In an open letter to the world today, Google Senior Vice President and Chief Legal Officer David Drummond decided to take a few moments and explain to all of us "what's happening" with regard to Apple, Microsoft, Android, how patents work, a free market economy, and the future of smartphones.
Drummond went to the mat early and often, reiterating the claim that 550,000 Android devices are activated every day, but then stating that this success has spawned "a hostile, organized campaign against Android by Microsoft, Oracle, Apple and other companies, waged through bogus patents."
If there's one issue that's seemed to dominate the tech world headlines this year, it's been lawsuits. Continuing the trend, in a potentially large decision today, the U.S. International Trade Commission gave an initial determination in Apple's patent infringement suit against HTC, and it isn't looking good for the latter.
Apple recently applied for patent protection for new iOS camera features, according to Patently Apple. The features, which "are to correct or compensate for tilt and/or perspective distortion generally associated with iOS device cameras", could be employed not only in current iOS devices like the iPhone and iPad, but also in future electronic devices that employ cameras, like wristwatches.
The Antitrust Division of the Justice Department has approved Apple's request to participate in an auction against Google for an estimated $900 million of intellectual property from bankrupt Nortel Networks Corp. While this ruling lets Apple in the door to the private auction, the Antitrust Division will continue to review any anticompetitive issue that may arise should Apple win.
Between Lion, iOS 5, and iCloud, we certainly learned about a plethora of upcoming features that will make their way down the Apple pipeline. It also appeared as though Apple may have been busy solidifying iCloud, having filed eleven iCloud trademark applications with the US Patent & Trademark Office.
No Katy Perry this week, but the last few days weren't bereft of hot news stories involving everyone's favorite computer and phone maker and post-PC device thingie maker as patents played a big roll plus a little bad news for one of Apple's competitors. Get out your wallet, Sergey!
Lodsys recently attempted to get a percentage of transactional income from a number of iOS developers, citing a patent on in-app purchases. Apple has subsequently -- and loudly -- told Lodsys to go home, but the whole ordeal's left us with patents on the brain. Patent applications are filed for every single thing that could possibly be patented, so they can give you a glimpse into the future plans of your favourite company. This is done for a number of reasons, not the least of which being that if they don't patent it, a competitor -- or patent holding company/troll -- might file for, and be awarded, the patent, leaving a company in the unfortunate position of having to pay to use their own invention. When they announced the iPhone in 2007, Apple proudly boasted of filing for 200 patents for the device, promising to aggressively defend them.
Patently Apple, that wonderful repository of all things Apple's trying to get a patent on, revealed yesterday that Apple was recently awarded eight new patents by the US Patent and Trademark Office, and that second on the list was a previously unknown, but undeniably sexy hybrid DisplayPort/USB 3.0 adapter.
Despite the lackluster response thus far to Ping, Apple’s first attempt at social networking, newly revealed patents show that the company isn’t stopping there -- someday, your iPhone may be used for social networking during shopping trips as well.