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Surprise, surprise: court-directed mediation talks between Apple (AAPL) and Samsung's (SSNLF.PK)...

Surprise, surprise: court-directed mediation talks between Apple (AAPL) and Samsung's (SSNLF.PK) CEOs failed to achieve a resolution to the companies' wide-reaching patent dispute. Among the reported points of contention are differing opinions on the value of Samsung's standards-essential patents. Perhaps a bigger issue is that Apple isn't interested in licensing many of its own patents, and instead wishes to use them as a hammer to wage "thermonuclear war" on Android. (yesterday)
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Comments (19)
  • Orangesauce
    , contributor
    Comments (24) | Send Message
     
    If patents aren't essential to industry standards compliance, there's no obligation to license them. That's the whole point of spending money on protected innovation in technology!
    23 Jul 2012, 06:43 PM Reply Like
  • skibimamex
    , contributor
    Comments (443) | Send Message
     
    Everyone knows that Google stole -- that's their "Do Only Evil" business model. This is not only an issue of Apple vs. Google; because as evidence, smartphone manufacturers that make more than 70% of android smart phones are already taking licenses from Microsoft as well (because Google's Android is an Equal Opportunity Thief) with Motorola the most prominent holdout. In fact, MMI 's CEO Jha threatened GOOG that it would also take a Microsoft license and Google stepped in and bought MMI instead to prevent that. Instead now, Microsoft has won ITC case agaisnt Motorola (now Google's subsidiary) and has been issued an import exclusion order so that it can now seek to restrict Motorola's Android smartphone imports.

     

    The problem in this global conflict is that while Microsoft is willing to be bought off with license fees (it has a business unit at Microsoft set up to generate IP licensing revenues), Apple is unwilling to tolerate infringers by granting licenses (because as opposed to Microsoft who can't get anybody to buy its Windows based smartphones so far, Apple actually has a very high margin smartphone franchise that it desires to protect its innovation). As the other writers pointed out, no one is forced to license their IP innovation (assuming that it is validated by litigation and patent re-examination) unless they have chosen to declare (self-decalred by the way) such IP as "essential" to an industry standard which then obligates them to license to all on FRAND terms.

     

    The problem here is that the infringement on software patents by android OEM's (as opposed to hardware design patents which are also being fought over) are difficult for the android smartphone OEM's to develop workarounds because the underlying infringer is Google's android OS and these OEM's are reliant upon Google to develop the workaround in the OS.

     

    Apple made peace with Nokia in 2010 when the two of them settled their suits against each other, but today, ever wonder why nobody (excluding trolls) is suing any manufacturer of Windows, Symbian, or Blackberry (both old Blackberry and new QNX) handsets, even though the same manufacturers who often also make Android smartphones. According to Foss Patents, instead large-cap companies with collectively over $1 trillion in market cap are suing (http://bit.ly/MXE4fb) manufacturers of android handsets, in what the author observes as the phenomenon that "Android continues to be an IP infringement lawsuit magnet."

     

    The smartphone wars seems evidently relatively easy to solve,...if Google will simply stop infringing (by designing its own workarounds) and/or pre-emptively negotiating licenses from those that it needs to for Android, but then Google boys never did like to play by anything other than their own rules. Now Google wants other people's innovation and IP to be considered as de facto standards or "commercially essential" standards and should be licensed simliar to FRAND-encumbered SEP's (http://bit.ly/MXE276) -- now that's really talking out of both sides of one's mouth.
    23 Jul 2012, 08:14 PM Reply Like
  • Advill
    , contributor
    Comments (2243) | Send Message
     
    Great explanation, Now is clear to me why so many suits around, going thermonuclear about Google fraud....is just that, I think that Samsung is in the middle (as all the others Android adopters) of tireless litigation, now the interesting point could be that Samsung and all the others sues Google for offering a stolen operative system.

     

    This could become a big big big issue for Google, its clear that Steve Jobs pass away changed nothing in Apple determination to go thermonuclear against Google, if you are in the middle, as Samsung case.. sorry.

     

    Rgds.
    23 Jul 2012, 09:10 PM Reply Like
  • noidea2
    , contributor
    Comments (52) | Send Message
     
    wow, tx, finally a big picture explanation!!
    24 Jul 2012, 02:50 AM Reply Like
  • Cameron Reed
    , contributor
    Comments (67) | Send Message
     
    This is complete hogwash.

     

    "The smartphone wars seems evidently relatively easy to solve,...if Google will simply stop infringing (by designing its own workarounds) "

     

    Of course, if there is a patent then Google will work around it. That's why Google's email client doesn't have the bouncy feature that iPhones do. That fact pretty much invalidates the rest of your argument.

     

    The look and feel of Android operating system (as opposed to the hardware) is very different from IOS. Certainly more different than the difference between Windows and MacOS.

     

    If Google was copying IOS don't you think that they would be the first target of Apple lawsuits? Apple could completely shut down Android by going to the source, not fighting every single hardware vendor out there. But they won't sue Google. Because they know they can't win.

     

    I realize that you probably have a lot of money on the line on Apple, but just making stuff up and hoping it will be true usually doesn't work.
    15 Aug 2012, 03:06 PM Reply Like
  • Ronin.
    , contributor
    Comments (1487) | Send Message
     
    I think that Apple doesn't go directly at Google because they would be difficult to deter Google that way.... google can claim that they don't sell the software they produced for Android, and therefore owe Apple very little in licensing. I think Apple is not after the money, but just wants to deter the selling of copycat products, as they take away consumer incentive to enter Apple's ecosystem.....thus, they must wage the war by proxy, going directly at the manufacturers who do make money on sales of products that are alleged to infringe on Apple's patents. Samsung is the one profiting and growing, so they should be the main opponent....

     

    Recall the cold war....the US and the communist countries faced conflicts of ideologies, but couldn't risk raging war with each other because of the threat of nuclear holocaust, so they fought wars by proxy in Korea, Vietnam, and Cambodia, supplying others and sometimes becoming directly involved in hot war, while pretending not to be....I think that there were times where US pilots were directly fighting soviet pilots, or US infantry were fighting Chinese infantry, but everyone tries to pretend that it wasn't happening to avoid a direct hot war between superpowers.... Remember our special forces equipping the Afghans to wear down the Soviets? We fought the soviets by proxy....we won that one and lost Vietnam both by attrition....In Afghanistan, payback looks like we lost our own war there by attrition decades later.....

     

    ...this reminds me of the Google/Apple battle....indirect warfare....
    15 Aug 2012, 03:23 PM Reply Like
  • Cameron Reed
    , contributor
    Comments (67) | Send Message
     
    "I think that Apple doesn't go directly at Google because they would be difficult to deter Google that way.... google can claim that they don't sell the software they produced for Android, and therefore owe Apple very little in licensing"

     

    Google can't get away with this. They have publicly stated that they are making billions from Android. A look into Google's books will easily prove that.

     

    Also, as many people have argued, Apple is not really after Samsung's money, they want to shut them down as competitors.

     

    The reason Apple doesn't sue Google is because they will lose. Much like Oracle lost when they sued Google over Android.
    15 Aug 2012, 03:27 PM Reply Like
  • Ronin.
    , contributor
    Comments (1487) | Send Message
     
    "Apple is not really after Samsung's money, they want to shut them down as competitors."
    ---yes, that was my point that I stated above. I'm not convinced that it would be easy to prove Google profits. Granted, my reasoning why they don't go directly after Google is my own thought but not from an informed law perspective, for I am not a lawyer .....another possibility, is that even if Google stopped developing for Android, the OEMs would just use what is available and do their own maintenance, leading to greater fragmentation, but Apple will have gone through a huge court battle and achieve very little if they don't go after the OEMs....what do you think?
    15 Aug 2012, 03:39 PM Reply Like
  • skibimamex
    , contributor
    Comments (443) | Send Message
     
    Cameron, I actually don't own any AAPL but I used to own GOOG, until I saw total stupidity being exhibited by the MMI acquisition. Ronin is correct in that it was easier to target the OEM's (particularly in certain venues such as the ITC where you have to establish a "domestic industry" in order for Section 337 violations of the Tarriff Act to be germane for ITC suits). However, it is all moot since GOOG has consummated on its "impulse purchase" of MMI, ostensibly for Motorola's patents in order to "protect Android". Why does Android need "protecting" if Google is as confident as you are that Android will win any patent litigation. If that were the case, we could have saved $12.5B of shareholders' money (I'm still speaking from past tense when I was a sharehodler of GOOG) and not pissed it down the drain. Evidently GOOG's executive management knows a bit more about its patent exposure than perhaps you do. Oh, and why over 70% of Android OEM's already are now paying license fees to Microsoft.

     

    Why dont you get yourself educated a bit, and read the following blog by Florian Mueller that documents all the cases involved in the smartphone wars in past 3 years. http://bit.ly/Oj6mUX

     

    After you have conducted your due diligence, I would love to then understand your perspective of why you think this is "hogwash" and that Google is assured to win. By the way the Oracle-Google case was largely over the issue of copyrightibility of API's (and Google actually lost and found by jury to have infringed but Judge Alsop issued after-the-fact JMOL that the 37 API's were not copyrightable, a judgement that is now under appeal). And of course, I don't need to explain to you the differences copyrights, versus trademarks or trade dresses, design patents, and utility patents.
    15 Aug 2012, 03:54 PM Reply Like
  • Coolest
    , contributor
    Comments (2) | Send Message
     
    As usual both sides will be disappointed. The judge will tell Samsung to pay the royalties and give Samsung the right to use all of the Apple patents. Apple and Samsung has all advantage to negotiate if Apple wants to limit the number of patents Samsung will be allowed to use. The judge will never allow Apple to shutdown Samsung Smartphone division, competition and choice are good for US customers. Both parties better wake up quick because I feel like the judge is running out of patience with their kid game.
    15 Aug 2012, 04:48 PM Reply Like
  • rubicon59
    , contributor
    Comments (1388) | Send Message
     
    @Coolest I thought the Jury would decide the verdict and the penalty?
    15 Aug 2012, 06:26 PM Reply Like
  • Cameron Reed
    , contributor
    Comments (67) | Send Message
     
    "Oh, and why over 70% of Android OEM's already are now paying license fees to Microsoft."

     

    You exaggerate. I've seen reports that say it's 53%. We don't know the terms of these deals. In Samsung's case it was reported that MSFT licensed Samsung technology in return for agreeing to work with MSFT's future OSs. No reason for Samsung to turn that down.

     

    You're wrong about Oracle vs. Google. It was about copyright *and* patent violations. Go to the source and read the heading of the complaint itself: http://goo.gl/465Fr

     

    Google's motive to buy MMI, which I don't fully agree with, was to protect the Android "ecosystem", which means protect the OEMs, not Google directly.

     

    About Florian Mueller please be honest and disclose that he has taken money from Microsoft. He is a Microsoft paid consultant (http://goo.gl/G7EV8).

     

    You yourself said that Google could end this easily by just working around Apple's patents. Indeed they could do that very easily, and in fact already are. So, your entire argument completely doesn't make sense.
    16 Aug 2012, 12:58 AM Reply Like
  • Sacto_Joe
    , contributor
    Comments (257) | Send Message
     
    Apple's patents aren't FRAND. Samsung's are. Samsung's trying to pull a fast one by equating the two.
    23 Jul 2012, 07:03 PM Reply Like
  • kmi
    , contributor
    Comments (4040) | Send Message
     
    Here is a link to a what I found a to be a remarkably well stated post made by an iOS app dev vis a vis patents after he was sued for infringement:

     

    http://bit.ly/SQWSC8
    23 Jul 2012, 08:28 PM Reply Like
  • felbert
    , contributor
    Comments (4) | Send Message
     
    I read it and I'd have to say it's remarkably poorly stated, unless you're a socialist. Patents are very different from trade secrets, like the formula for Coca Cola. A patent gives the inventor exclusive use of his invention, BUT he has to disclose how it works, and the invention will expire after a certain number of years. Where do you think generic drugs come from? Trade secrets have to be kept secret and you can keep them forever, but anyone can try to duplicate it, like Pepsi.

     

    It can get extremely complicated in some cases which is why the courts have to step in. What can be patented and what cannot requires legal interpretations that would make most people, including me, dizzy. It is no easy task for a company to obtain a patent so when they have one they should enforce it!

     

    To say these things some how belong to the people or should be owned by the government is nonsense. Do you think we'd have smartphones or the medical technology that keeps us alive if companies couldn't make billions for inventing and patenting the way they work? Socialism is a nice idea, but it just doesn't work. It breeds mediocrity, not excellence.
    23 Jul 2012, 09:59 PM Reply Like
  • kmi
    , contributor
    Comments (4040) | Send Message
     
    I think I'm going to start demanding $0.05 every time someone says 'socialism' on SA.

     

    Instead of making an arguement, falling back on 'it's socialism, and socialism is bad, so it's bad' as if that makes some kind on point is non-sensical and contributes nothing to any discussion.

     

    I want to respond to you, felbert, but I don't see the point.
    24 Jul 2012, 01:53 AM Reply Like
  • Ronin.
    , contributor
    Comments (1487) | Send Message
     
    This time, the word fits precisely, though... government ownership of industry is exactly the issue here with FRAND. The question is where is the judicious drawing of the lines. Certainly much should not fall under this category, and the system needs to remember to properly balance fairness, the incentive to invest in innovation, and the sharing of information to spur innovation. I believe common sense says that Android violates fairness, but it has been allowed to become widespread...now Google is saying it is ubiquitous and thus Apple should share it with everyone, uninhibited ....
    24 Jul 2012, 03:03 AM Reply Like
  • Sacto_Joe
    , contributor
    Comments (257) | Send Message
     
    Actually, we don't need to get into loaded terminology here. It's really a question of what the law presently states. The law doesn't presently look at Apple's multitouch patents as FRAND, for example, and really, the whole question should boil down to whether or not they are valid over existing knowhow when they were originally applied for. Yes, Googerola and Samsung are screaming bloody murder that they SHOULD be FRAND, but that's not what the law states. Woulda, coulda, shoulda, doesn't cut it, and Googerola and Samsung knew that from the get-go. Thank the Maker that Apple has the resources to battle these two goliaths to a standstill and permit justice to prevail. Maybe this will mark an end to pirating as a way of life.
    24 Jul 2012, 01:09 PM Reply Like
  • Ronin.
    , contributor
    Comments (1487) | Send Message
     
    Yes, that is true...yet I feel that Google has behaved as though Apple's technology is FRAND, but knowing that it wont be allowed, tries to imitate, but changes just enough to circumvent the laws.
    24 Jul 2012, 03:42 PM Reply Like
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