Google seeks to beef up patent portfolio, shield from Apple lawsuits by acquiring InterDigital

by Dustin Karnes on
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We all know that Apple is out for blood when it comes to their patent war. In recent months, we’ve seen both Samsung and HTC attacked by Apple’s patent team, and they’re crying “infringement” like there’s no tomorrow; there have been almost 50 different Android related lawsuits since last year. Granted, a judge found HTC to be in violation of 2 Apple patents, but with infringement claims as broad as what Apple is whipping around, it’s entirely possible that my grandmother may even be at risk of hearing from Apple’s lawyers. Although Eric Schmidt is coming back and saying that, not only is Apple simply responding to a lack of innovation with legal slap-arounds, but that he’s not worried about the lawsuits, we all know that these types of legal matters can bring a company to its knees.

» Read the rest

Apple’s lawsuit against Google / HTC broken down

by Dustin Karnes on
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Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that Apple has decided that, in order to truly get ahead in the mobile space, lawsuits are the new black. We’ve weighed in with our opinion on the lawsuits. However, we’ve been getting the same question over and over: why is Apple suing Google / HTC? We’ve got the lowdown, so if you’re interested in knowing exactly what patents are in violation, be sure to hit the break and get your lawsuit groove on. Granted, these aren’t all of the infringement accusation, but they’ll give you a good idea. Don’t forget to leave us your thoughts in the comments!

» Read the rest

Android Set to Overtake Apple in the Tablet War, Grows Nearly 30% in One Year

by Ryan Brooks on
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In a move that has certainly caught this writer off-guard, Strategy Analytics’ latest report tells of Android’s rise to 30% share in the tablet market last quarter, up from just 2.9% last year. Microsoft, even though they haven’t released their tablet-optimized Windows 8 yet, still manages to outsell RIM’s Playbook 4.6% to 3.3%. Apple still stands at a dominating 61.3%, though this is down from last year’s 94%.

Last week we predicted that Android would turn the tide in this tablet war, as it has with smartphones, and Google is definitely on track to make this a reality. Truth be told, we don’t ever want to see one OS completely overtake another. Competition is good for innovation, and innovation is good for consumers.

[via bgr]

Another Rant: Apple Sues HTC, Google Backs HTC, and Why All of These Lawsuits are Bad for Consumers

by Andrew Greenfield on
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Once again Apple has taken the low road and decided to sue another competitor with as many lawsuits as it can come up with in hopes one of them works. As a Macbook Pro lover and someone who has used various iOS devices almost as much as Android, it’s no secret that I do have a small love for Apple deep down inside. Yeah, I prefer Android, but I realize how important iOS is in the grand scheme of things and why so many people love it (it IS a great OS). However, Apple’s recent lawsuit against HTC is starting to make me seriously dislike what the company is becoming. Buckle down if you proceed. This Apple rant is about to get ugly. Very ugly. » Read the rest

Eric Schmidt: “They are not responding with innovation, they’re responding with lawsuits.”

by Robert Nazarian on
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Google Executive Chairman , Eric Schmidt, made some interesting comments about the recent Android-related lawsuits at Google’s Mobile Revolution conference in Tokyo.

“The big news in the past year has been the explosion of Google Android handsets and this means our competitors are responding. Because they are not responding with innovation, they’re responding with lawsuits. We have not done anything wrong and these lawsuits are just inspired by our success.”

Schmidt is referring to the lawsuits spearheaded by Apple and Microsoft against Android manufacturers which is at 48 and counting. Last week Google CEO Larry Page, made some comments regarding the matter, during Google’s Q2 2011 conference call.

The latest news came over the weekend when an ITC judge found HTC infringed 2 of 10 Apple patents. Schmidt reiterated that Google would support HTC in its fight against Apple, and seemed confident that a win was imminent, but would not comment further.

Unfortunately there is no end in sight for these tactics, but when it does, the result can only be shiny new toys for the lawyers and less innovation.

[via thenextweb]

Samsung Smart Cover knock-offs come and go faster than the speed of light

by Robert Nazarian on
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Considering the legal battles between Samsung and Apple, it was surprising to see Samsung selling an exact copy of Apple’s Smart Cover dubbed the Smart Case. It was made by Korean company, Anymode, which has a “strong affiliation” with Samsung, and was supposedly available in Samsung shops in Korea and on the Anymode website.

Samsung has already pulled the product and made the following statement:

As a general practice, Samsung Electronics reviews and approves all accessories produced by partners before they are given the “Designed for Samsung Mobile” mark.

In this case, approval was not given to Anymode for the accessory to feature this official designation.  We are working with Anymode to address this oversight and the product has already been removed from the Anymode sales website.  The product has not been sold.

I doubt Samsung should continue their “strong affilation” with Anymode moving forward. Something tells me that this is definitely something Anymode “cooked up.” Lets face it, Samsung would not be that stupid to release the product, only to then realize that it is a complete knock off, and pull it.

[via samsung]

Android top of Mobile OS usage for 7th straight month

by Dustin Karnes on
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According to the latest mobile mix report from Millenial, Android is *still* on top of mobile OS usage – for the 7th straight month in a row. That’s right, folks… 2011 has been the year for Android, and it’s showing no signs of letting up. With a whopping 54% of the mobile OS share, that’s more than enough to say it’s #1, especially with the next contender, iOS, coming in at less than half that – 26%.

Granted, the iPhone is still the top mobile device on the market, but hey – we’ll take what we can. The totals for OS usage were:

  1. Android – 54%
  2. iOS – 26%
  3. RIM – 15%
  4. Symbian – 3%
  5. Windows – 2%

Be sure to hit the break for a full rundown of Millenials findings, and let us know what you think in the comments!

[via bgr]

ITC Judge finds HTC infringed 2 Apple patents; Should we panic?

by Robert Nazarian on
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There is a big time cloud of fear hovering in Android world tonight as administrative law judge (ALJ) Carl Charneski determined that HTC infringed two Apple patents. This means that it is possible that Apple could put an import ban on some of HTC’s devices or enter into a licensing deal. Although the latter is better for Android, it would still not be a good situation because it would cause problems for other OEMs like Motorola and Samsung, not to mention the high costs.

Should we panic just yet? Today’s decision is an “initial determination” which will eventually be reviewed by a six-member Commission, the highest decision-making body by the International Trade Commission (ITC). This initial determination was originally scheduled for August 5th, but for whatever reason they moved it up. The target date for the final decision is scheduled for December 6, 2011 which could also be moved up.

» Read the rest

IDC reports 1st Qtr 2011 tablet market share, Lookout Apple: Android is catching up quickly

by Robert Nazarian on
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Back in March, I declared that Android would eventually dominate the tablet war, and most of the media continues to disagree with me. International Data Corporation (IDC) just released their figures for tablet market share for the 1st quarter 2011, and there is no question that the iPad continues to dominate, but IDC is reporting that Android now has a 34% market share.

Looking back at the end of the 3rd quarter 2010, the iPad had a 93% market share and Android was non existent. The Samsung Galaxy Tab was the only mainstream Android tablet for the 4th quarter 2010, and it was able to capture 17% of the market share for that period. Lets not forget that the Tab was never really meant to go after the iPad. The XOOM was the first major Android tablet (featuring Honeycomb) released, but it was released 2/3′s into the 1st quarter, and many analysts consider the XOOM a flop. The fact that Android was able to capture a 34% market share through the 1st quarter has to be concerning to Apple.

» Read the rest

48 Android-related lawsuits and counting, Apple files second patent-infringement complaint against HTC

by Robert Nazarian on
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Yesterday, I reported about Apple’s complaint with GetJar, and it turned it into a rant about how ridiculous these lawsuits are. This time I promise to just report the news and not rant about it, but if you missed it, you can read it here.

Today is another day and it means another complaint or lawsuit. Apple may not be winning in market share, but they are no doubt winning in the complaint filings. They have just filed a second patent-infringement complaint against HTC at the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC). Their goal is to block imports of “personal electronic devices” by HTC.

If anyone is keeping tabs, this appears to be the 48th Android-related lawsuit. This complaint involves 5 patents, three of which are being used against Samsung. Apple first went after HTC back in March 2010, which involved 10 patents. That case is still going on, and it appears that Apple feels its chances are not so good. Back in April, the ITC staff expressed its opinion that HTC did not infringe upon any valid Apple patents. The final determination is scheduled for August 5th, which will most likely be the same result.

In addition to the the ITC complaints, Apple filed two lawsuits against HTC last year in Delaware. The first is stayed because it mirrors the allegations of the first ITC complaint. The second one is progressing slowly.

HTC has been considered the most vulnerable Android manufacturer since they own the fewest patents. This is most likely the reason they agreed to buy S3 Graphics. It seems as though Apple infringed upon two S3 patents. I don’t have to tell you where this is headed. It amazes me that it has gotten this far in that companies now have to spend time and money buying other companies to fight off lawsuits.

I feel like continuing yesterday’s rant, but I will hold off as I am expecting there will be more opportunities. Will the 49th lawsuit come later today, tomorrow, or has it already happened?

[via fosspatents blog]