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New Googerola patent lawsuit puts Apple on the defensive

Posted: , by Scott H.

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New Googerola patent lawsuit puts Apple on the defensive
Google subsidiary Motorola’s latest patent lawsuit is putting Apple on the defensive according to several analysts. Apple has so far played the aggressor in most lawsuits internationally, including the Apple v Samsung lawsuit that is currently being deliberated by a jury. Since their lawsuit against Motorola was thrown out with prejudice earlier this year, Apple finds itself unable to use its favorite patents to respond to the new patent lawsuit Googerola filed with the ITC last week.

Dan Maycock of Slalom Consulting thinks this new tactic may be a game changer, indicating that "By Google taking the offensive, they can bring it up on their terms and make a first strike. They're posturing themselves, rather than waiting for Apple to be done with the Samsung patent proceedings and then firing something off at Google."

The timing has another benefit – Apple is expected to announce the iPhone 5 in the coming weeks. The iPhone 5 will be a larger hardware refresh than last year’s iPhone 4S, and will also be introducing an entirely new adapter (and hence a new ecosystem of peripherals); with sales of the iPhone 4S falling well behind the pace of Android handsets last quarter, Apple needs the iPhone 5 to sell well enough to make past peripherals a thing of, well, the past.

The ITC will almost certainly not rule on the lawsuit ahead of the launch of the next iPhone, but it could come in the next 6 months, when sales would still be expected to be on the high end of the annual iPhone sales cycle. That will put a lot more pressure on Apple to cut a deal, since a U.S. trade embargo would cripple sales. Even a temporary ban would shatter the image that Apple tries to project that they are the "true innovators" and everyone else is merely copying them (this was a theme that they used heavily during their closing arguments yesterday).

Will it work to Google’s advantage? It’s hard to say – Apple undoubtedly has other patents, but they will be scrambling to come from behind, and may decide that the risk isn’t worth taking. At the least it suggests that Google is taking a more strategic view of the ongoing mobile patent wars; if they can get leverage over Apple it’s at least possible that a cease fire could be reached between the iOS and Android camps.

And that’s something that users of all smartphones should hope fore.

source: eWeek

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posted on 22 Aug 2012, 14:28 44

1. structureman116 (Posts: 141; Member since: 14 Sep 2010)

Get em Google/Motorola!!! F**k the fruit!!!!

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 14:33 21

3. SuperAndroidEvo (Posts: 4888; Member since: 15 Apr 2011)

Google has been VERY quiet during this Samsung Vs Apple drama. It looks like Google is getting ready to exact some kind of answer, totally directed towards Apple that is. What goes around, I guess comes around! lol

This is getting VERY interesting indeed.

P.S. That picture is a total riot! lol

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 14:38 2

5. McJobs (Posts: 107; Member since: 08 Jul 2012)

that f**king fruit reinvented the phone few years ago. It's hard to remember what it was like before iPhone.

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 14:53 20

11. Ravail (Posts: 182; Member since: 14 Oct 2011)

Oh you Apple fanboys.. your so ignorant.

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 14:56 7

12. Aeires (unregistered)

People got along and just enjoyed their phones instead of all the "I'm better than you because I have 'X' phone" stupidity.

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 15:04 14

15. remixfa (Posts: 14597; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)

phones made calls.. texted... surfed the web.. had apps.. slide unlocks.. rectangles... touch screens.. green phone call buttons..

yup, i can see how much the world has changed since apple dropped the iphone.

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 15:07 10

17. Berzerk000 (Posts: 4275; Member since: 26 Jun 2011)

No, he is right. One thing Apple should get credit for, is re-inventing the smartphone by making it actually smart in 2007. It was the original iPhone that pushed all others to aim for innovation. Even though Apple is behind in a fair amount of areas now, the original iPhone is what started this whole "mobile revolution". The original iPhone set the standards. I love Android, but it wouldn't have gotten to where it is today without Apple pushing Google to come up with great and new things.

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 15:16 1

21. Mxyzptlk (Posts: 16336; Member since: 21 Apr 2012)

Again I think these are FRAND patents. You cant patent something that is fair and reasonable. This is funny since one of the heads of Google said patent lawsuits hurt the business yet look at what's going on here.

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 15:27 15

25. taz89 (Posts: 2014; Member since: 03 May 2011)

nope was revealed last week that these are not frand patents.

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 15:34 13

26. Sniggly (Posts: 7305; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)

Good job insisting on being wrong, brah.

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 15:47 14

27. GoBears (Posts: 454; Member since: 27 Apr 2012)

Haha yeah right. The original iPhone didn't even have a freaking game or useful app on it and you couldn't even install anything until the jailbreak community freed that device from it's pathetic OS. All it had was a good mobile browser. That's it. Period. I know because i had it and I still do. Apple stole a helluva lot more from the jailbreak devs than anyone ever stole from them.

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 15:59 4

28. tedkord (Posts: 13171; Member since: 17 Jun 2009)

You just refuse to look into it. Bad news, chum. Your constantly proclaiming the patents FRAND will not suddenly make them FRAND. They are not now, and will not be at the time of trial.

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 16:02 5

30. dmckay12 (Posts: 243; Member since: 25 Feb 2012)

I wouldn't say "making it actually smart." I would say they made it simpler (the way to get and use apps as well as the interface) and mass consumer friendly. And, I agree that android would have looked much different without the iPhone.

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 16:05 10

31. remixfa (Posts: 14597; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)

it didnt start anything. It took a bunch of preexisting tech and ideas and presented it in a new way that worked pretty well for the tech of the day by REMOVING tons of options other phones had and streamlining remaining options. The rest is their cult following and brilliant marketing.

The iphone has hardly changed in 6 OS generations. Thats not innovation, thats stagnation.

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 16:13 9

33. phitch (Posts: 214; Member since: 06 Mar 2012)

It is like you insist on stating the same tired old memes over and over and over and hope that somehow it will come true! Since the very first time you insisted these were FRAND it was revealed that these are in fact NOT FRAND! Yet you keep saying the same exact thing with every post.

Next, Google said "Software Patents hurt business" and the reality is they do. Here is why lawyers and judges and juries are not equipped to look at code and tell you the difference between one operation and another. It would be impossible for them to do so. So they often rely on the output, what you see, not the actually mechanism by which it is achieved. Software patents because of this become overly vague. Detailing how a piece of software grabs information using algorithm X+X using C++ vs doing the same thing using DART, PYTHON, JAVA, BASIC or any other language is important. When you are allowed to have a patent that is so vague it essentially covers every single possible method of achieving an end result then that patent is hurting competition.

Unlike hardware patents that often need diagrams showing how the patent will function. These patents actually require the use of specific technologies to achieve a set operation because of that it leaves competitors the ability to find another method to achieve the same result.

In other words if you could patent hardware the same way you can patent software -- "A means by which a computer or other device powered by a CPU receives mechanical input" would cover every conceivable way to put data into a computer, netbook, laptop, gameboy, xbox, ps3, and so on. That is why software patents stifle competition because the patent system allows them to be so vague.

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 17:12 1

39. dmckay12 (Posts: 243; Member since: 25 Feb 2012)

The iPhone started manufacturers making smartphones for consumers instead of smartphones for people who really deeded them. Windows Mobile, Palm OS, and Blackberry OS were all geared towards business use.

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 18:07 3

43. Pdubb (Posts: 248; Member since: 08 Aug 2011)

LOL You cannot patent FRAND patents. Are you listening to yourself as you type? It is already a patent! Once it is subject to FRAND you have to license it is all that comes from this. But I think it has been ruled these are not subject to FRAND.

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 19:11 1

45. ph00ny (Posts: 1378; Member since: 26 May 2011)

I didn't know that dumbing down phones to cater to normal consumer is considered changing the "smartphone"

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 19:11 1

46. ph00ny (Posts: 1378; Member since: 26 May 2011)

To you anything non-apple is FRAND. Guess what? You still have to pay for them FRAND or not

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 19:18 4

47. E.N. (Posts: 2610; Member since: 25 Jan 2009)

Try to have an unbiased viewpoint. It's so painfully obvious that the iPhone dramatically changed the smartphone. I really don't know how you could say otherwise.

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 20:23 1

48. downphoenix (Posts: 3165; Member since: 19 Jun 2010)

Not sure why you got thumbed down, it is pretty accurate that the Iphone did bring upon the touchscreen smartphone revolution. Sure, there were smartphones that were touchscreen before, but none offered the smooth experience on a touchscreen that the iphone did that was competitive or better than non touchscreen devices.

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 20:24 1

49. dmckay12 (Posts: 243; Member since: 25 Feb 2012)

Not dumbing them down. Apple was the first to really make a smartphone for the masses of people that didn't need them. They moved the smart phone from a specialty device to something everyone thinks they need. I think it is too simple and non-customizeable, but it started the "smartphone revolution."

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 21:51 2

52. remixfa (Posts: 14597; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)

it did. it "changed" the landscape completely. However it didnt actually ADD anything new. It just improved on a lot that was already there.

Hate to tell ya this, the market was evolving. It was slow, but eventually the hardware would have gotten stronger just as it has and OS's would have gotten more finger friendly, with or without the iphone. Its natural evolution of the system. The iphone was a market disruption because it forced a lot of those changes years before they would have happened otherwise. Ignoring the fact that the iphone removed dozens of features that were considered parts of "smartphones" at the time like customization,multitasking, MMS, ect, it did leap ahead a few evolution of others in terms such as browser, music, intuitiveness, finger friendly, stability, ect.

I thank Apple for jumping the system ahead 2 or 3 generations sooner than it would have on its own. However that has nothing to do with them thinking they own rectangles, vague shapes, minimalism, or a green phone icon. Nor does it excuse them for sitting on their laurels while the mobile OS kept hyper evolving right past them so they feel their only option to compete is to litigate.
What iOS was for RIM, Android is now for iOS... and they know it.

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 22:37

54. sadaivadai (Posts: 156; Member since: 22 Nov 2011)

Its not rectangles blah blah but like that only they
can proceed with all these things happening ..

When a product from other company is made to look like their's on which they have worked for years do you think they have sit idly or change their product themselves .. are you kidding .

I have been saying this all the time . Say me one mobile from Nokia , Motorola , Sony or Motorola which looks at least partially like Iphone ??

I can name several Samsung mobiles .

I know Samsung have improved their game now and million years ahead of apple . But with the first Galaxy S that's what they were saying .

Apple should have done all these that time itself .

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 23:32

56. Avinash.Meeniga (unregistered)

rather than that i think they just made them more main stream and cooler that's it

posted on 22 Aug 2012, 23:34 1

57. Avinash.Meeniga (unregistered)

why are you so ignorant i've seen your comments in a lot of articles and you are a lot biased and the apple don't even has a patent worth mentioning in the ongoing lawsuits

posted on 23 Aug 2012, 01:16

62. joey_sfb (Posts: 6409; Member since: 29 Mar 2012)

What apple/steve job done right is marketing the iPhone using a colorful simplistic UI vs Symbian a kitchen sink of features under an ugly UI.

posted on 23 Aug 2012, 03:53 2

64. anywherehome (Posts: 971; Member since: 13 Dec 2011)

and still someone thinks Apple re-invented phone.....they do not realize a huge fact:
at the very beginning iPhone bought just fans of Apple (in 90 % owned MAC) so the rest of the world started to think "there is something about iPhone"...but no, there wasnt...just icons with no Bluetooth transfer, multitasking, microsd, ....and other tons of usual features....and still YOU CAN NOT OPEN ANY LINK IN YOUR BROWSER!

and the great mistake began

the same was with the first iPads....90 % owned iPhones...

and the second mistake began

posted on 23 Aug 2012, 05:06 1

65. E.N. (Posts: 2610; Member since: 25 Jan 2009)

The market was and will always be evolving. With that said, smartphones today would not at all have been the same/similar if it wasn't for the iPhone. You've seen Android device prototypes before and after the launch of the iPhone right? Complete 180. It completely changed the way we interact with our phones with web browsing, applications, and a new way of interacting with a mobile device. That's pretty big deal. I know I'dost likely have some sort of touch screen device in my hands, but how it would work and look like, both hardware and software I can't even imagine.

"What iOS was for RIM, Android is now for iOS... and they know it."

- try not to aound so full of yourself. you have a habit of confusing your personal opinions with fact. What in the world makes you think Apple feels like they're the new RIM? "and they know it" lol please dont make me laugh. The fact is, Apple thinks their mobile OS is better. If they felt like they needed to be new like Android, all they would have to do is open their APIs and allow for full customization widgets and that alone may be enough to put a serious stab to Android. But they're not going for the same experience as Android and it seems like their strategy is paying off.

Millions of people have chosen iOS over Android. If the new iPhone is any good, expect further and greater success.

posted on 23 Aug 2012, 07:53

66. remixfa (Posts: 14597; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)

millions of people have chosen iOS over Android

A million people a day chose Android over iOS.

My point about the iOS/RIM statement was that Apple caught RIM with their guard down. RIM thought their OS was the best, and they felt like the iphone was a fad since they had a near lock down on the smartphone industry. They were not going for the same experience as the iphone. All the same statements you just made in defense of iOS are the same one's RIM made/could have made. Apple caught them with their pants down and ripped them a new one. They did that to pretty much everyone in the industry.

iOS hasnt really changed in 6 generations. BB OS had the same issue. Minor tweaks, bug fixes and a new feature each year. iOS ran around them like they were asleep. Android is doing the same to iOS right now. In the short span since Android was released it went from a buggy patchwork OS that even I couldnt stand, to the most feature rich OS, super stable, smooth as butter, nearly the exact same # of apps as iOS, and 3x-4x the daily activations as iOS. Where android releases feature after feature... fix after fix... Apple is still on their yearly bug fix and new feature update. Most of their updates have been "me too" additions from things that Android has already had. They are playing keep up, not follow the leader.

And now you have MS making Windows Phone into a real OS finally which presents a whole new set of challenges.

Thats not some "fanboy" statement, thats a real assessment of the current smartphone landscape.

iOS is stagnant compared to the competition and they know it. SJ's reluctance to take chances have cost them their wide margin lead. They still win in pure $$, but their market share is shrinking more than its growing. If Cook doesnt take some bold chances with iOS its going to be a marginal device in 3-5 years max just like RIM is now.

I dont like Apple as a company, I make no bones about that. They are disgusting, greedy, self serving on a level that I find intolerable (and as a free market guy, i am pretty tolerant) and they dont care how bad their working conditions are unless they get worldwide scrutiny.
However, I dont want iOS to disappear any more than Taco does. I love competition. It breeds more innovation. If it wasnt for Apple's market disruption our phones wouldnt be where they are today. Android might not have developed so fast. We might still be forced to have phones with windows 6.xx on them... eww... If iOS disappears or android disappears that huge grudge match competition we've all been benefiting from disappears with it.

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