music subscription service called Music Hub.

This war shows no signs of slowing down as Samsung recently filed suit in both France and Italy in an attempt to block the iPhone 4S from launching, but for whatever reason hasn’t filed the same complaint in Australia. I would expect a filing to happen right after this latest judgement comes in.

[via smh and reuters]

Google Speaks to ITC on HTC’s Behalf

It should be considered rather common-sensical that competition in any industry is healthy for innovation and in the end customer’s best interest, but as we’ve seen before, common-sense doesn’t exactly run rampant. Google wants to make their stance clear on this very topic and to do so, they’ve spoken their case to the ITC regarding the HTC vs. Apple lawsuit. “Apple is the largest seller of mobile computing devices in the U.S.,” quoth the big G in their recent filing. “Allowing this supplier to eliminate the competition from a fast-moving maverick competitor (HTC) could drive up prices, diminish service, decrease consumers’ access to the technology and reduce innovation.” Sound familiar? Google went on to say that HTC Android devices (and any non-iOS devices by extension, I’m sure), “are helping prevent Apple’s iOS from becoming the sole viable mobile platform.” Google related the case to the other patent cases that the Apple monolith currently has going against the likes of Samsung and Motorola. We’ll know for sure on December 6th, when the ITC is scheduled to announce its decision, but any trade block raised against HTC by a negative decision would only be able to be removed by the President (which could potentially get someone some Android fan votes, just sayin’).

It’s an interesting decision by Google to make this statement so late in the game, which makes me wonder how strongly Google feels about HTC’s chances in the legal battle. Does Google have a nagging doubt as to the outcome? What do you think? Let us know in the comments!

[via businessweek]

comScore number are in: Google and Samsung continue to dominate

It’s that time of the month again when comScore releases their report on mobile subscriber market share for smartphones in the U.S. Things haven’t changed much from last months report in which Android and Samsung dominated.

For the 3-months ended August 2011, Google’s Android OS represented 43.7% of the market which is up 5.6% from May and 1.5% from last month. Apple came in second at 27.3%, up 0.7% from May and up 0.3% from last month. Rounding things out is RIM at 19.7% , Microsoft at 5.7% and Symbian at 1.8%. Microsoft has been holding its own, but RIM continues to show weakness which isn’t surprising.

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Google CEO Larry Page: “His focus on the user experience above all else has always been an inspiration to me”

Whether you login to Google+, Facebook, Twitter, or any other social network, you will find your feed is full of memories and praise for the brilliant Steve Jobs. His passing has been a shock to all of us, and he has been an inspiration to so many in the tech world. Google CEO Larry Page chimed in with the following statement:

I am very, very sad to hear the news about Steve. He was a great man with incredible achievements and amazing brilliance. He always seemed to be able to say in very few words what you actually should have been thinking before you thought it. His focus on the user experience above all else has always been an inspiration to me. He was very kind to reach out to me as I became CEO of Google and spend time offering his advice and knowledge even though he was not at all well. My thoughts and Google’s are with his family and the whole Apple family.

[via +larrypage]

Former Apple CEO Steve Jobs passed away.

It was only a 42 days ago when Steve Jobs retired as CEO of Apple due to health concerns. Today Apple announced that he passed away at the age of 56. He was probably the most brilliant CEO of this generation as he led Apple from near bankrupt company to the largest company in the United States. Apple made the following statement:

“Steve’s brilliance, passion and energy were the source of countless innovations that enrich and improve all of our lives. The world is immeasurably better because of Steve.”

I know many of our readers are not fans of Apple in general, but nobody can argue what Jobs did for Apple. After Jobs retired, Google Chairman Eric Schmidt said, “Steve Jobs is the most successful CEO in the U.S. of the last 25 years. He uniquely combined an artists touch and an engineers vision to build an extraordinary company… one of the greatest American leaders in history.”

Android might not be what it is today if it weren’t for the iPhone. Apple may have fallen behind, but just a few years ago they were a leader, and it’s to the credit of Steve Jobs. We will all miss him dearly.

[via cnbc]

Nexus Prime teaser video updated, Implies Apple is playing catch-up

Late last night we showed you the Nexus Prime teaser video, and there has already been a minor update. They added “Always ahead of the curve” towards the end of the video. This implies the curved screen, but also implies that Google and Samsung are innovating, and not playing catch-up like Apple is with the iPhone 4GS.

Stay tuned folks, I have a feeling this video is going to be updated a lot over the next few days.

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Samsung wants to ban iPhone 4S in France and Italy

By now I assume you are getting as tired as we are hearing about the ongoing legal battles between Apple and Samsung. It was only yesterday that the iPhone 4s was officially announced and today Samsung already confirms that they will file two preliminary injunctions requests in Paris and Milan.

Samsung aims to ban iPhone 4s sales in France and Italy claiming that Apple’s new device infringes upon two patents related to WCDMA standards for 3G devices. Don’t think for a minute that Samsung will stop there, the manufacturer claims that they plan to pursue similar actions in other countries, as well. Samsung released a statement saying, “Apple has continued to flagrantly violate our intellectual property rights and free ride on our technology”, and continues with, “We believe it is now necessary to take legal action to protect our innovation”. No word yet from Apple about the proposed preliminary injunctions, but you can be sure that they wont take this lightly. The battle has just begun over which countries will be allowed to sell the iPhone 4s.

Do you think Samsung has the right to ban the sale of Apple’s new device?

[via reuters]

Voice Control: Apple picks a new fight with Android

Yesterday afternoon, Apple unveiled their iPhone 4S, a rather lackluster event save for Siri; their automated virtual assistant app (An app they bought from a third party developer last April I might add). Anyways, as Apple puts it

“Siri on iPhone 4S lets you use your voice to send messages, schedule meetings, place phone calls, and more. Ask Siri to do things just by talking the way you talk. Siri understands what you say, knows what you mean, and even talks back. Siri is so easy to use and does so much, you’ll keep finding more and more ways to use it.”

While Apple marketed Siri as a new innovation (typical), Android has had much of the same functionality for more than a year now. Google just didn’t put much effort into announcing their Google Voice Actions, so a lot of Android users aren’t even aware of what their device is capable of. Apple’s event sort of hinged on the announcement of Siri. What else did they show today? Oh that’s right an app that lets you send real postcards for $3 a pop. Like I said, Siri was the star of the show.

Alright so by now you’ve likely checked out Siri and maybe, just maybe, you’re wondering if your Android does all that. As Verizon puts it, “Droid Does. ” On Android you have a couple of options for achieving Siri-like functionality, notably the aforementioned Google Voice Actions.
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Comparison: Apple iPhone 4S vs the six month old Samsung Galaxy S II

Today Apple announced the iPhone 4S instead of a highly rumored iPhone 5. Apple has tauted itself as an innovator, but it’s clear they are now playing catch up. When comparing the brand new iPhone 4S, which is the greatest iPhone ever, to the 6 month old Samsung Galaxy S II, it doesn’t appear there’s any competition. When you look at things like thickness, weight, and screen size the iPhone 4S loses hands down, but there’s plenty more.

Even if you could argue that the iPhone 4S is equal to the Galaxy S II, it would still be a disappointment. Now with the already announced Galaxy S II LTE and Galaxy S II LTE HD, along with next week’s Nexus Prime announcement, I am not sure where Apple goes from here. Luckily for Apple there’s a lot of misinformed consumers, so sales won’t suffer too much.

Full comparison after the break

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Google’s Eric Schmidt: ‘Android ecosystem is the No. 1 priority’, Motorola acquisition won’t ‘screw up’ Android

Google Chairman Eric Schmidt was interviewed by Bloomberg Television over the weekend and the hot topic was the Motorola Mobility acquisition and how it will affect Android in general.

“The Android ecosystem is the No. 1 priority, and that we won’t do anything with Motorola, or anybody else by the way, that would screw up the dynamics of that industry,” Schmidt said. “We need strong, hard competition among all the Android players. We won’t play favorites in the way people are concerned about.”

The other hot topic is patents and Schmidt said the 17,000 patents that Google is receiving from the deal will “bulk up” intellectual property and will eventually end legal battles with the likes of Apple and Microsoft.

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