A few days ago, Google and Samsung announced a surprising 10-year global patent licensing agreement. Mostly it was surprising because Samsung suing Google for patent infringement is about as likely as you suing your parents for patent infringement. So why bother? To attempt to make Apple look bad, and thereby prove the point that nothing is going to change anytime soon.
Google formed with an internal motto of "Don't Be Evil" in response to the perceived business practices of Microsoft, and then proceeded over the years to manipulate customer data (see what Google does when you search) and force software on users (see how you are already signed up for Google+) much like Redmond. Now the Mountain View company is taking hypocrisy to a new level with their latest lawsuit against the Apple- and Microsoft-led Rockstar Consortium. Ah, the irony!
Now that Apple has proven in court that Samsung slavishly copied the iPhone, and proved it twice, we have approached the part of the event where everyone scrambles to figure out who owes what part of the bill. Like two people on a blind date gone bad, Apple and Samsung both want to go home without paying any more than they have to. Here's hoping they just use one credit card for the bill, because people who give the waiter a handful of plastic to ring up separate amounts are totally annoying. Don't do that. So, what's the damage? Read on.
Last week, federal courts dismissed two consumer lawsuits against Apple, one dealing with privacy issues, the other dealing with antitrust issues. In both cases, consumers were seeking monetary damages from Apple, and in both cases, judges decided they'd heard enough and sent everyone home. Once again, we see that suing Apple over imaginary injuries is not a very effective get-rich-quick scheme.
An electrical engineer filed a lawsuit against Apple in California, claiming that he invented the smartphone and Apple was infringing on his idea. The jury sided with Apple, but it wasn't as clear-cut as you might think. Was this another case of a patent troll trying to score big against Apple, or was it a case of a deep-pocketed corporate behemoth crushing the little guy? Read on.
Two class-action lawsuits were filed against Apple this past week; one representing tens of thousands of high-tech workers, another representing owners of 27-inch iMacs with allegedly faulty screens. In the first case, other defendants in the lawsuit have already cashed out, while in the second, an angry music teacher prepares to go the distance. Will either case bring enough to court to make Apple have to open the checkbook?
Some people really have a hard time dealing with change. It seems whenever a popular software platform releases a new version, the interwebs are flooded with people whining about how much better everything was before (we’re looking at you, people on Facebook). Usually, when the next update comes around, these are the same people complaining about the changes again, and the irony there speaks for itself. With the recent release of iOS 7, the biggest change to iOS since its inception, Apple certainly opened itself up to those who love to complain about anything new or different, and the criticisms had to be expected. But was Cupertino prepared for one hater to lawyer up?
When Tim Cook led the big Apple Event last month announcing the new iPhone 5c and iPhone 5s, a lot of comparisons to his predecessor were made. Almost universally, it was declared once again that Tim Cook lacks whatever magic Steve Jobs had on stage. However, perhaps Tim Cook will do a better job of not breaking future patents with his lack of stagecraft; sometimes the ability to project a powerful "reality distortion field" has unintended consequences.
When the jury gathers in November to determine the new amount that Samsung owes Apple for copying the iPhone and iPad, Samsung would like it very much if no one was allowed to tell the jury about how it copied the iPhone and iPad. Also, Apple has decided to break down and take care of Breaking Bad viewers who didn't know they had to pay twice for the final season. Another week of adventures for the Cupertino legal team!
It is no secret that Apple heavily controls which apps are approved for download or sale in the iOS App Store. To some, Cupertino controls so much that it is a point of criticism, claiming Apple maintains a walled-in garden that prevents innovation. Many others, however, enjoy the high quality apps that are safe and work flawlessly with their devices. The issue becomes much more fuzzy, however, when Apple approves an app that violates someone's intellectual property or rights; if damages were incurred, who should pay? Invariably, Apple, along with their golden checkbook, is called onto the legal pitch, which is just what happened a few days ago in Thailand. Will Apple escape with just a yellow card, or will they settle this dispute with a penalty check?