Why Apple’s Win over Samsung Is Ultimately Good News for Consumers

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Lee Jae Won / Reuters

Samsung's Galaxy Tab and an Apple iPad

When I am in Hong Kong or Beijing, people often accost me on street corners trying to sell me “copy watches” like fake Rolexes. In fact, one of the funniest encounters I have had was at the Great Wall of China, where a guy in a trench coat chased me down a street. When he opened up his coat, it was full of fake watches.

On just about every street corner in Hong Kong there are carts full of fake Gucci, YSL, and Burberry bags being peddled to anyone who is willing buy them. New Yorkers are familiar with this scene, as fake bags show up on street corners there too. The last time I was in Beijing, someone even tried to sell me a knockoff iPhone. This blatant copying of products, also known as counterfeiting, is bad news for the product makers, and in the end hurts consumers, since they get inferior products that are a waste of their money.

Much of the reason Apple filed the lawsuit against Samsung lies in the idea that Samsung copied the iPhone and its software, instead of innovating on its own and creating new products that could fairly compete in the marketplace. And the San Jose jury’s finding that Samsung did indeed violate Apple’s patents as well as copy some of Apple’s software reinforces this issue of companies innovating instead of copying in order to create competitive products.

(MORE: Verdict Reached in Epic Apple-vs.-Samsung Patent Case)

I believe that Samsung “copied” Apple’s products in a move of desperation. Although the company had been working on smart phones of its own, it was shocked to see the original iPhone and the impact it had on the overall smart-phone marketplace. So it rushed to market a competing product that borrowed a lot from Apple in order to not lose ground in the market it had intended to lead. Or in essence, Samsung wanted to ride Apple’s coattails and momentum in order to get some of the smart-phone action for itself as a fast follower.

The end result of this suit should be that Samsung and any others wanting to play in the smart-phone market will innovate instead of copy, which would mean that consumers could expect more creative devices in the future. Samsung’s claim that its loss in the suit will only stifle competition is incorrect. In the world of technology, the opportunity to invent, innovate and create new hardware and software from scratch is more than viable. And should companies bump up against patents when creating new devices, they have the option to license those patents when possible. But to just plain copy, as the Apple jury found, is wrong.

Microsoft knew that creating icons like the ones found in Apple’s iOS devices would be copying, so it created a tiling motif that spans its smart phones, Xbox and computing products. The company did this even though some of its patents were being used in Android and licensed these technologies to many vendors using Android in their devices. This reinforces the fact that there are ways to create a navigational UI without copying Apple.

However, the heart of this suit goes back to something Steve Jobs told his biographer, Walter Isaacson. Jobs believed that Google’s Android software was a clear rip-off of iPhone software and vowed to “go thermonuclear” on Google and make it clear that Apple was the true innovator. Well, consider the bomb dropped.

To understand Jobs’ anger and dismay with Google, you need to understand one very important thing from Apple’s past. During the period when Apple was developing the iPhone, Eric Schmidt, the CEO of Google at the time, was on Apple’s board of directors. There’s no question in my mind that Schmidt pretty much went to school on smart phones and their operating systems while serving on the board, and I would not be surprised if he used that information to help Google guide its own efforts in this area. As far as I can tell, Schmidt did not inform Jobs of Google’s decision to develop Android and compete with Apple during this time, and I am sure Jobs felt he was stabbed in the back because of this.

The fact that Android started surpassing the iPhone in smart-phone market share only added to Jobs’ anger, and all of this was at the heart of his declaration of war on Android. The money Apple spends on legal fees is a drop in the bucket to the company, given its $120 billion–plus cash in the bank and the fact that profits rise more and more as consumers continue to buy Apple products. But this win does not take the sting out of the fact that Android represents about 54% of the smart-phone market and is a serious competitor to Apple.

Going after Google would have been more difficult, so Apple chose the most high-profile Android licensee to sue instead. In a sense, Samsung served as the whipping boy for Apple’s Android anger. And this may not be the last lawsuit that Apple has in its arsenal when it comes to trying to protect its intellectual property; it may go after other Android licensees too.

Even with its Android battle, the Samsung suit has a lot of merit for Apple in the long run. It served to keep Samsung on the run. In fact, Samsung is already on path to not copy Apple in the future and will try to create a different level of distinctiveness in future products. And it has put the fear of Apple’s legal wrath in other competitors that copy instead of innovate.

(MORE: How Apple Got What It Wanted Before the Trial Was Even Over)

Interestingly, if Apple should agree to license any of its patents to Android smart-phone vendors in the future, that would only add to its financial coffers, since it would get a piece of the action from Android smart phones. This could take a bit of the sting out of Apple’s Android anger.

But consumers, ultimately, should be the big winners here. In the tech world, innovation should be the driving force behind all products shipped. Instead of stifling competition, this case should spur more creativity and give consumers an even broader range of innovative products to choose from in the future.

Bajarin is the president of Creative Strategies Inc., a technology-industry analysis and market-intelligence firm in Silicon Valley. He contributes to Big Picture, an opinion column that appears every Monday on Techland.

133 comments
JamesE.Burkett
JamesE.Burkett

Just to let you know, this "article" is complete garbage, written by a fanboy for fanboys to tweak off over their Shiny Magic Apple's "victory". This is no victory for Apple- Not only did it gain Apple TONS of bad press, but the verdict is going to be overturned when it gets to Washington anyway! Double fail!

Filip Løkkegaard Holm
Filip Løkkegaard Holm

"I believe that Samsung “copied” Apple’s products in a move of desperation."Hold on a second and take a breath. When you've taken that breath, take off your Apple goggles and then polish them. When you put them on again, you'll realise that the person you were looking at is no longer as hot as they seemed to be. But never mind that, because you are writing this article with a clear bias. An Apple bias. In fact, I'd say you probably never bought any other product in your life, except Apple.Ah, a bit extreme. Regardless, Apple isn't original. No one is original. To *even assume Apple is more original the that last* is to be as naive as a newborn baby. Please protect your behind when a stranger asks you to bend over and get the soap.Have a nice day.

Guest
Guest

First of all, it pains to me read something so ridiculous on TIME.

Second, you start talking about how in the East, small companies are producing

knock-off counterfeit products to make a profit. The fact that you only focus

this issue being present in the East alarms me as I have seen it in Europe and

in the States. These products; watches, hand-bags and jewelry are fashion

accessories. You go off topic before you can even make a coherent argument. As

you know from business innovation, Apple is a first-mover and Samsung, HTC, ACER

and Asus are second-mover. The way second movers gain any competitive advantage

is by enhancing the first-movers produce, also known as progressive innovation.

It’s not copying! If Samsung had launched the tablet under the iPad name and

sold it from trench coats on the Great Wall, then you would be correct. I also

find it hilarious how you mention Steve Job’s concerns with Google. In 1996 he

said, “Picasso had a saying, good artists copy, great articles steal.” Just by

that you know that Steve Jobs has stabbed many companies in the back to get him

to where he is today.

Lastly, I fail to see how this is in any way good news for

consumer, unless you are mistaking consumers for Apple. Consumers are the losers

here, Android tablet UI offers widgets, flash, proper multitasking, removable

storage, direct file transfer etc. These small but unique to Android features

are what the consumers will be hindered from using. And for some absurd reason

you believe that consumers are the winners here. I honestly believe you must

read a book about innovation. The

more competition and products there are in a certain market, the more

innovation there will be as each company wants to take the lead. Therefore, I

fail to see your point. What you ultimately are suggesting that Apple should be

the only company in the smart-phone market. Thus, they don’t have a reason to

innovate and can enjoy all the profits while consumer are stuck with the same

product for an eternity to come. Enlighten us as to why you think consumers are

the true winner.

The fact of the matter is that all

these companies thrive on each other. Each company takes the idea from another

and enhances what the previous has created. This is progressive innovation and

it is a type of innovation, not copying. Ultimately good for consumers.

P.S iOS copied Android’s notification

bar.

Guest
Guest

First of all, it pains to me read something so ridiculous on TIME.

Second, you start talking about how in the East, small companies are producing

knock-off counterfeit products to make a profit. The fact that you only focus

this issue being present in the East alarms me as I have seen it in Europe and

in the States. These products; watches, hand-bags and jewelry are fashion

accessories. You go off topic before you can even make a coherent argument. As

you know from business innovation, Apple is a first-mover and Samsung, HTC, ACER

and Asus are second-mover. The way second movers gain any competitive advantage

is by enhancing the first-movers produce, also known as progressive innovation.

It’s not copying! If Samsung had launched the tablet under the iPad name and

sold it from trench coats on the Great Wall, then you would be correct. I also

find it hilarious how you mention Steve Job’s concerns with Google. In 1996 he

said, “Picasso had a saying, good artists copy, great articles steal.” Just by

that you know that Steve Jobs has stabbed many companies in the back to get him

to where he is today.

Lastly, I fail to see how this is in any way good news for

consumer, unless you are mistaking consumers for Apple. Consumers are the losers

here, Android tablet UI offers widgets, flash, proper multitasking, removable

storage, direct file transfer etc. These small but unique to Android features

are what the consumers will be hindered from using. And for some absurd reason

you believe that consumers are the winners here. I honestly believe you must

read a book about innovation. The

more competition and products there are in a certain market, the more

innovation there will be as each company wants to take the lead. Therefore, I

fail to see your point. What you ultimately are suggesting that Apple should be

the only company in the smart-phone market. Thus, they don’t have a reason to

innovate and can enjoy all the profits while consumer are stuck with the same

product for an eternity to come. Enlighten us as to why you think consumers are

the true winner.

The fact of the matter is that all

these companies thrive on each other. Each company takes the idea from another

and enhances what the previous has created. This is progressive innovation and

it is a type of innovation, not copying. Ultimately good for consumers.

P.S iOS copied Android’s notification

bar.

Guest
Guest

First of all, it pains to me read something so ridiculous on TIME.

Second, you start talking about how in the East, small companies are producing

knock-off counterfeit products to make a profit. The fact that you only focus

this issue being present in the East alarms me as I have seen it in Europe and

in the States. These products; watches, hand-bags and jewelry are fashion

accessories. You go off topic before you can even make a coherent argument. As

you know from business innovation, Apple is a first-mover and Samsung, HTC, ACER

and Asus are second-mover. The way second movers gain any competitive advantage

is by enhancing the first-movers produce, also known as progressive innovation.

It’s not copying! If Samsung had launched the tablet under the iPad name and

sold it from trench coats on the Great Wall, then you would be correct. I also

find it hilarious how you mention Steve Job’s concerns with Google. In 1996 he

said, “Picasso had a saying, good artists copy, great articles steal.” Just by

that you know that Steve Jobs has stabbed many companies in the back to get him

to where he is today.

Lastly, I fail to see how this is in any way good news for

consumer, unless you are mistaking consumers for Apple. Consumers are the losers

here, Android tablet UI offers widgets, flash, proper multitasking, removable

storage, direct file transfer etc. These small but unique to Android features

are what the consumers will be hindered from using. And for some absurd reason

you believe that consumers are the winners here. I honestly believe you must

read a book about innovation. The

more competition and products there are in a certain market, the more

innovation there will be as each company wants to take the lead. Therefore, I

fail to see your point. What you ultimately are suggesting that Apple should be

the only company in the smart-phone market. Thus, they don’t have a reason to

innovate and can enjoy all the profits while consumer are stuck with the same

product for an eternity to come. Enlighten us as to why you think consumers are

the true winner.

The fact of the matter is that all

these companies thrive on each other. Each company takes the idea from another

and enhances what the previous has created. This is progressive innovation and

it is a type of innovation, not copying. Ultimately good for consumers.

P.S iOS copied Android’s notification

bar.

Noel Ishta Paz
Noel Ishta Paz

Word. I have been a Mac User for a long time Apple II and the first generation Mac all the way to Sandy Bridge MBP but no iPhone or iPad. But I have been burned with them on my warranty claims and the recent greediness really turned me off. I work in high tech and do sOC design. Apple really influenced the patent courts and looks like a kangaroo court to me.

Noel Ishta Paz
Noel Ishta Paz

Really!  Android copied iPhone?. iPhone really copied the old WinCE interface which is really the first smart phone even if it failed to be dominant. Good luck on Apple getting a piece of the Android pie. If Apples get's too greedy it will be the start of their own demise.  

Tony Te
Tony Te

"...good for consumers." Har har. He he he.

Eric Aschner
Eric Aschner

HP sells 3 times as many computers as Apple.  Android is sold on more phones than Apple and nearly as many tablets.  Google also makes 95% of it's revenue from advertising, not phones and tablets.  Apple's market cap is 2.5 times both other companies together.  Taking out Google's advertising business, that ratio is closer to 11-12 times as much.

Apple is making so much more money per unit of sale.  Yep, there is no way they are ripping anyone off...

Ahmed Hamada
Ahmed Hamada

This article is very biased towards Apple and against samsung. Winning legal battle in the US only and not in most of the other countries, even the samsung home country means that there are other factors that have to do with this. not just copyright. If i was in the judges position, definitely i would favor the home grown company, cause if there is a battle between google and apple, both will fall down and thats just another threat to the economy. well good luck to apple for legal battles, and let others take over the market. 

Hector Vazquez
Hector Vazquez

The author states at the end, "

In the tech world, innovation should be the driving force behind all products shipped. Instead of stifling competition, this case should spur more creativity and give consumers an even broader range of innovative products to choose from in the future."

Such nonsense. Competition drives innovation, not patent wins in court. The consumers are the big losers here with Apples crappy overpriced products.

Alex_Angelico
Alex_Angelico

This article represents a rather vapid attempt to spin rampant abuse of dysfunctional patent law by the marketing behemoth that is Apple, into a tale of the technological underdog getting one up on the sinister industrial moguls of East Asia. The comparison of Samsung products to knock-off fashion accessories is particularly galling. I daresay, Mr. Bajarin, that you would do well to remember that in this day-and-age of ubiquitous consumer electronics, all supply chains lead to China.

Furthermore, I put it to you that the "sting" of which you spoke pains Apple so not because they have been imitated--they haven't, not in any material sense that could be defended under well-written legislation--but because they are being outcompeted in their most precious market. As was bound to happen, people realized that Apple had "invented" a very lucrative market, and some figured out a way to outdo them in it. It's a lesson that the company learned over 20 years ago, and since then they've read a thing or three about intellectual property rights, as well.

Tim Cook and his mob of lawyers can equivocate all they want about Apple's victimization, but the truth is that where there's wealth, authentic counterfeits never outsell the things they copy. If the guys at Cupertino are the Great Innovators that they claim to be, they should be able to recapture their market share with new products, not lawsuits. If they can't, good riddance.

bend101
bend101

Comparing Samsung to guys selling fake Rolexes is silly. And let's be honest Apple wouldn't exist today if they hadn't copied Xerox PARC's work. I say this as someone who bought his first Mac in 1984.

Eric Aschner
Eric Aschner

 Not to mention, a lot of that Xerox work is stuff they just sued over.  Using small square icons as a visual representation of a program?  They didn't build that!

Randomarrow99
Randomarrow99

Tim, you Bigot,

My Bible is a rectangle with rounded corners. Is God supposed to pay Licensing Fees to the late Steve Jobs just because Jobs had a grudge against Rick Schmidt? And what would Jobs do with money in Hell anyway, buy an "Air Conditioner"? Hell is where felony thieves go and by the Jesus that is where Steve Jobs is residing!

Randomarrow99
Randomarrow99

And my Bible is a rectangle with rounded corners!

islandtechfan
islandtechfan

Lawsuit aside, Apple has fallen behind in the innovation department and is facing a real risk of losing further market share in the smart phone market from contenders with the aid of Google's Android OS. This is more than troubling news for the Tim Cook led company as more than 50% of their income is based on iPhone sales. Apple aren't quite a one-trick pony, but they're not to far away from being one either. 

Even if Apple gets its way and have all the alleged offending Samsung products banned, that would be equal to lopping off a single head from the multi headed hydra that is Android operated smartphones. I don't see them winning these suits and not come out worse off on the other side. such a shame

Gary McCray
Gary McCray

The problem here is that while certainly Samsung used some items that were first introduced by Apple (well maybe) that many of them were not the sort of things it was ever the intention to protect with Patent law in the first place.

Patents are supposed to be the exclusive territory of invention which is rather narrowly described to include only those things which embody a new and unique method for doing either something nobody had ever done before or at least materially improving on it.

Here we are talking about style and appearance choices, not invention by any sense.

Direct copying of significant forms of expression is supposed to be covered by copyright law and is considered illegal plagiarism.

Icons and case design styles can be trademarked and then could be subject to trademark law.

But here we have items that might be trademarks or possibly copyright violations being regarded as the much more severe patent violations and companies are becoming all about tying up everything they possibly can with a fog of patents, many of them inappropriate that should never have been issued.

Apple is huge and has more patent lawyers specializing in these specious patents than anyone else.

They did not beat Samsung on a level playing field and they should never have won.

This is just a message of burying the competition, not about vindication of Apple.

dc4549
dc4549

"Apple ripped off the Graphical User Interface from Xerox"-- give examples. (you can't)"pinch-to-zoom, that function has been available on touch pads"- --give examples. (you can't)

Apple ripped off its idea for the tablet in the first place! ----give examples (you can't)

To quote a song "Tell me lies, Tell me sweet little lies"To quote you friend  J. Goebbels " If you repeat a lie often enough, it becomes the truth.

keep up the good work!

Gary McCray
Gary McCray

Mouse, Icons, Window environment.

About a dozen tablet failures before Apple IPad mostly failing because of bad handwriting recognition.

Steve's words to his crew before going to Xerox PARC "Rape and Pillage".

Not dissimilar to Bill Gates comments immediately prior to acquiring Seattle computing re DOS.

No lies, although I'm sure Apple would rewrite reality if they could.

Apple is singularly most guilty of doing exactly what they spend lots of time and money suing everybody else for.

Apple was never about invention (Well after the Woz anyway), but they certainly were about style and ergonomics and marketing.

dc4549
dc4549

Mouse, Icons, Window environment.------ Made a deal with Xerox on the mouse for stock in the company (first "Mouse" invented by Tom Cranston, Fred Longstaff and Kenyon Taylor in 1952)

In 1984 the Macintosh came out (Apple Lise early 198o's,) NO other computer had that type of user interface or environment, Windows soon followed.

.

...................................

"About a dozen tablet failures before Apple iPad mostly failing because of bad handwriting recognition."--- you never heard of the Apple Newton from 1987?? They (other tablets) failed(for one reason) because Apple came out with a better product, the other ones were cheap garbage that did not work...............................Steve's words to his crew before going to Xerox PARC "Rape and Pillage".--- you were there (don't think so), you did not here of the stock deal to IBM??        

................................

No lies, although I'm sure Apple would rewrite reality if they could.----Give times, dates, and links to back up what you say, if not then it is a lie.

..................................

Apple was never about invention (Well after the Woz anyway), but they certainly were about style and ergonomics and marketing.----- Look at the mp3 players before and after apple came to the market, Look at the personal computer before and after apple came to the market. Look at the smart phones before and after apple came to the market. And you will see what you are saying is a lie and misinformation. Pickup a product sold before any of apple's and an Apple product and you will notice a drastic improvement in the fit and finish and user experience of an Apple product over the other products.

dc4549
dc4549

list what Steve "Stole"

dc4549
dc4549

Give examples to back up your statement that "Apple steals it does not innovate"

Repeating a lie does not make it true.

dc4549
dc4549

Please backup you statement with facts. 

List all of the phones (with pictures) that had the same "layout" and "form factor" before the iPhone came out. 

I don't think you will.

dc4549
dc4549

How can some one (Apple) with a 2Q 12 market share of 6.9% be monopolistic ??

dc4549
dc4549

How can some one (Apple) with a 2Q 12 smart phone market share of 6.9% be monopolistic??

Jeff Williams
Jeff Williams

How can this have been a fair trial? It was held just 10 miles away from Apple's corporate headquarters.

Most, if not all all of the jurors probably depend in one way or another on Apple for their income as in all likelihood they work for companies that have contracts with Apple to supply parts etc.

All this trial has done is reinforce the mindset of people of have sworn never to buy Apple products and convince those sitting on the fence to join them.

I would be interested in seeing Google's response to 'Steve's' libellous comments, he seems to be keen on the idea of people suing others.

How will he feel I wonder, when he is the defendant in a case, especially as he would most definitely be found guilty, no matter where the case were to be heard.

Ashley Walker
Ashley Walker

It's nice to see articles that show that journalists actually do their research. Unfortunately, this article wasn't one of them. (In full disclosure, I own Apple, PC, and Android products, and while I share the author's wish for a bit of variety on the market, it's to his lack of actual journalism that I take exception.)

"The jury found no direct infringement but did find inducement" for the '915 and '163 utility patents. If a device didn't infringe, it would be rather hard for a company to induce said non-existent infringement.

From juror statements: "After we debated that first patent -- what was prior art --because we had a hard time believing there was no prior art, that there wasn't something out there before Apple.... In fact we skipped that one," Ilagan continued, "so we could go on faster. It was bogging us down."

In other words, the only way that the jury was even able to bring a verdict against Samsung was that the jury a) pass judgement that went against their own findings, and b) skipped the bits of the process that they found inconvenient.

In addition, they went completely against what they were allowed to do.  Final Jury Instruction No. 35, in part:  "You should keep in mind that the damages you award are meant to compensate the patent holder and not to punish an infringer." So what did the jury do?

"We wanted to make sure the message we sent was not just a slap on the wrist," Hogan, the jury foreman said. "We wanted to make sure it was sufficiently high to be painful, but not unreasonable."

So basically, what we have here is a jury that apparently, convinced in their minds that they knew better than the judge, and the law, proceeded to give Samsung a superfluous amount of reasons to appeal, and then, not satisfied with that, decided to -talk- about it. The only peer these people are fit to sit on a jury for would be a chimpanzee that went on a rampage in a zoo.

For fuller quotes and details, see: http://www.groklaw.net/article...

Ivan
Ivan

Lets face it..if Android wasnt around, apple would have doubled prices for its i phones and ipads.lets not be so ignorant to realise that...it is android that brought smartphones to the masses and that is a huge acheivement..Apple's fight against droid handset makers  is not to correct any wrong they have done in the past is instead direcetd against pandering to Apple's heighetend insecurity... instaed of taking on Samsung in the market, Apple is taking on it in courts...instead of focusing on innovation, Apple is focusing its energies on fighting prolonged legal battles..and finally, can Apple prove for sure that it has not copied anything from Android???

Steve
Steve

  Sorry but you are so wrong. Apples price for the first IPhone at 500 was ridiculed by Steve Balmer as quoted"the most expensive phone in the world and doesn't appeal to businesses because it doesn't have a keyboard." Remember that Balmer rant. Anyway, by the 2nd generation IPhone the price was down with carrier subsidies. The price of all Apple products has gotten cheaper as manufacturing costs drop relative to higher sales volume. 

   Apple's fight against Droid handsets makers is a direct assault on all those OEM's that think they can steal Intellectual property and profit from others hard work. It won't fly, Not in America. The court has ruled and Judged Samsung to be a slavish copier of Apple's Designs and Software. This is just the beginning salvo aimed at all droid OEM's and Google will eventually pay the price for Schmidt's Thievery. Samsung has stolen and copied everything they make including the KIA. Just ask Koreans that live in America what they think of Samsung. They'll tell you they are thieves in bed with the gov. as thick as the Mafia.

Belisarius85
Belisarius85

And yet a great many people still prefer the "thieves" to monopolistic Apple.

Darktanone
Darktanone

This is my opinion from Apple's point-of-view: Consumers deserve and need more than one innovative company creating products that delight and please them. We don't want to be the only developer for the industry. Our products don't copy what was there before. They redefined them. We took what was there and reimagined it. You do the same. In the meantime, if you copy us we're going to sue you, and we'll be relentless. You can't expect to come along, steal our ideas, create products that cut into our profits, harm our customers and expect to get away with it! No, that ain't happening! So Google, Samsung, HTC, Motorola and the the other copiers, back off!  We're going to protect our profits, our shareholders and our customers at all cost! 

Steve
Steve

Thanks for informing the illiterate droid boys the truth. Unfortunately based on some of these comments the Droid boys still can't accept the fact that Google are thieves and Samsung are even bigger thieves. You Droid boys need to go back and do some research on Xerox (Parc) the mouse, GUI  and Steve Jobs recognizing their potential and the deal he made to procure those rudimentary ideas to make something great out of them. He did not steal them.

  But I guess all the Droid Boys are nothing but thieves themselves so they see nothing wrong with using OPP.

Peter Khvann
Peter Khvann

If Steve Jobs made a deal for the gui with Xerox then why don't you explan this lawsuit from 1994 Apple claimed the "look and feel" of the Macintosh operating system, taken as a whole, was protected by copyright, and that each individual element of the interface (such as the existence of windows on the screen, the rectangular appearance of windows, windows could be resized, overlap, and have title bars) was not as important as all these elements taken together. After oral arguments, the court insisted on an analysis of specific GUI elements that Apple claimed were infringements. Apple listed 189 GUI elements; the court decided that 179 of these elements had been licensed to Microsoft in the Windows 1.0 agreement and most of the remaining 10 elements were not copyrightable—either they were unoriginal to Apple, or they were the only possible way of expressing a particular idea.

Midway through the suit, Xerox filed a lawsuit against Apple claiming Apple had infringed copyrights Xerox held on its GUIs. Xerox had invited the Macintosh design team to view their GUI computers at the PARC research lab; these visits had been very influential on the development of the Macintosh GUI. Xerox's lawsuit appeared to be a defensive move to ensure that if Apple v. Microsoft established that "look and feel" was copyrightable, then Xerox would be the primary beneficiary, rather than Apple. The Xerox case was dismissed, for a variety of legal reasons[4].

hiramwalker
hiramwalker

Exactly! Legal reasons. The suit had no merit.

SixSixSix
SixSixSix

Steve Jobs never had an original innovation in his life. He was a polisher, a finisher of other people's concepts. A brilliant marketer and he got rich for it. He stole shamelessly from Xerox Parc including all the really significant features of the Mac and iPad (remember Dynabook was the original 1970 vision for Zerox Parc's research). His big bucks bought him an Alan Turing image, but Alan Turing was the real deal and never got rich.

These patents aren't about innovation. They are about locking up obvious design space. Vibrating icons and rounded corners, give me a break. Apple and Microsoft have amassed enormous patent portfolios to create new barriers to entry. The patent system is so abused it is now government sponsored trust creation. Apple and Microsoft and Oracle freely conspire together over arbitrary patent enforcement obviating the need to conspire over price fixing directly. And that is the real scandal.

Belisarius85
Belisarius85

I agree. The current patent system is set up to completely favor the largest companies, who can spam "patents" of such simple concepts as a box with rounded edges.

I absolutely hate (HATE!) Apple, but given the profit-maximizing edict of corporations, I cannot blame them (and others like them) for utilizing the existing patent system to their advantage. It's the patent system that needs to change, and it is our government's job to do it. 

nanoco
nanoco

And what has Samsung innovated? Screen technology was bought from US companies like kokak's OLED. You are really full of it.. .Apple gave us the first consumer GUI with a mouse , OSX, iTunes, GarageBand, Aperture, Final Cut Pro, webkit that is the foundation of Safari, FireFox and Google's chrome, firewire, thunderbolt.  

SixSixSix
SixSixSix

 Xerox Parc created the first commercial GUI with a mouse. They in turn drew on truly pioneering work at Stanford where the mouse originated. Apple and Microsoft both ripped it off. OSX has a Mach kernel, iTunes was not the first online music store, I'll skip the other apps that may have small fiddles but nothing significant. Webkit is not the foundation of Firefox which precedes it considerably. Webkit is not a major innovation, it is yet another implementation of a technology innovated at CERN, refined at NCSA, and well polished by Netscape and yes, Microsoft. To use the computer science term everything Apple has done is so much polishing of the turd. Nice polishing, they make big money, but not meaningful innovation. I see no reason to let them stop other people from using the same technologies that Apple fundamentally did not create. The Apple patents are trash that will ultimately be thrown out on the basis of prior art when there is a fair trial upon appeal. If not, US companies had better watch out everywhere else in the world.

SixSixSix
SixSixSix

 Oh yeah, and the most important advance in Google Chrome is its independent V-8 Javascript engine. Apple had nothing to do with that.

hdboy
hdboy

Peter, you've obviously never read "The Federalist Papers" a group of documents penned by the Founding Fathers to lay out the details if how American democracy and commerce would work. For starters, Wikipedia has a good overview of these important works. Average citizens always are shocked to discover the government's actual position on supporting commerce vs. consumers that are laid out by these papers.

Anthony Neuberger
Anthony Neuberger

Right.  Kinda like how Apple ripped off the Graphical User Interface from Xerox and then got pissed when Microsoft did the same.  It's unreasonable for Apple to think that they are the only people with the right to the GUI, or in Apple v. Samsung, a rectangle with rounded corners! Is everyone else supposed to now use triangles, circles, ellipses and hexagons? Not to mention that the "Icons" patent is BS because Windows used "icons" ever since it's inception all the way up until Vista. Not to mentioned Blackberrys and pre-Android smartphones also used "icons" as well.  And with regard to "pinch-to-zoom", that function has been available on touch pads for both Mac's and PC's laptops for years!  Microsoft should actually sue Apple because Apple ripped off its idea for the tablet in the first place!

i hate this
i hate this

fix this broken patent system ... then talk about innovation 

i hate this
i hate this

innovating rather than copying ?  What did google do with buying motorola ? innovation or buying innovation ?  Basically patent system is bad it should be fixed .. i can patent touching a screen , then what will others do ..

thedougbob
thedougbob

You are disgusting. This articles comparison of counterfeit watches and the apple android law suit is a slap to the consumer to think they are so ignorant as to believe your fanboy article.

Son, the icons didn't have a damn thing to do with this. Icons with text under them have been used in operating systems since GUI UI started. Windows, Linux, Apple and Android all use them. You are such a DB to pass yourself off as a knowledgeable writer.

Your photo illustrates the apple at its equivalent desktop and the android is in its application menu. A totally dis-similiar comparison.

thedougbob
thedougbob

You are disgusting. This articles comparison of counterfeit watches and the apple android law suit is a slap to the consumer to think they are so ignorant as to believe your fanboy article.

Son, the icons didn't have a damn thing to do with this. Icons with text under them have been used in operating systems since GUI UI started. Windows, Linux, Apple and Android all use them. You are such a DB to pass yourself off as a knowledgeable writer.

Your photo illustrates the apple at its equivalent desktop and the android is in its application menu. A totally dis-similiar comparison.

Sukumar Devaguptapu
Sukumar Devaguptapu

 Have Chinese products not infringed on any Apple' s  products and patents ?

Peter Khvann
Peter Khvann

The guy who wrote this article why dont you open a can of Coca Cola and Pesi and pour it into a clear glass dam they look exactly the same they should sue each other to 

Sukumar Devaguptapu
Sukumar Devaguptapu

South Korean courts and South Koreans were soft on Samsung, and American courts were hard on Samsung. The fines levied on Samsung were not payable immediately..then when, and why ?