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Samsung Galaxy Nexus Ban Overturned

Soulskill posted about 2 years ago | from the another-day,-another-apple/samsung-ruling dept.

Patents 140

Maow writes with word that the U.S. Federal Appeals Court has reversed a sales ban on Samsung's Galaxy Nexus phone. According to the decision (PDF), "Regardless of the extent to which Apple may be injured by the sales of the Galaxy Nexus, there is not a sufficient showing that the harm flows from Samsung’s alleged infringement. ...the district court abused its discretion in enjoining the sales of the Galaxy Nexus." The ruling also said Apple didn't do a good enough job showing that the allegedly infringing features were "core" to the Nexus's operation. The case centered on what is called "unified search," a method for bringing together search results from multiple places, such as a device's internal memory and the internet at large (U.S. Patent #8,086,604). "Apple must show that consumers buy the Galaxy Nexus because it is equipped with the apparatus claimed in the ’604 patent—not because it can search in general, and not even because it has unified search."

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Laugh... (5, Insightful)

koan (80826) | about 2 years ago | (#41632501)

I saw it as Apples attempt to keep the larger screen Samsung phone from hitting the market before the iPhone5.

Re:Laugh... (5, Insightful)

Laxori666 (748529) | about 2 years ago | (#41632659)

That's certainly possible. This is what happens when you don't have free markets. It becomes profitable to divert some effort into abusing the regulatory systems instead of spending all your time and energy actually producing things.

Re:Laugh... (5, Insightful)

Synerg1y (2169962) | about 2 years ago | (#41632803)

It's not the market that's broken, but the patent system... it clearly wasn't designed for computers & technology.

Re:Laugh... (4, Insightful)

d3ac0n (715594) | about 2 years ago | (#41633107)

I don't think Laxori666 was intimating that "The Market" was broken, but rather that our regulatory systems (that would include the Patent system) have shackled it to the extent that it can be more profitable to engage in legal assaults against your competitors than to actually PRODUCE something new for sale.

Now, Apple is clearly doing both, but the fact that the legal avenue is even viable for them to bother pursuing should be of great concern to anyone wishing to see greater vibrancy and energy from the marketplace.

Re:Laugh... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41633741)

Patents are monopolies, so by definition they break the free market. In a free market, the company that made a real invention wouldn't get a monopoly on selling it, so the theory is that they wouldn't bother with the invention, or would try to keep it secret. Patents break this free market system and hopefully encourage innovation.

But you're right, the patent system is also broken, and probably isn't achieving that goal of increased innovation any more.

Re:Laugh... (3, Informative)

mk1004 (2488060) | about 2 years ago | (#41634555)

Patents may be monopolies, but how about the alternative? Companies may spend months or years and tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars to come up with some new way of doing something. Without patent protection, other companies could then quickly copy the invention, spending a fraction of the time and money, with just a small lag in time to market. What incentive would companies have to innovate? Patents, done right, should protect the inventors at least long enough for them to make back their investment in time and money, giving them the incentive to keep innovating.

Re:Laugh... (2)

englishknnigits (1568303) | about 2 years ago | (#41635221)

In theory, I actually agree with you. In practice, I completely disagree. If patents were used appropriately for truly innovated things and for a short duration (6 months to a few years at most) then it would provide a good incentive to innovate due to the large potential benefits of a short lived monopoly. The detriment of that monopoly could be offset by the societal benefits brought on by increased innovation.

The problem is that none of those things are true. Patents are granted for completely trivial things that have usually already been done before but with some irrelevant twist such as "on a mobile device." Patents last way too long and give excessive monopoly power. The theory is sound but the implementation is a catastrophe. I would rather have no patent system than have a horribly broken patent system. I have absolutely no faith, and have seen no evidence, that we will ever get it "right" so we should get rid of the whole mess.

Re:Laugh... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635275)

The point you're missing is that if it takes a significant time to invent, then it's more than a basic feature. As an example, everything Apple sued for was a trivial invention. No one begrudges Google protecting its full map data, or someone fully copying trivial pursuit. People have a problem that patents apply to common problems with common solutions.
I suggest that a complex algorithm can be protected, but not software. This could cover page rank, complex DSP algorithms, compression algorithms, but not frigging elastic banding, combined search or slide to unlock. That was horse shit and Apple was downright disgraceful for playing that hand.
Oh, to the fanboy that supported Apple's case because Samsung used a "green phone icon" (ie. like the ones that have been on phones for 29 years) - FUCK YOU!

Re:Laugh... (5, Informative)

sir-gold (949031) | about 2 years ago | (#41632891)

Re:Laugh... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41633333)

Has anyone actually put out the costs broken down by general, defensive and offensive legal fees? I would really like to see it broken down that way.

Re:Laugh... (1)

sribe (304414) | about 2 years ago | (#41633929)

Has anyone actually put out the costs broken down by general, defensive and offensive legal fees? I would really like to see it broken down that way.

By far the majority of the spending referred to was for unusually large, one-time, purchases of patent portfolios from failing companies.

Re:Laugh... (5, Informative)

sribe (304414) | about 2 years ago | (#41633917)

Last year, both Apple and Samsung (and Google) spent more on legal fees than R&D.

No, they did not. The "spending on patents" which exceeded their R&D included huge (multibillion $) one-time purchases of assets, including patent portfolios, from failing companies.

Re:Laugh... (3, Insightful)

Laxori666 (748529) | about 2 years ago | (#41634051)

How is spending billions of dollars buying patents not "legal fees"? It's certainly not R&D. For example, Google could have spent money and come up with a phone on their own (R&D), but they had to buy Motorola in order to not be sued into oblivion by the other phone makers (legal fees).

Re:Laugh... (2)

sribe (304414) | about 2 years ago | (#41634423)

How is spending billions of dollars buying patents not "legal fees"? It's certainly not R&D. For example, Google could have spent money and come up with a phone on their own (R&D), but they had to buy Motorola in order to not be sued into oblivion by the other phone makers (legal fees).

"Legal fees" is commonly understood to mean "fees paid for legal services". NOT money paid for licenses, copyrights, patents, leases, tangible property, real property, non-legal services or anything else except, you know, actual legal services.

And no, of course it's not R&D. Neither are a whole host of other things these companies spend money on, none of which magically become legal fees by virtue of not being R&D.

Re:Laugh... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635113)

People are counting them as legal fees because their only purpose is to avoid costly lawsuits.

Re:Laugh... (1)

Fjandr (66656) | about 2 years ago | (#41635103)

<snark>
Really, Google could avoid paying for any patents and just make a cellular phone?
</snark>

Buying patent portfolios is like buying a house instead of renting. Google would obtain those patents either via outright ownership, or they'd rent them. You cannot make a cellular phone which is compatible with modern networks without patent encumbrance of some sort or another.

Purchasing patent portfolios is to R&D what buying a building is to building one. If you need a building and one exists which fits your purpose, and your time is better spent in other aspects of your business than the construction of something fitting that purpose, you buy it outright. There's absolutely nothing wrong with that.

And as was said before, in no way does any of the above constitute "legal fees," even if the purpose of the acquisition is primarily to launch legal assaults backed by those patents.

Re:Laugh... (1)

parkinglot777 (2563877) | about 2 years ago | (#41633411)

This is what happens when you don't have free markets.

I am not an economist, so I am not sure what would free markets do in this case. I agree with Synerg1y's point -- the patent system is broken. So if the broken patent system exists, how would your "free markets" be?

Re:Laugh... (4, Insightful)

Rockoon (1252108) | about 2 years ago | (#41633717)

Free markets cannot exist while the government distorts them. This isnt about regulation, because regulation does not need to distort the markets.

Market distortions perpetrated by government are often characterized by government money, but that isnt the whole story. The patent system is most certainly a market distortion, which seemed like a beneficial trade-off when it was only manufacturing techniques that were being patented. Clearly its not a free market if you arent free to also do what someone else is succeeding when doing. You shouldn't be guaranteed to succeed, but you should be free to try.

The patent system, as it stands, is a gross violation of liberty. The society does not benefit when information that was naturally (going to be) public information is given exclusive use. Society only benefits in the case where what would have been trade secrets is made public through these government enforced incentives of limited exclusiveness. This kind of would-have-been-a-trade-secret patent is rare these days. Companies like Intel and Global Foundries certainly are involved in that kind of 'good' patent (not exclusively, see instruction set patents), but companies like Apple patent information that would by definition become public through the sale of millions of devices which demonstrate it.

Its about time people stood up for technological liberty. End the 'design' side of the patent system, and reform the 'utility' side of the patent system.

Re:Laugh... (5, Interesting)

makomk (752139) | about 2 years ago | (#41634667)

Free markets cannot exist, full stop. For instance, every time a companies actions have negative externalities - costs that affect others who aren't doing business with them - that distorts the market even if there's no government, because it means the free market price of their product doesn't reflect the actual cost. We see this with global warming; in fact that's one reason why libertarians are so keen on insisting that it doesn't exist despite the actual evidence. There's a related problem with (for instance) deep sea fishing called the tragedy of the commons - without government intervention the free market would wipe out fish stocks and drive fishermen into bankrupcy, despite the fact that this makes everyone else worse off.

That's before we even get into the problems with false advertising and food and drug mislabelling, and the consistent inability of the free market to deal with it, or natural monopolies and rent-seeking behaviour, or...

Re:Laugh... (2)

Laxori666 (748529) | about 2 years ago | (#41634027)

My point is that the patent system itself is what makes the market not free. A freer market would be one without the patent system.

How would that market operate? It means companies would no longer be able to make money by coming up with something and preventing other people from doing it (thus enjoying the benefits of a monopoly), but rather, to come up with something which they can make money from even if they have competition. Whenever there is competition in a free market, prices go down while quality goes up, thus consumers would benefit.

As for the argument that nobody would invent anything without patents, I find it specious. People are always willing to make money, and they will find ways to do so if you let them. All patents do in this regard is prevent people from making money because somebody else patented something. Ironically, the patent system, which is purported to promote innovation, ends up doing the exact opposite.

Re:Laugh... (2)

crachel (1970552) | about 2 years ago | (#41632661)

The Galaxy Nexus came out in November 2011. This ban that is being overturned occurred in June 2012.

True, but (4, Informative)

OrangeTide (124937) | about 2 years ago | (#41632801)

We're more interested in legal precidence than the effects on an individual product line.

Re:Laugh... (1)

MachDelta (704883) | about 2 years ago | (#41632921)

Or it was a shot across Google's bow.
If Apple really wanted to hurt Samsung alone, they would have picked the SII instead - it's very close to the same phone (admittedly, it was Samsung's "true" flagship phone as the hardware specs were the same or better). Going after the Nexus was probably nothing more than a two-birds-one-stone scenario, attacking their largest hardware competitor and their largest (only?) OS competitor (and sworn enemy) at the same time.

Re:Laugh... (1)

jlv (5619) | about 2 years ago | (#41633851)

I saw it as Apples attempt to keep the larger screen Samsung phone from hitting the market before the iPhone5.

The Galaxy Nexus has been on sale for almost a year.

Re:Laugh... (0)

jo_ham (604554) | about 2 years ago | (#41634429)

I saw it as Apples attempt to keep the larger screen Samsung phone from hitting the market before the iPhone5.

Well, then they were late in getting the ban - the Galaxy Nexus has been on sale for almost a year already.

Thank you.. (4, Insightful)

Moheeheeko (1682914) | about 2 years ago | (#41632537)

...sweet merciful logic!

Re:Thank you.. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41632985)

I know, I know, it's blasphemous and wrong, but don't worry! Friend Apple will be by to innovate the Appeals Court, correcting their faulty logic! Then the foul Green Beast will be forever slain, and all the true believers will be welcomed to iHeaven to stand by His side with His holy turtleneck! So don't despair!

Hmmm... (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41632575)

Sound like Apple owes Samsung some money for lost sales.

Re:Hmmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41633207)

They should send the bill to judge Koh.

Re:Hmmm... (1)

SternisheFan (2529412) | about 2 years ago | (#41634271)

They should send the bill to judge Koh.

Remember when she asked the Apple lawyers if they were on crack? That seemed like an inciteful comment from her at the time, so now we are hearing more and more that she's mis-handled the case. All that money that's gotten wasted over this patent crap... Everytime I read about another twist in this ridiculous case, my head just shakes left and right several times. Such a complete waste of many resources all around. At least those poor lawyers won't go hungry.

Re:Hmmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41634601)

Hmm... Did you mean to use inciteful? Or, did you mean insightful? Both work, but the meanings are vastly different...

Seams Apple now owes Samsung A chunck of cash.. (4, Interesting)

FirstOne (193462) | about 2 years ago | (#41632645)

I.E.. Apple forfeits some of the bond they posted for PI, up to 96.5 million dollars, maybe more.

This ruling can also put a serious dent in the Apple's victory over Samsung SJ court. The same reasoning will overturn that verdict as well. (Apple didn't show they were damaged by Customers seeking out those specific patented features.)

Additionally those features represent a tiny fraction of the overall value of the phones.. (big hit to damages award),

Re:Seams Apple now owes Samsung A chunck of cash.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41633301)

Too bad, it is not a significant percentage of Apple's war chest.

Would love to see Apple go the way of SCO. They really have exhausted all the good will they had with me.

Re:Seams Apple now owes Samsung A chunck of cash.. (1)

Dishevel (1105119) | about 2 years ago | (#41634309)

I do not like Apple. Some people do though, so I would like them to survive.
Competition is good.
Apple just needs to fucking build shit for their fanboys and leave the rest of the world alone.

Up Next.... (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41632707)

Court overturns 1 billion judgement against Samsung.

April fools? (0, Flamebait)

firesyde424 (1127527) | about 2 years ago | (#41632727)

A logical ruling on a patent case? Really? *looks around, bewildered* Is this America??

I assume this particular judge is aware that we don't live in a free country anymore and that the role of government is to listen to whoever has the most money. So what happened? Did Apple forget to send the six figure "judicial consultation fee?"

trade with asia? (-1, Troll)

OrangeTide (124937) | about 2 years ago | (#41632819)

Apple is an American company, so to appease our trade partners in Asia we must rule against them to prove our "fairness".

Re:trade with asia? (1)

MachDelta (704883) | about 2 years ago | (#41632965)

Apple phones, Samsung phones... ALL MADE IN TAIWA... uh, CHINA!

Re:trade with asia? (2)

Mike Buddha (10734) | about 2 years ago | (#41633549)

I hadn't realized that Korea was in Taiwan. Hmm...

Re:trade with asia? (2)

OrangeTide (124937) | about 2 years ago | (#41634025)

American Geography.

Re:trade with asia? (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41634377)

I hadn't realized that Korea was in Taiwan. Hmm...

It certainly is, according to my iPhone 5.

Re:logical ruling on a patent case (5, Insightful)

TaoPhoenix (980487) | about 2 years ago | (#41632833)

Not just any old logical ruling, but I speculate it holds the seeds for slowing down patent madness. Borrowing from another of my posts elsewhere:

"It said the district court in California, which had issued the ban in June, had "abused its discretion in entering an injunction"."

Which, in Court Speak, is pretty bad. "Abused Discretion" is basically what we were all saying in Less-Safe-For-Work terms.

There's also an awesome phrase to keep an eye on. "Apple must show that consumers buy the Galaxy Nexus because it is equipped with the apparatus claimed in the â(TM)604 patentâ"not because it can search in general, and not even because it has unified search."

So we have the BAREST beginnings of how to slow down patent abuse:
1. SomePhone has "patented technology to play Angry Birds with live birds using geo-sensors and accelerometer tech in hunting season" or something. Let's even say something like that is innovating, and not obvious - shake your phone at a bird and it falls out of the sky!?

OtherCorp says that the tech infringes on their other patent which got there first, *and then tries to ban sales of the whole phone.*I think this court case is saying that the grumpy corp has to prove that consumers basically stood in the mall and picked which phone to buy based on exactly that tech and no more. "Hmm, this one has a better screen, better sound, better camera, better maps, better music interface, Android store." "Yeah, but mine kills pigeons in the park." "Ooh, I'm sold, I'll do that!"

Re:logical ruling on a patent case (1)

berashith (222128) | about 2 years ago | (#41633187)

can i get one of these that can take out the squirrels in my garden and the neighbors dog that shits in my yard. That one feature would out rank everything else for me.

Re:logical ruling on a patent case (1)

rbrausse (1319883) | about 2 years ago | (#41633475)

can i get one of these that can take out the squirrels in my garden and the neighbors dog that shits in my yard.

Cell Guns? [snopes.com]

Re:logical ruling on a patent case (4, Informative)

CowTipperGore (1081903) | about 2 years ago | (#41634797)

Perhaps more interesting was the court's commentary on Apple's practice of using the courts to completely block competitors from the market, saying that it is necessary to determine if the claims of harm are relevant or "...whether the patentee seeks to leverage its patent for competitive gain beyond that which the inventive contribution and value of the patent warrant." In other words, you may still be entitled to damages but you are not allowed to use one minor feature to completely eliminate your competition.

Re:logical ruling on a patent case (1)

cheesecake23 (1110663) | about 2 years ago | (#41635203)

1. SomePhone has "patented technology to play Angry Birds with live birds using geo-sensors and accelerometer tech in hunting season"

Seriously, you gotta pitch that at the Kickstarter crowd. Best app idea ever.

Lucy Koh, look around... (3, Insightful)

jkrise (535370) | about 2 years ago | (#41632747)

unless you overturn the idiotic jury verdict, the entire World is going to laugh at you.

Re:Lucy Koh, look around... (2)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | about 2 years ago | (#41632933)

Lucy Koh got bitch-slapped on this one. Let us hope that it is the start of a trend.

"Before PROST, MOORE, and REYNA, Circuit Judges. "

Thank you and those who had the wisdom to select you to the court.

Re:Lucy Koh, look around... (1)

Diss Champ (934796) | about 2 years ago | (#41634459)

"SHARON PROST, Circuit Judge
SHARON PROST was appointed by President George W. Bush in 2001."
http://www.cafc.uscourts.gov/judges/sharon-prost-circuit-judge.html [uscourts.gov]

"KIMBERLY A. MOORE, Circuit Judge
KIMBERLY A. MOORE was appointed by President George W. Bush in 2006."
http://www.cafc.uscourts.gov/judges/kimberly-a-moore-circuit-judge.html [uscourts.gov]

"JIMMIE V. REYNA, Circuit Judge
Jimmie V. Reyna was appointed to the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit by President Barack Obama in 2011."
http://www.cafc.uscourts.gov/judges/jimmie-v-reyna-circuit-judge.html [uscourts.gov]

Re:Lucy Koh, look around... (1)

sribe (304414) | about 2 years ago | (#41633949)

unless you overturn the idiotic jury verdict, the entire World is going to laugh at you.

Not the same case; this is a preliminary injunction from claims that are not scheduled for trial for a very long time yet to come.

Hooray, someone gets it (5, Interesting)

sandytaru (1158959) | about 2 years ago | (#41632781)

People don't always buy phones because of specific features any more - they buy it because of the brand and because it is the latest model from that brand. People will buy the Nexus instead of the Apple regardless of the specifics of its search functions.

Re:Hooray, someone gets it (1, Interesting)

OrangeTide (124937) | about 2 years ago | (#41632843)

If the Nexus didn't have any features, then it would cease being a popular brand. That's kind of the point that Apple was trying to make.

Re:Hooray, someone gets it (2)

Todd Knarr (15451) | about 2 years ago | (#41633063)

Yes, but if this particular feature were left out, people would still buy it. The Appeals Court noted this clearly in their order:

The causal nexus requirement is not satisfied simply because removing an allegedly infringing component would leave a particular feature, application, or device less valued or inoperable. A laptop computer, for example, will not work (or work long enough) without a battery, cooling fan, or even the screws that may hold its frame together, and its value would be accordingly depreciated should those components be removed. That does not mean, however, that every such component is "core" to the operation of the machine, let alone that each component is the driver of consumer demand.

Apple's patented feature certainly adds value, but it's lack isn't a deal-breaker for most consumers.

Re:Hooray, someone gets it (1)

amRadioHed (463061) | about 2 years ago | (#41633585)

Yeah, and this particular search feature is one that I have barely used in years of having an Android phone. To ban sales of the phone because of it is patently absurd.

Re:Hooray, someone gets it (1)

jtownatpunk.net (245670) | about 2 years ago | (#41634281)

I see what you did there!

Re:Hooray, someone gets it (1)

CowTipperGore (1081903) | about 2 years ago | (#41634819)

Which is exactly what the court said, wondering "...whether the patentee seeks to leverage its patent for competitive gain beyond that which the inventive contribution and value of the patent warrant."

Re:Hooray, someone gets it (1)

MozeeToby (1163751) | about 2 years ago | (#41633093)

There's a difference between "You're infringing and will be punished" and "You're infringing and cannot sell the phone until we get this worked out". Blocking sales should be the nuclear option, only used in the most blatant violations of the most key features, which is what this judge is saying. Violating this patent to marginally improve the user experience on a device is not sufficient to run a company into the ground.

Re:Hooray, someone gets it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41633599)

Yes, if it was a brick, then people would not consider it when shopping for a smartphone. Since it is not a brick, but rather a feature-filled smartphone, what, precisely, is your point?

Re:Hooray, someone gets it (1)

CosaNostra Pizza Inc (1299163) | about 2 years ago | (#41633633)

Nexus isn't a brand...You don't get it. Parent poster doesn't get it either. Read my above post.

Re:Hooray, someone gets it (1)

OrangeTide (124937) | about 2 years ago | (#41634013)

Nexus is a brand. I worked on the Nexus 7 tablet. I guess you don't know what a brand is.

Re:Hooray, someone gets it (1)

Dishevel (1105119) | about 2 years ago | (#41634363)

Nexus is very "Brandish" to those of us who buy based on "Nexus"
Nexus means that I am dealing with an unlocked, root capable phone running base Android software.
I like Nexus s. Some of them I might skip because of the manufacturer but I will not be buying another non Nexus phone.

Re:Hooray, someone gets it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41633237)

Cmon.. I bought one ONLY because it had a rectangular aspect ratio and rounded corners!

Re:Hooray, someone gets it (2)

DickBreath (207180) | about 2 years ago | (#41633437)

> People don't always buy phones because of specific features any more

Actually, in some sense that is not true. When buying phones, it must be Android. That's what I'm looking for. I'll compare amongst Android phones for everything else, as you suggest. Brand. Features. Price. Size. Color. Style. Keyboard. Cameras.

But not running Android is a deal killer. I buy the phone because it runs Android. Because it syncs with Google services, runs Google maps, etc. I buy it because I can get source code. Because I don't have to pay money, sign a draconian NDA and use a specific platform in order to develop. Eclipse and other tools run on Linux and Windows (maybe even Mac).

And before an iFanboy complains, I would point out that they do the same. They buy the iDevice specifically because it is from Apple, runs iOS, is high priced, takes away their freedom, etc etc.

Re:Hooray, someone gets it (1)

jo_ham (604554) | about 2 years ago | (#41634561)

And before an iFanboy complains, I would point out that they do the same. They buy the iDevice specifically because it is from Apple, runs iOS, is high priced, takes away their freedom, etc etc.

Why would they complain? Those are all perfectly valid positions to take. Your choice of platform and the criteria that are involved in its selection have nothing to do with anyone else - I just with that certain Android "fans" would appreciate that people who don't ultimately choose Android also have equally valid reasons and criteria.

I didn't go for an iPhone because it "is high priced, takes away their freedom, etc etc." - that's simply a nonsense statement. My iPhone (in fact, my last two iPhones) have been free, and I'm not on a subsidised phone plan, and I didn't decide "oh, I want a phone that removes my freedom". iOS is certainly more curated than Android, but that does not mean I chose it because of that - I chose it because it does everything I want it to do and works well *for me*. Other people might find that the inability to sideload apps is something they can't live with, and good for them if that's something that is important to you, the iPhone is not for you, but that does not mean people who do not need that feature are somehow having their freedom "taken away". It's a phone, not a career or mortgage. If I find that I run into something that I can't do that I want to then I'll look at other options.

It seems fashionable right now to bash anyone who didn't choose Android as someone who either a) was clueless about their options and "obviously" chose the inferior option or b) somehow set their criteria to "I want to be overcharged and to have my freedom removed" as you just suggested.

Telling an iOS user that they selected the iPhone because they wanted to overpay and be restricted is like telling an Android user they they chose an Android handset because they love fragmentation and being trapped on 2.2 because there's no carrier or manufacturer update on locked handsets. Neither situation is true and you know it.

Re:Hooray, someone gets it (2)

CosaNostra Pizza Inc (1299163) | about 2 years ago | (#41633617)

The unique "feature" of the Nexus line is that it is comprised of stock Android phones. The line is not unique to Samsung, as the first Nexus was built by HTC, Nexus S and Galaxy Nexus built by Samsung, Nexus 7 tablet built by Asus. It isn't brand specific...the line is developed by Google in conjuntion with the aformentioned manufacturers. BTW, I have a Galaxy Nexus and brand had nothing to do with my purchase. I wanted a pure Android phone. Galaxy Nexus is one of the few phones recommended by the Android Open Source Project for Android software development.

Re:Hooray, someone gets it (1)

CowTipperGore (1081903) | about 2 years ago | (#41634839)

And this makes the case all the more intriguing. As the court pointed out, the feature in question (Quick Search Box) is a part of Android, not something provided specifically by Samsung, and it has existed for several years longer than this particular phone.

Re:Hooray, someone gets it (1)

Kartu (1490911) | about 2 years ago | (#41634641)

This is only true in case of Apple's customers. There is no such thing as "the last model" for pretty much any company, besides Apple, there is a bunch of different models with their own "latest": latest "Nexus", latest "Galaxy", latest "Note"...

Does this mean unified search is coming back? (2)

h4rr4r (612664) | about 2 years ago | (#41632787)

Will the next software update for the GN and GS3 then reactivate unified search?

Re:Does this mean unified search is coming back? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41632961)

Not necessarily.

In a nutshell this is saying the Galaxy Nexus phone should not have been banned because of its infringement, unless Apple can prove its infringement was a primary purchasing point for consumers (it's not).

It does nothing to say that the implementation is non-infringing or that Apple's patent is null.

what about the lost sales? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41632799)

The problem is that #Apple was awarded an injunction that prevented #Samsung from selling the #GalaxyNexus for some time, which inevitably cost them sales. It seems to me that in the interest of fairness, #Apple should now be liable for this loss?

Re:what about the lost sales? (2)

h4rr4r (612664) | about 2 years ago | (#41632849)

This is slashdot not twitter you dolt.

Re:what about the lost sales? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41632859)

Who in their right mind would want to willingly buy a SamDung product is beyond me...

Re:what about the lost sales? (3, Insightful)

h4rr4r (612664) | about 2 years ago | (#41632925)

Well better not tell the iFans, about half that thing comes from Samsung.

Re:what about the lost sales? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41633685)

Who in their right mind would want to willingly buy a SamDung product is beyond me...

Oh look...another iSheep from the church of Crapple is dissing a non-Crapple phone.

Re:what about the lost sales? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41633707)

I believe some of the iPhone components come from "SamDung"...as you put it.

Re:what about the lost sales? (1)

Kenja (541830) | about 2 years ago | (#41632899)

I seem to recall sales going up, not down, as a result of the trial.

Re:what about the lost sales? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41633005)

I seem to recall sales going up, not down, as a result of the trial.

It may be true that #galaxynexus sales went up, but what evidence do you have that it was because of the trail? It seems more likely that without the ban, sales would have been even higher, since the ban impacted availability in key markets.

Seems like a clear case of correlation not being causation if there ever was one.

Re:what about the lost sales? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41633721)

#imafuckingmoron

Re:what about the lost sales? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41633863)

Ugh. Every time I see someone shove hash-tags in the middle of what they're saying, I can't help but feel like every time one comes up, it's as if the poster just stopped talking, knocked me to the ground, jumped up and down on my chest, and just started screaming "LOOK AT ME! LOOK AT ME! I'M PART OF A TRENDING TERM! EVERYONE LOOK AT ME RIGHT NOW!". For each tag.

If the tags are all put at the end of the post, that looks more like trash piling up in a lazy bachelor's apartment, but at least that doesn't beat me over the head as much with desperate attention-whoring.

Re:what about the lost sales? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41634703)

Have you thought about seeking professional psychological help, if you are that bothered by the increasingly ubiquitous use of hashtags? They're even in mainstream media reporting now. If they bother you this much, that might be a sign of some other problem that it would be better for you to get to the root of.

Google desktop did it in 2004 (5, Informative)

sir-gold (949031) | about 2 years ago | (#41632827)

Version 1 of google desktop was released a month BEFORE this patent was even filed. I don't remember if version 1 had unified search, but the later versions definitely did.

Is the US patent office pulling a Velvan Hogan and disregarding prior art just because it doesn't run on the same hardware? Or do they just automatically approve EVERY apple patent without research?

Re:Google desktop did it in 2004 (2)

suutar (1860506) | about 2 years ago | (#41632905)

more the latter, I think. They're overworked and understaffed and their directive seems to be "pass it unless there's an obvious an egregious problem and let the courts sort out anything else".

Re:Google desktop did it in 2004 (3, Insightful)

Daniel_Staal (609844) | about 2 years ago | (#41632969)

And the court's default position is 'if the patent office passed it it's probably valid'.

Re:Google desktop did it in 2004 (1)

timeOday (582209) | about 2 years ago | (#41633143)

They're overworked and understaffed and their directive seems to be "pass it unless there's an obvious an egregious problem and let the courts sort out anything else".

Well, the alternative is to re-create a new court within the Patent Office, which doesn't make a lot of sense. Making a judgment on whether something is patent-worthy is an inherently messy process, and making authoritative judgments about messy issues is what courts are for.

Re:Google desktop did it in 2004 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41633495)

If They're overworked and understaffed , hire more staff and raise the patent fee. It's will be less fee than regular tribunal fee.

Re:Google desktop did it in 2004 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41633091)

Regardless, under the laws in 2004, you have one year from the date of invention (well, publication of invention) to file your patent-- even if Google Desktop existed prior, if Apple invented it first the patent could be valid.

Not saying it *is* valid, just that it could be.

Re:Google desktop did it in 2004 (4, Informative)

sir-gold (949031) | about 2 years ago | (#41633117)

I just looked into the 604 patent some more, it was filed in 2004, but was rejected that year and another 8 times over the following years. It wasn't approved until 2011, yet it somehow still has an effective date of 2004.

So it's not that the USPTO grants every apple patent, it's just that if you submit the same patent 10 times over the span of 5 years, they will eventually approve it, even if they shouldn't.

Re:Google desktop did it in 2004 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41633945)

I wonder what changed. Did USPTO get a "donation"?

Re:Google desktop did it in 2004 (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | about 2 years ago | (#41634253)

Seriously? That is way messed up. I pay for that patent office with taxes, I assume. I don't like it that a company can spam them, essentially, with patent applications until they get one through (presumably had an inexperienced reviewer or something). Blech. And this isn't anti-Apple, this is anti-anyone-that-does-this :P

Re:Google desktop did it in 2004 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41634317)

Doesn't really matter - PalmOS had unified search before we ever heard of Google. It was a core feature when I got my first Palm III, launched in 1998. Apparently they renamed it a couple of times since, but it's not exactly a novel concept.

Sounds like... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41632963)

something that has long been done.

interesting... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41633067)

If you try to look at the Images for the patent, it requires Apple Quicktime.

Compensation (2)

ByteSlicer (735276) | about 2 years ago | (#41633307)

So can Samsung now ask for compensation for the lost sales due to the ban? (Honest question to any legal person here that might know. It seems obvious and only fair to me, but justice is seldomly fair lately).

Re:Compensation (1)

sribe (304414) | about 2 years ago | (#41633973)

So can Samsung now ask for compensation for the lost sales due to the ban? (Honest question to any legal person here that might know. It seems obvious and only fair to me, but justice is seldomly fair lately).

Apple was required to put up a bond before the injunction went into effect, for exactly this reason. That money is not going to be released to Samsung at this time, because the matter is not yet settled. This is a preliminary injunction on claims that have not yet gone to trial--it is not related to the recent verdict Apple won against Samsung.

Re:Compensation (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41634029)

Not that it matters. No compensation can account for the market share lost by making the product unavailable during the critical Apple launch window, not to mention the sullying of Samsung's reputation. This was a brilliant market strategy, and well worth the money Apple will spend "compensating" Samsung.

Re:Compensation (1)

ThatsMyNick (2004126) | about 2 years ago | (#41634185)

I suppose they can sue the district court for abusing their discretion. But I dont think it has tried before, and I would expect the district court and the judges to have some immunity from prosecution.

Re:Compensation (1)

tobiasly (524456) | about 2 years ago | (#41634241)

So can Samsung now ask for compensation for the lost sales due to the ban? (Honest question to any legal person here that might know. It seems obvious and only fair to me, but justice is seldomly fair lately).

Yes, but it was only actually banned for a few days. The appeals court stayed the injunction shortly after it was granted.

Re:Compensation (1)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | about 2 years ago | (#41634257)

It pisses me off because I know that a lot of potential accessories were held back from the market because the Nexus was banned.

It's my one complaint about this phone atm, that there are so few things in the way of mounts, etc.

(It's also why Apple's decision to go with thunderbolt is damned annoying. Nothing like seeing speakermounts which could be standard split into two 'camps' on store shelves)

A good example (3, Interesting)

argStyopa (232550) | about 2 years ago | (#41634135)

A very good example of how our legal system would be improved by a 3-strikes rule.

If a court case is overturned on appeals, clearly, the lower court not only didn't do their job but in fact caused a 3-fold increase in the burden borne by the court system: the original court trial, the appellate hearing, and the subsequent case.

I've always wondered why, when an appellate court overrules a judge, there's no consequence for the judge. Simply put - if a judge is overturned 3 times, he obviously shouldn't be a judge any longer.

(If judges are particularly rare or dear, and we need them, implement some sort of "3rd strike = 25% pay cut for 1 year" rule to significantly punish these individuals that are so critical to our legal system.

Re:A good example (2)

FirstOne (193462) | about 2 years ago | (#41634359)

Frequently overturned judicial rulings will hurt that judge's chances for advancement.. If a complaint is filed, the chief judge(for the district) will assign it to an appointed judicial committee for review.. That proceeding can result in private or public censure..

The Chief judge can also place that judge on low profile case list for an indefinite period.

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