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German Court Issues Injunction Against iPhone & iPad

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the circle-of-litigation dept.

Australia 349

angry tapir writes "A German court has ruled that Apple's iPhone and iPad devices infringe a Motorola patent and issued an injunction against sales of the products in Germany, in the latest move in a long series of legal battles between the companies. It's the latest stage in the international patent conflict that's been raging over mobile devices, which has included the recent Samsung victory over Apple in an Australian court and a defeat for Samsung in a Dutch court."

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349 comments

P0WN3D! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38339426)

Apple's about to get their ass handed to them by Google.

Re:P0WN3D! (4, Insightful)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339476)

The poetic part is that they fired the first shot, with Samsung. Will be fun to watch where the dominos end up.

Re:P0WN3D! (5, Funny)

exomondo (1725132) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339538)

Will be fun to watch where the dominos end up.

fallen....like a house of cards....checkmate.

Re:P0WN3D! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38340150)

Just take a deep breath and try for one moment to appreciate just how many Motorola's Apple's $81 billion bux would buy, outright. How many legal hours do you think that represents? How many companies can afford to do battle at these scales? Do you really think Germany is that important when China sits there with a 1% Apple penetration?

Legal issues aside, sonny, you may want to reconsider calling this dominoes. It's clear you're not familiar with the game or business, in general.

Re:P0WN3D! (3, Funny)

Colonel Korn (1258968) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340264)

Just take a deep breath and try for one moment to appreciate just how many Motorola's Apple's $81 billion bux would buy, outright. How many legal hours do you think that represents? How many companies can afford to do battle at these scales? Do you really think Germany is that important when China sits there with a 1% Apple penetration?

Legal issues aside, sonny, you may want to reconsider calling this dominoes. It's clear you're not familiar with the game or business, in general.

And it's clear you're not familiar with a mixed metaphor.

Re:P0WN3D! (5, Funny)

spyder-implee (864295) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339890)

I thought the poetic part was that the German economy was the only one in the Euro where people might actually be able to afford an iPhone/Pad.

You little whore! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38339486)

Don't read this... it is a curse...

  In 2007, a little boy named Timothy was standing in the hallway inside of his house. He then turned towards the place where the hallway connects with his mom's bedroom and spotted a box of graham crackers. This made him realize that there was a new rule in his house: anyone who walks past the box of graham crackers must allow the large black man standing near it to fuck their ass! Then, for some reason, he tried to run past the box of graham crackers and was grabbed by the large black man. The large black man looked at his bootyass naked ass and screamed, "There is no hole!" Timothy then escaped and ran into his mom's closet, and the black man followed. The black man then bumped into a cabbage patch kid in the closet and angered it. Timothy managed to escape outside while the black man's ass was turned into a rumblehouse. Then, Timothy noticed that a close friend of his had his car parked in front of his house and was signaling him to get inside. Timothy did so, and the car took off down the road at great speed while Timothy explained his situation to his friend.

  While Timothy was celebrating the fact that he escaped, the car began slowing down; his friend then said, "Now, now, now's the time right now!"

  Timothy asked him what he was doing. His friend grinned evilly and replied, "What slowness can I offer you? I'm copyright owner Madow!" and turned into an old man wearing a butler's outfit.

  The car continued to slow down, and the cabbage patch kid was catching up to them. Timothy then got out of the car (since he could run faster than it was moving) and began running. However, what seemed to be an invisible entity lifted him into the air and thrusted him ass-first around the world at a speed greater than the speed of light! Eventually, Timothy's bootyass naked ass crashed directly into the very cabbage patch kid he was trying to escape from! The cabbage patch kid was then sucked into Timothy's ass as if his ass was a spaghetti noodle (just like grandma)! At that point, his ass became a bouncehouse for the cabbage patch kid, and major tickle was inflicted upon it!

  Now that you have read this, the very same cabbage patch kid will get sucked right up your ass as if your ass is a spaghetti noodle, and major tickle will be inflicted upon it!

  You can prevent this by doing the following: post this comment in three different threads.

Re:You little whore! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38339510)

Ah yes, the curse of gullibility.

Re:You little whore! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38339554)

Then who was phone?!

Re:P0WN3D! (5, Informative)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339990)

the article is idiocy and so is your comment.

We have the fact that apple already tried to sue Motorola over the xoom [dailyfinance.com]. This is just the response [slashdot.org], which was done well before google acquired motorola.

The "Google" Action will be if/what we see from google as a result of this reflecting on them going forward, which could be entirely nothing.

Get your bootyass tickled, easy! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38340126)

Don't read this... it is a curse...

      In 2007, a little boy named Timothy was standing in the hallway inside of his house. He then turned towards the place where the hallway connects with his mom's bedroom and spotted a box of graham crackers. This made him realize that there was a new rule in his house: anyone who walks past the box of graham crackers must allow the large black man standing near it to fuck their ass! Then, for some reason, he tried to run past the box of graham crackers and was grabbed by the large black man. The large black man looked at his bootyass naked ass and screamed, "There is no hole!" Timothy then escaped and ran into his mom's closet, and the black man followed. The black man then bumped into a cabbage patch kid in the closet and angered it. Timothy managed to escape outside while the black man's ass was turned into a rumblehouse. Then, Timothy noticed that a close friend of his had his car parked in front of his house and was signaling him to get inside. Timothy did so, and the car took off down the road at great speed while Timothy explained his situation to his friend.

      While Timothy was celebrating the fact that he escaped, the car began slowing down; his friend then said, "Now, now, now's the time right now!"

      Timothy asked him what he was doing. His friend grinned evilly and replied, "What slowness can I offer you? I'm copyright owner Madow!" and turned into an old man wearing a butler's outfit.

      The car continued to slow down, and the cabbage patch kid was catching up to them. Timothy then got out of the car (since he could run faster than it was moving) and began running. However, what seemed to be an invisible entity lifted him into the air and thrusted him ass-first around the world at a speed greater than the speed of light! Eventually, Timothy's bootyass naked ass crashed directly into the very cabbage patch kid he was trying to escape from! The cabbage patch kid was then sucked into Timothy's ass as if his ass was a spaghetti noodle (just like grandma)! At that point, his ass became a bouncehouse for the cabbage patch kid, and major tickle was inflicted upon it!

      Now that you have read this, the very same cabbage patch kid will get sucked right up your ass as if your ass is a spaghetti noodle, and major tickle will be inflicted upon it!

      You can prevent this by doing the following: post this comment in three different threads.

Great! (5, Interesting)

Daetrin (576516) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339440)

Maybe if _all_ the big players suffer enough then there will actually be some support for real patent reform.

(Not to mention of course that it's nice to see Apple get nailed after all the patent crap they've pulled on others.)

Re:Great! (5, Insightful)

Trepidity (597) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339458)

I'd put my cynical money on them finding some way to reform the patent system that only really benefits large companies while still screwing over individuals, small businesses, and free software developers, but I do hope you're right.

Re:Great! (5, Insightful)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339578)

teach your children how the system really is, not how they want you to think it is. (note, this be challenging as everyone is going to fight you on this, schools and everyone else 'in charge').

then hope that by the time they have power and are in control of things, they remember the lessons you taught them and they can make changes.

its absolutely hopeless for our generation. but the next one, maybe. maybe. IF we teach them how bad the current one is and stop covering it up and sugarcoating (disney-ing, to so speak) it.

I was brougth up with the myth that mr policeman is there to help and mr government man is, also. both are blatant lies and it took me decades to learn the real truth. I'd like to hope that the next generation might actually learn from OUR mistakes and make things better.

but for us, right now, nothing will change. inertia is too great. big bodies in motion keep going in their same directions.

Re:Great! (5, Insightful)

ohnocitizen (1951674) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339866)

If we wait for our children to take up the fight, we will wait forever. As children grow, our generation will replace our parents as "the ones in charge", and we will oppress them and keep them from the halls of power the same way the previous generations do now. It is a cycle without end, unless we say WE are the generation to make change, and act on it. If that isn't enough to get you active, consider this: while we wait for our children to somehow rise up, we let everyone harmed by the current state of the world suffer.

Re:Great! (5, Insightful)

meerling (1487879) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340158)

Most of the people in power are those that vigorously sought it out.
Those people are almost always those who want power to have power, not to wield it for the greater good, justice, or compassion.
These, of course, are the worst people to have that power.
So even if you raise a generation of 99.9% kind and caring people, 90% of the positions of power will belong to that power grubbing remainder.

The only way to change that is either eliminate all positions of power, find a means to ensure that would be power mongers can never attain it, or somehow alter humanity itself so there is no such thing as a desire for power. Honestly, I don't think any of those will ever happen, though I can imagine a dictatorial situation where all the power is held by one small group so no-one else can attain any power, but that just eliminates competition, not the problem.
(And yes, I dream of a utopia where the would be politicians and such can never obtain the power they crave because they are considered unfit for the job, but the problem with utopians is that even science fiction writers don't believe in the possibility of a utopia being real.)

Of course this whole thing with Apple is the result of a pissing contest it looks like they started. Guess they are going to have much bigger problems if the wind keeps shifting direction. (Patenting a flat rectangle that's black with beveled edges. What moron let that through?)

Re:Great! (2)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340196)

we can start now, but I don't think its realistic to expect to SEE change in our lifetime.

those who are the 'haves' are not going to give things up without a fight and I don't see a french (or any other kind) of physical violent revolution coming to the US anytime soon.

change (nonviolent kind) has to be slow and that's in lifetimes, not decades.

wish I was wrong. prove me wrong, I won't mind ;)

Re:Great! (5, Insightful)

GumphMaster (772693) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339724)

No reform required. That's exactly how it works now. The small guy holding a patent cannot afford to enforce it against the big guys. Even a small guy that would eventually win, with damages and costs awarded, has to stump up the costs in advance from a cash flow that typically cannot sustain it.

Re:Great! (2)

obarthelemy (160321) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339748)

That, and the system actually needs to benefit lawyers too, since lawyers are a disproportionate part of politicians and political contributors and lobbyists. They have right now a system that serves them well, they'll fight change or find a way to make it better for them (ie, even more litigious).

Re:Great! (1)

Ramin_HAL9001 (1677134) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340204)

That, and the system actually needs to benefit lawyers too, since lawyers are a disproportionate part of politicians and political contributors and lobbyists. They have right now a system that serves them well, they'll fight change or find a way to make it better for them (ie, even more litigious).

EXACTLY.
The the US Supreme court isn't there to benefit anyone but the large law firms, to hell with ordinary citizens and technology companies, and anyone who does any actual work. It is all one big extortion racket, designed to make money for lawyers.

No matter how devastating this patent situation becomes to tech companies, change WILL NOT be affected.

Re:Great! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38339480)

Yup, mabey if were lucky they will reform how patents work or play nice. Unlikely though, what probably happen is they increase the amount of patents they have and go to battle more frequently till they somehow find a way to screw over existing customers. By doing something like suing X company for infridgement A and thus being required to brick X companies cell phone customers phones through an "update". I give it a a few years, 10 tops till this happens.

Re:Great! (5, Insightful)

wvmarle (1070040) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339490)

Well, let's see, the tally so far.

Apple is blocked from selling iPad and iPhone.

Samsung is blocked selling their tablets and phones elsewhere.

Now with a little luck within a year or two no-one is allowed to sell any smartphone or tablet anywhere in the world.

The winners will be: the Chinese manufacturers who don't care about patents and copyrights, who will just continue to produce, and sell their products all over the world on the grey markets at rock-bottom prices.

Works for me.

Re:Great! (2)

gman003 (1693318) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339652)

I think we should start calling this whole thing "the 2011 Patent War". That's basically what it is - a war, just fought in global courtrooms instead of global hills and fields, and fought with lawsuits and injunctions instead of artillery and carpet-bombing.

And, eventually, one of them is going to get majorly destroyed. Especially if international court cases can be taken as precedent - once one case is decided, they'd all fall in line. IANAL, so I don't know if that's the case.

Re:Great! (3, Interesting)

wvmarle (1070040) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339760)

Patents are supposed to work the same all over the world. They may differ in details such as amount of penalties, back-penalties, etc - the basics (what is covered, and what constitutes infringement) should be roughly the same. So indeed if one courts rules one way, likely courts in other countries will rule the same.

But to come back to your statement about war: mind that there are no winners in war. There are only losers. In WWII the allied forces were considered the winners, but the rest of Europe was as much in tatters as loser Germany was. Both sides lost huge in form of people killed or seriously wounded and disabled, buildings destroyed, infrastructure destroyed, economic losses due to the high cost of warfare and the lost production, etc. It took enormous financial support from mainly the US to help get Europe back on its feet.

In these patent wars there will be no "Marshall plan" when the dust settles. Both Samsung and Apple (I think they can be considered the main parties here) may end up seriously crippled. Samsung has much more than just phones and tablets (they produce many other consumer electronics, and also parts for them, including parts for Apple products), Apple otoh is more reliant on their phone/tablet business, and losing too many of this kind of suits may cause them to go bankrupt in the end. And for side players like Google the mobile phone business is merely a way to expand/protect their core business, so they don't have much to lose there.

Re:Great! (3, Informative)

0123456 (636235) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339986)

Patents are supposed to work the same all over the world.

Why?

But to come back to your statement about war: mind that there are no winners in war. There are only losers. In WWII the allied forces were considered the winners, but the rest of Europe was as much in tatters as loser Germany was.

WWII destroyed the British Empire, handed about half the human race over to communists where they couldn't compete with Western manufacturers and destroyed most of Europe's industrial production capacity. America benefited massively from the war because it was left with no real competition and the only large-scale manufacturing capacity in the West.

Re:Great! (3, Insightful)

wvmarle (1070040) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340062)

Patents are supposed to work the same all over the world.

Why?

Because 1) they are supposed to fully and clearly describe an invention, so testing whether another machine uses a certain invention doesn't leave much grey area, and 2) they're based on international agreements.

Note that I say "supposed", I know it's idealising and that practice leaves a lot of room for interpretation. Yet in practice if a patent is found to be infringed upon in one country, very likely other countries' courts will come to the same conclusion.

WWII destroyed the British Empire, handed about half the human race over to communists where they couldn't compete with Western manufacturers and destroyed most of Europe's industrial production capacity. America benefited massively from the war because it was left with no real competition and the only large-scale manufacturing capacity in the West.

America was a remote party of the war, like they are now in Iraq and Afghanistan. It costs heaps of money, leaves the target in tatters, but nothing much happens on home soil. Same for WWII: there were no bombardments of US cities, no US bridges blown up, few US merchant vessels sunk. Compare that to the European countries.

Like now if Samsung and Apple (aka Germany and the other European countries) kill off each other, Google (aka US) maybe chipping in as secondary party getting hurt on the sidelines but not in their cores, parties like Google and of course all other manufacturers see two major competitors gone, opening up a huge market potential for them.

Re:Great! (1)

um... Lucas (13147) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340228)

i don't think it was communism that destroyed eastern europes industrial capability. More like american and british bombs. Rest of your point still stands though. Of course, all these years later, Germany is once again europes powerhouse.

Re:Great! (2)

gman003 (1693318) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340108)

Both sides are already taking damage by not being able to sell their goods in certain areas, and they're spending fortunes on lawyers. It's only going to get worse - I can envision these legal cases going on for years (it's taken *how* long to nearly kill SCO?)

So Apple's more threatened. That means they're more likely to do something stupid and desperate. You think they'd try to block them from being manufactured, by getting involved with the Chinese judicial system? That would be a near-instant kill - you can't sell what you can't make, and without China it's hard to manufacture mass products cheaply.

Best-case scenario, of course, is that the War causes so much damage that patent reform becomes a pressing issue even for those who thought they were benefiting from it.

Re:Great! (3, Insightful)

Myopic (18616) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339830)

That's basically what it is - a war, just fought in global courtrooms instead of global hills and fields, and fought with lawsuits and injunctions instead of artillery and carpet-bombing.

I have to say, I strongly prefer this kind of war.

Re:Great! (4, Funny)

Fluffeh (1273756) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339928)

I think I would prefer to see these companies slug it out akin to the ancient gauls [wikipedia.org]:

Another very important aspect of Celtic ritual warfare at this time was single combat. To settle a dispute and measure one's prowess, it was customary to challenge an individual warrior from the other army to ritual single combat to the death while cheered on by the opposing hosts. Such fights were common before pitched battle, and for ritual purposes tended to occur at river fords. For examples of this behavior, one can read the epic literature of Ireland, such as the Ulster Cycle and Fenian Cycle, as well as accounts of Gaelic wars such as the "Wars of the Gael with the Foreigners" and Geoffrey Keating's "History of Ireland.

Ritual Combat would later manifest itself in the duel, as seen in the Scottish Martial Arts of the 18th century. The victor was determined by who made the first-cut. However, this was not always observed, and at times the duel would continue to the death.

"You there! Lawyer with the brown briefcase, I pick YOU for combat. Prepare yourself!"

Re:Great! (1)

gman003 (1693318) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340280)

Or hell, just find some jurisdiction where the old laws are still on the books, and challenge the other to a duel. Throw down the gauntlet, demand your satisfaction, pistols at dawn, field of honor, and so on.

In addition, trial by combat has never been explicitly made illegal in the United States (according to Wikipedia, IANAL, citation needed, etc.)

Re:Great! (1)

jsse (254124) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339920)

Well, let's see, the tally so far.

Apple is blocked from selling iPad and iPhone.

Samsung is blocked selling their tablets and phones elsewhere.

Now with a little luck within a year or two no-one is allowed to sell any smartphone or tablet anywhere in the world.

The winners will be: the Chinese manufacturers who don't care about patents and copyrights, who will just continue to produce, and sell their products all over the world on the grey markets at rock-bottom prices.

Works for me.

Nah, blackmarket prices of iPhone/iPad would be hyping up when they are getting more difficult to get, and the prices of China made tablets and phones would also raise with the absent of major competitors. The whole world would be hurting, and surely Apple would hurt much less because their products are still in very high demand thanks to their brilliant production strategy by scarcity.

It doesn't work for me.

Re:Great! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38339780)

You're pretty fucking stupid if you think Apple started this mess. Do some research and you'll quickly see that they got sued by a number of companies before they started filing counter-suits.

Re:Great! (3, Insightful)

Man On Pink Corner (1089867) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339804)

This is just a recapitulation of what happened when wireless tech was ramping up in the first few decades of the 20th century. The patent wars were nasty, brutal, and long enough to put an entire generation of lawyers' kids through college.

Nothing changed. It won't change this time, either, because there are more lawyers at the controls of the US government today than there ever have been.

Ever since Steve died (0)

koan (80826) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339454)

It seems like things have turned sour for Apple,(no pun intended) I know these patent wars have been going on for some time but in the last 2 months I have seen a lot more anti Apple articles than I recall ever reading before.
The timing of it is most likely coincidence, or maybe not.

Re:Ever since Steve died (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38339586)

The RDF is fading..

Re:Ever since Steve died (0)

erroneus (253617) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339744)

You can't be serious. The ball on this started rolling BECAUSE of Steve Jobs and when he did before he died. He just doesn't get to see what the score is since he started his game. Most of us agree, regardless of what, if any, side we are on that this will not go well for anyone and so far, it's seeming to work out that way. There is no government or law in any nation that says "cool companies are exempt."

Reporting a defeat for Apple isn't an "Anti-Apple" story anyway. A legal decision was rendered based on evidence which was presented. By your measure, if your favorite sports team was defeated in the last game, would the reporting of such in the news constitute an "anti-home-team" news story?

Historically, Apple has won most of its stupid legal attacks. Apple "lost me" with the Apple IIe and the Franklin. But they also lost me further with their betrayal of their agreement with Apple records that they never get into the music business... they did so with impunity. Apple plays pretty dirty and always have. What is new here is that it's not working any longer and it could be because they are picking on targets which are of equal or greater size than themselves.

Re:Ever since Steve died (2)

Myopic (18616) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339858)

Yeah, but Apple Computer did pay Apple Corps handsomely when they made their music store. Money solves problems like that.

Re:Ever since Steve died (-1, Flamebait)

koan (80826) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339878)

I am serious, I have seen more anti apple articles in the last 2 months since his death, and that is all I said isn't it.

So tired of you moronic fucks that can't comprehend what you read.

Re:Ever since Steve died (0, Troll)

Mark19960 (539856) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340152)

It's an anti-apple story because they lost?
I guess we should have it one way only: Apple always wins and we all lose?

Meh..... go hang with Florian... your both good at insulting people.

Re:Ever since Steve died (2)

Daniel Phillips (238627) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339940)

Perhaps there are more anti-Apple articles because Apple's practices have become more despicable? And that more because of Jobs than because of his absence.

FRAND Patent War (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38340032)

Can't wait until Microsoft starts leveraging FRAND patents against Google.

Mayhem in Mannheim (4, Insightful)

siddesu (698447) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339460)

If it was not yet obvious to someone that patents and litigation do more damage to free commerce than blatant and slavish copying, the abyss of ridiculosity that ha ensued in the wake of the recent Apple vs. * and * vs. Apple cases should have proved it once and for all with vengeance. Alas, the business leaders of the world and their political clients will continue to be oblivious to the issues. In the meantime, Florian Mueller and the rest of them patent "experts" rub hands in satisfaction in the background.

It won't change anything (3, Insightful)

dbIII (701233) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339540)

Marconi vs Telsa was also ridiculous, as was Edison against a lot of people. The US patent system has degenerated a lot since that time instead of improving.

Re:Mayhem in Mannheim (2)

poena.dare (306891) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339932)

"...not yet obvious to someone that patents and litigation do more damage..."

CEO: Are patents and litigation do more damage to free commerce than blatant and slavish copying?

Consulting Lawyer: Preposterous!

Lobbyist: Never!

CEO: OK then. Carry on.

Payback is a bit (1/8th of a byte) :p (1)

youn (1516637) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339518)

i guess they are about to get a sweet taste of their own medicine :)

Re:Payback is a bit (1/8th of a byte) :p (3, Informative)

DJRumpy (1345787) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340050)

Be careful what you wish for. These are FRAND patents that are in question. Motorola successfully argued that they did not have to license a FRAND patent to Apple unless Apple paid damages above and beyond the cost of the standard FRAND license rate issued to everyone else for 'past' infringement, and the additional damages are left vague under German law, meaning any ridiculous amount could pop out of the courts.

Given that Google is the new 'OS' kid in town, you should probably read up on FRAND patents and why they are supposed to be offered at a standard rate to everyone.

Patent wars are business as usual but when they start mucking around with FRAND patents in this way, it should make anyone in the tech business pay attention.

Checkers anyone? (3, Interesting)

metalmaster (1005171) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339526)

If these patent wars continue the map of Europe will look like a checkerboard. White country gets the Google product while black gets the Apple product

Be done (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38339530)

Just ban all mobile phones and tablets and be done with it.

Re:Be done (3, Funny)

Cigarra (652458) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339822)

Just ban all mobile phones and tablets and be done with it.

King Solomon, is that you?!?

Re:Be done (2)

Fluffeh (1273756) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340112)

King Solomon, is that you?!?

I think Soloman would have suggested they cut the patent in half and give one half to Apple and one half to Samsung.

Actually, in this case, that wouldn't be a bad idea. Cutting up all the patents...

Slammed ... (4, Informative)

giorgist (1208992) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339576)

Slammed ...

Even better considering that apple was caught flogging off their patents to a patent troll, hoping to hurt as many "competitors" as possible.
Every article written will hopefully include all the stories together to paint the apple darling in a new light.

http://techcrunch.com/2011/12/09/apple-made-a-deal-with-the-devil-no-worse-a-patent-troll/

Re:Slammed ... (0, Troll)

DJRumpy (1345787) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340060)

You mean much like Google was caught giving patents to handset vendors so they could in turn sue Apple with said patents?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-14832762 [bbc.co.uk]

Google acted in self defense (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38340186)

Google was trying to defend it's business partners against Apple's hyper-aggressive bogo-patent lawsuits.

It was plainly obvious that Apple was trying - in a nasty under-handed way - to compete unfairly against Android. Apple found it easier to sue companies that use Android, instead of suing Google directly. Microsoft does the same scam, all the time.

Don't kid yourself, Apple is 100% to blame for all of this.

Re:Google acted in self defense (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38340224)

Or perhaps you should consider that Google infringed on patents they should have purchased instead, and left their handset vendors woefully unprepared and in the cold.

Did you ever stop to think that Google might have infringed since it had essentially no legs in the OS business prior to Chrome and Android? They are relative newcomers in both the phone and the OS market. The fact that they had to start hastily start buying up patent pools in the hopes they would get something of value out of them speaks volumes. The fact that they had to start selling those patents to the handset vendors to 'defend' themselves also speaks volumes.

He who lives by the sword... (5, Insightful)

stox (131684) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339610)

dies by the sword.

Apple will soon learn.

Ever wonder why you see so few patent lawsuits from IBM relative to their portfolio? IBM uses their portfolio like a scalpel. Apple has uses theirs like a shotgun.

Re:He who lives by the sword... (1)

Nerdfest (867930) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339856)

I prefer to think of their weapon as a "douche nozzle".

Re:He who lives by the sword... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38339922)

That's not really fair to douches, as they actually serve a purpose.

Re:He who lives by the sword... (1)

OverflowingBitBucket (464177) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340074)

> Ever wonder why you see so few patent lawsuits from IBM relative to their portfolio?

Personally, I just assumed it was the same reason that you see very few knife attacks on the hull of a battleship.

Re:He who lives by the sword... (1)

ediron2 (246908) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340080)

Huh, I thought it was because IBM has become pretty worthless on the hardware and invention front since they became primarily a consultancy.

(Power CPU's and stuff notwithstanding, I am kidding a little. But scalpel? REALLY? Anyone that can say that IBM wields proprietary aspects of their computer technology like a frickin' scalpel needs to reexamine the first 70 or 80 years of IBM's history).

Serves Apple right. (3, Interesting)

unity100 (970058) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339644)

They not only tried to prevent samsung on grounds of 'rectangular shapes', but they also transferred their patents recently to a proxy company to sue ALL mobile phone providers.

All is the result of the strategy jobs laid out. 'theft' my ass. theft of rectangular shapes that is.

anyways. what goes around, comes around.

Re:Serves Apple right. (4, Insightful)

erroneus (253617) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339762)

No, this does not serve Apple right. This doesn't even come close to the damage and harm Apple has caused through their legal actions of these sorts. For them to be served right, the public would have to stop buying iThings for at least long enough for Apple to notice.

Re:Serves Apple right. (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38340176)

Pretty great passion and moral outrage there. Don't let the facts -- like the way "rectangular shape" was one of 7 design attributes that Samsung cloned -- get in the way of a good rant.

What goes around comes around (2, Interesting)

Billlagr (931034) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339676)

Did Apple seriously think that they could get away with their asshole-ish behaviour forever without any repercussions? It was seriously short sighted of them to think that there wouldn't be an eventual backlash, or that they underestimated how much of a backlash once it got up some momentum. Just my own observations too, the backlash seems to be trickling down to the consumer level, I've heard quite a bit of talk around the office of jumping ship to Android when phone contracts expire from people who previously wouldn't part with their iPhone. YMMV.

Re:What goes around comes around (1)

RandomFactor (22447) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339850)

I take anecdotal sales impacts with a lot of salt.

There is one ray of sunshine as cases and counter cases fly.

When Apple wins, they don't benefit much, and the competing ecosystem doesn't suffer significantly. The damage they are doing to a whackamole competitor isn't going to gain them much in sales since people who aren't buying an iThing are generally going to switch to one of the alternative non-iDevices.

When they lose however, all their competitors benefit. There is no alternative to current model iPad or iPhone, those dollars go to a competitor.

Of course Apple has money to burn, and this asymmetry has no doubt been considered and the decision made that it was worth spending 10:1 in legal costs against lower margin competitors.

So here we are.

Oblig XKCD (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38339704)

Re:Oblig XKCD (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38340104)

Uh ... this is an article about Intellectual Property, not Internet Protocols ... I can see where you went wrong, though!

I want more lawsuits. (1)

FauxReal (653820) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339706)

I hope at some point the entire mobile market is frozen solid with injunctions dependent on a infinite loop of IP/Patent cases. I will probably die from laughing too hard. Not sure if my guts will explode or if I'll have a aneurysm. On second thought, I'd rather not die. I'll have to carry some emergency Valium just in case.

will it ever end? (1)

Jarik C-Bol (894741) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339708)

At what point will we finally reach the realization that certain design features are NOT original to anyone, and simply required to obtain basic useable function from a smartphone? At some point, this stupidity has to stop, right?

Samsung tablet designs pre-iPad? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38339842)

Have you seen the Samsung tablet designs before the first iPad come out and the designs after the iPad came out (including the packaging)? Pretty obvious they copied Apple and it wasn't obvious to them (or anyone else) how to design an "obvious" tablet or packaging for it.

Re:Samsung tablet designs pre-iPad? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38339946)

Have you seen the Samsung tablet designs before the first iPad come out and the designs after the iPad came out

Do you find it odd that Samsung's photo frame design [androidauthority.com] circa 2006, is almost identical to their Tablet design [droidmatters.com] that followed it? Right down to the Samsung logo on the front and the lack of any visible buttons on the front? That's just Samsung's product design.

Re:will it ever end? (1)

inglorion_on_the_net (1965514) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340270)

At some point, this stupidity has to stop, right?

I'm with you in hoping it will, but in terms of what would have been sensible, it should have stopped a looooong time ago.

Tech Culture (1)

Wolfling1 (1808594) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339716)

At first, I was like 'damn patent laws', but then I was like 'what if Apple did steal the technology?'.

This ruling implies that Apple stole the technology from Motorola, and the lawsuit is Motorola's attempt to force Apple to relent.

Congratulations. I've passed patent trolling 101.

What concerns me most is that there are enough of these rulings being made at the moment to suggest that all the large technology houses are simply stealing each other's technology on the basis of saying 'prove that I stole it'. Its kind of like the schoolyard bully saying 'make me'. It occurs to me that these injunctions are too much about cash changing hands and not enough about providing a disincentive to the company that stole the technology.

Perhaps some more novel punishments need to be dished out by the judges. For example: indict all current and past company directors on criminal charges, and proceed with extradition orders. That might put the frighteners into some of them.

Re:Tech Culture (1)

Fluffeh (1273756) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340192)

What concerns me most is that there are enough of these rulings being made at the moment to suggest that all the large technology houses are simply stealing each other's technology on the basis of saying 'prove that I stole it'.

The other logical reason for this that you may not have considered is simply that the patents that are being awarded/approved are merely logical next steps in evolution of the technology. I think that is the main reason of why so many of us /.'ers get cranky with the patent system. So many patents are awarded (and then used to sue others) that are merely logical extensions of a current idea/technology that they should NEVER be patentable.

A good example is this patent awarded to Apple [tacticalip.com]. When you have a touchscreen that you can input data with a finger, surely the idea to have the screen scroll by moving your finger along the screen and zoom in and out by moving two fingers closer or further apart is obvious. It is an INPUT device. To have those sort of simple gestures is the logical, blatantly obvious, anyone can think of it idea possible.

I wouldn't agree that novel punishments are needed by judges - I would say that less* patents like this should be granted.

* By less, I mean none.

Cross Licensing (1)

msevior (145103) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339726)

I think this is part of a cross licensing strategy that could finally make Apple stop being so stupid. The rest of the phone world has patents on tech that Apple employs. The rest of the phone world has FRAND'ed those patents. My guess is that this stuff is trying to force Apple to give up it's own small improvements related to iPhones and iPads as being world-changing tech available only to them.

We'll see.

Re:Cross Licensing (1, Insightful)

Deorus (811828) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339908)

I think it's way too soon to see Apple as defeated when just yesterday there was an article about some third company suing everyone except Apple for patent infringement. This is far from over, and the way I see it, Apple will use their deep pockets to drown smaller vendors until there's no option left but to compensate Apple with their assets and declare bankruptcy. Don't forget that currently Apple has enough live money to buy 2 Nokias or 7 Samsungs.

What exactly costitutes an expert? (5, Insightful)

bogaboga (793279) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339766)

The linked article refers to Florian Mueller as a patent expert. What exactly constitutes one?

When it comes to this particular case, this "expert" predicted Motorola's doom by fronting the ideas that it (Motorola), was suing over what he termed as "standards essential" and therefore "weak" attack or defense patents.

No wonder he sounds humbled by this development on his blog.

Re:What exactly costitutes an expert? (4, Interesting)

exomondo (1725132) | more than 2 years ago | (#38339870)

The linked article refers to Florian Mueller as a patent expert. What exactly constitutes one?

Whoever wrote it likely made the mistake of searching for antonyms rather than synonyms when searching for an alternative word to 'incompetent' to follow 'patent'. Florian Mueller is the bumbling idiot that has made countless idiotic assertions (most disproved with just a cursory look at the evidence) to drive hits on his blog, he's the JarJar Binks of the patent world.

Re:What exactly costitutes an expert? (1)

stevesliva (648202) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340042)

The linked article refers to Florian Mueller as a patent expert. What exactly constitutes one?

When it comes to this particular case, this "expert" predicted Motorola's doom by fronting the ideas that it (Motorola), was suing over what he termed as "standards essential" and therefore "weak" attack or defense patents.

No wonder he sounds humbled by this development on his blog.

See signature below.

Re:What exactly costitutes an expert? (3, Informative)

Mark19960 (539856) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340198)

Florian Mueller is not an expert.
He is a troll, plain and simple.

Burn that name into memory and as soon as you hit that name in any article stop reading it.
That is all I can suggest to avoid permanent brain damage from reading his blathering.

The ultimate outcome (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38339998)

Lawyers+patents=Cluster fuck. The only winner is chaos.

The interesting part (2)

Luckyo (1726890) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340046)

This is patent MAD at work. Funnily, or sadly even insanity like this will not diminish support from big companies to tightening patent rules and laws even further.

Why? Because as long as patents can be enforced like this even against big names, no one small or new will ever be able to even try to enter the same business to compete.

Realy who gives a shit (2)

slackware 3.6 (2524328) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340090)

My Android is awesome . Buddy's iPhone is awesome. Guy at work says his Storm2 is way better than my old Storm. They are all so close with minor differences that people chose to harp on. Get real, you love them cause they cost more than a decent laptop and you need to justify it to your self.

EASTERN DISTRICT ?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38340154)

Then that explains it !!

Put that in your Bundesloch and it essen my moeglicher frau !!

In other words (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 2 years ago | (#38340274)

European patent law is just as screwed up as American patent law.

And Australian patent law is just as screwed up as European patent law.

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