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Apple sues HTC for alleged infringement of 20 iPhone patents - Page 2

post #41 of 279
Quote:
Apple co-founder Steve Jobs: "We think competition is healthy, but competitors should create their own original technology, not steal ours."


Here we go again...corporate warfare.
post #42 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by ch2co View Post

Hi, my name is Sue, how do you do!*

But seriously folks, I've been a Mac owner and lover since 1985 and am sick and tired of copycats. The thing that Apple has going for it is innovation, creativity, quality, and service. The copycats have, well they have copies of the real thing, complete with flaws, foibles, shoddy workmanship, and disservice to the creative process. Sue the bastards!, probably won't put the command line interface back on desktops all over the world again, but...





*(for you you youngsters out there, it's an old Johnny Cash song, well worth the listen)

HTC is clearly walking the line here.
post #43 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

That is note just ONE patent.

Just curious, why do you always post from your Iphone?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post

Note that Apple did nothing against Palm, even though that was a similar situation. Apple *has* decided to go after HTC, though. Seems Apple has a strong position this time.

No, Apple had a strong case against Palm, they just didn't see them as a real threat. Htc coupled with Android is a very real threat. It's on the table. And I agree with the above statements that the Implementation of multitouch to the N1 in addition to Sense UI probably tipped the scale.
post #44 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by UltimateKylie View Post

We don't even know what patents HTC has supposedly infringed. But 20 infringements is a bit suspect. Even Multitouch is suspect since Apple didn't invent it, just bought a company who was working on an implementation meanwhile other companies like Microsoft Research were working on the same ideas (that became the Microsoft Surface).

Like you said and what the article said....Only apple and htc know the 20 infringements, so quit with the speculation and your conjecture until there is more information. And the surface..that is bulky hunk of wasted R&D it uses projectors... and the smallest form factor the technology and all that R&D money could produce was a TABLE...a huge freaking usable, non-portable table....GREAT EXAMPLE!

Quote:
Originally Posted by UltimateKylie View Post

And if it is all Google/Android related then sue Motorola (their Android devices have multitouch in Europe). Or see Google directly. Or sue Microsoft over the Zune HD.

Why sue microsoft they are no threat, their me too!® device is not lucrative...
post #45 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by monstrosity View Post

You also have to remember that Apple have been in the computer biz since day one. They pretty much invented the UI (albeit initially slightly pilfered), and a phone is just a small computer really.

Exactly. And people forget, (or don't even know), that Apple patents *everything* they do that they think might be patentable and wins most of those patents.

Check this site daily: http://www.patentlyapple.com/patently-apple/

... and you will see how many patents Apple comes up with week to week.

Now multiply by 20 years.

Apple probably has one of the deepest, most significant, and widest ranging computer-related patent portfolio's in existence.
post #46 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

Your opinion doesn't seem to be worth much. You're just making a lot of angry unsupported statements here and throwing in some guesses for good measure. It's much more likely the patents are related to concrete things like the multi-touch implementation.

Despite what you rave about above, multi-billion dollar corporations hardly ever engage in expensive lawsuits over emotional, high-school bitchy-ness. Mostly folks grow out of such things before they even get hired for the company, let alone end up running it.

Apple also was finally granted it's trademarks last week, which means that they have a lock on the "look" of the iPhone as well. I don't think they are HTC phones, but I've seen several handsets that look far too close to the iPhone to not be infringing on the trademark.

Well Nokia's lawsuit was dismissed extremely fast on here and mostly labeled as "high-school bitchy-ness".

Again, so there seems to be two standards at play here. And yes obviously this is an Apple fansite but that doesn't negate the fact that Nokia's lawsuit was dismissed despite the facts it also came from a multi-billion dollar company.

So which one is it?

Me, I have already stated that i am for patent reform. So my position is claer.

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post #47 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post

Here we go!

"We've patented the hell out of this thing"

Finally! Apple wakes up and takes action.

Finally! Nokia wakes up and takes action.
post #48 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by UltimateKylie View Post

This is stupid. HTC has been making phones since 2002. In fact I have their first ever Windows Smartphone the Orange SPV.

I wanto know exactly what it is they claim HTC is stealing from them. I wouldn't be suprised if it has to do with the Nexus One getting Multitouch though. But that is only one patent. Seriously 20 things?

We desperately need patent reform. So much of the iPhone was taken from what HTC, Nokia has pionered. Yes, the iPhone was a million times more userfriendly but don't tell me the iPhone would have been possible even without the existance of Windows Mobile and the Orange SPV that broke ground in bringing smartphones to market.

My opinion: Apple is just scared of the future of Android and WP7S. If they were confident about their product and their expansion possibilities they would not sue. If the iPhone OS 4 was revolutionary (like the original iPhone) they wouldn't be scared.

I could be mistaken but I never saw any Multi-Touch Nokia, or any multi-touch phone, before the iPhone came out.

And I guess MS or Google have never sued anyone in regards to patent infringement?

I guess it just depends who you are, right?
post #49 of 279
Down with HTC

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post #50 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by Boogerman2000 View Post

No, Apple had a strong case against Palm, they just didn't see them as a real threat. Htc coupled with Android is a very real threat. It's on the table. And I agree with the above statements that the Implementation of multitouch to the N1 in addition to Sense UI probably tipped the scale.

Thank You. Exactly what I was saying that Android was a threat. Or atleast it is a viewed as one.

But, warning to Apple the fact that they are ignoring Palm (unless there is a hidden license agreement I don't know about ) could prove to be negative as HTC is like to say they are selecting enforcing their patents and such Apple could lose the case.

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post #51 of 279
HTC has been making smartphones long before apple has. I wonder what it is they had to steal from them...
post #52 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by cnocbui View Post

Finally! Nokia wakes up and takes action.

Nokia wasn't the one who changed the mobile landscape in June 2007, with everyone releasing phones that looked and acted like Nokia phones shortly after.

Apple released the iPhone - really unlike anything else out there - and then suddenly we saw iPhone-like smartphones everywhere, many that were eerily similar, if not by all appearances visible copies. Something was definitely up. Seems a lot of the also-rans were looking to cash in on the iPhone-like smartphone craze before it hit the fan.
post #53 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

Apple probably has one of the deepest, most significant, and widest ranging computer-related patent portfolio's in existence.

Cool aid alert, cool aid alert - warning, warning!

Quote:
No one beats IBM (IBM) on patents. For 17 years running, Big Blue has been granted more U.S. patents than any other applicant, raking in an *unprecedented 4,914 in 2009. That tally is more than the number of patents granted last year to Microsoft (MSFT), Hewlett-Packard (HPQ), Oracle (ORCL), Apple (AAPL), Accenture (ACN), and Google (GOOG) combined. IBM's worldwide portfolio now covers more than 40,000 inventions for everything from microprocessors for video games to the erasable read-write CD.
post #54 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by Boogerman2000 View Post

in addition to Sense UI probably tipped the scale.

what about sense UI is a ripoff from Apple? The program launcher tab? You've GOT to be kidding me
post #55 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by chronster View Post

HTC has been making smartphones long before apple has. I wonder what it is they had to steal from them...

It's a bit suspicious that after June 2007 all iPhone "competitors" began rolling out devices looking and acting like the iPhone. Some which were by all appearances visible copies. I guess they were all sitting on their game-changing patents and decided to implement them in 2015, except Apple managed to steal them earlier in 2007. LOL, right.
post #56 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by chronster View Post

what about sense UI is a ripoff from Apple? The program launcher tab? You've GOT to be kidding me

no, I only meant the multitouch support
post #57 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wings View Post

I can 100% guarantee that Apple's patents have absolutely nothing to do with HTC's rendition of Windows Mobile.

How can you "guarantee" that?
post #58 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by Boogerman2000 View Post

no, I only meant the multitouch support

My guess would be the new "pinch-to-view-all-panels" feature Sense got. Maybe Apple was just about to use that in their latest version of the iPhone?
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post #59 of 279
The 331 Patent, entitled "Time-Based, Non-Constant Translation Of User Interface Objects Between States," was duly and legally issued on April 22, 2008 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

The 949 Patent, entitled "Touch Screen Device, Method, And Graphical User Interface For Determining Commands By Applying Heuristics," was duly and legally issued on January 20, 2009 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. A copy of the 949 Patent is attached hereto as Exhibit B.

The 849 Patent, entitled "Unlocking A Device By Performing Gestures On An Unlock Image," was duly and legally issued on February 2, 2010 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. A copy of the 849 Patent is attached hereto as Exhibit C.

The 381 Patent, entitled "List Scrolling And Document Translation, Scaling, And Rotation On A Touch-Screen Display," was duly and legally issued on December 23, 2008 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. A copy of the 381 Patent is attached hereto as Exhibit D.

The 726 Patent, entitled "System And Method For Managing Power Conditions Within A Digital Camera Device," was duly and legally issued on July 6, 1999 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. A copy of the 726 Patent is attached hereto as Exhibit E.

The 076 Patent, entitled "Automated Response To And Sensing Of User Activity In Portable Devices," was duly and legally issued on December 15, 2009 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. A copy of the 076 Patent is attached hereto as Exhibit F.

The 105 Patent, entitled "GMSK Signal Processors For Improved Communications Capacity And Quality," was duly and legally issued on December 8, 1998 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. A copy of the 105 Patent is attached hereto as Exhibit G.

The 453 Patent, entitled "Conserving Power By Reducing Voltage Supplied To An Instruction-Processing Portion Of A Processor," was duly and legally issued on June 3, 2008 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. A copy of the 453 Patent is attached hereto as Exhibit H.

The 599 Patent, entitled "Object-Oriented Graphic System," was duly and legally issued on October 3, 1995 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. A copy of the 599 Patent is attached hereto as Exhibit I.

The 354 Patent, entitled "Object-Oriented Event Notification System With Listener Registration Of Both Interests And Methods," was duly and legally issued on July 23, 2002 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. A copy of the 354 Patent is attached hereto as Exhibit J.

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post #60 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post

It's a bit suspicious that after June 2007 all iPhone "competitors" began rolling out devices looking and acting like the iPhone. Some which were by all appearances visible copies. I guess they were all sitting on their game-changing patents and decided to implement them in 2015, except Apple managed to steal them earlier in 2007. LOL, right.

Released June 5th 2007:


What were you saying again? Oh right right, everything started to look like the iphone after it's release...

Only a fool would deny that Apple got companies off their ass and improve their products, but the same can be said about someone who thinks every product released afterward was only meant to emulate the iphone. The touch pro was a very good selling phone and other than touchscreen, it wasn't like the iphone at all.

So you mean companies can't make devices that are just touch screen? What is the matter with you? That's something people wanted long before iphone, so it was something HTC naturally would have evolved to on their own, iphone or not.
post #61 of 279
Looks like the legal team has an idea for how to spend that $40 billion in cash!
post #62 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by wbrasington View Post

Appleis scared of Android?
Check yor meds buddy.... it's time.


Android is shipping almost 22 million units a year
post #63 of 279
So based on the list I posted above from Gizmodo, they are for example suing on the lockscreen found on touch screen phones.

To me, that sounds pretty frivolous.

It also sounds they are just gathering all their patents and throwing them at HTC in the hope they stick.

Some of the like the Digital Camera patent are quite old. HTC has used Digital Camera for years (my Orange SPV had an included Camera you could attach).

Notice the lack of multitouch.

This just proves to me that they are for whatever reason afraid of Android.

Also reducing voltage to the processor seems quite suspect as AMD and Intel have done this for years. Yes this was issued in 2008. I know it states only a portion of the processor, but isn't this exactly what NVIDIA Tegra does?

My opinion is that we do need patent reform and that Apple should be ashamed of themselves.

Most of this has NOTHING to do with the iPhone is just an attempt to bully HTC over Android.

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post #64 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by UltimateKylie View Post

The ‘331 Patent, entitled "Time-Based, Non-Constant Translation Of User Interface Objects Between States," was duly and legally issued on April 22, 2008 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

The ‘949 Patent, entitled "Touch Screen Device, Method, And Graphical User Interface For Determining Commands By Applying Heuristics," was duly and legally issued on January 20, 2009 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. A copy of the ‘949 Patent is attached hereto as Exhibit B.

The ‘849 Patent, entitled "Unlocking A Device By Performing Gestures On An Unlock Image," was duly and legally issued on February 2, 2010 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. A copy of the ‘849 Patent is attached hereto as Exhibit C.

The ‘381 Patent, entitled "List Scrolling And Document Translation, Scaling, And Rotation On A Touch-Screen Display," was duly and legally issued on December 23, 2008 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. A copy of the ‘381 Patent is attached hereto as Exhibit D.

The ‘726 Patent, entitled "System And Method For Managing Power Conditions Within A Digital Camera Device," was duly and legally issued on July 6, 1999 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. A copy of the ‘726 Patent is attached hereto as Exhibit E.

The ‘076 Patent, entitled "Automated Response To And Sensing Of User Activity In Portable Devices," was duly and legally issued on December 15, 2009 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. A copy of the ‘076 Patent is attached hereto as Exhibit F.

The ‘105 Patent, entitled "GMSK Signal Processors For Improved Communications Capacity And Quality," was duly and legally issued on December 8, 1998 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. A copy of the ‘105 Patent is attached hereto as Exhibit G.

The ‘453 Patent, entitled "Conserving Power By Reducing Voltage Supplied To An Instruction-Processing Portion Of A Processor," was duly and legally issued on June 3, 2008 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. A copy of the ‘453 Patent is attached hereto as Exhibit H.

The ‘599 Patent, entitled "Object-Oriented Graphic System," was duly and legally issued on October 3, 1995 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. A copy of the ‘599 Patent is attached hereto as Exhibit I.

The ‘354 Patent, entitled "Object-Oriented Event Notification System With Listener Registration Of Both Interests And Methods," was duly and legally issued on July 23, 2002 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. A copy of the ‘354 Patent is attached hereto as Exhibit J.

453 has been done by RIM and others for many years

unless HTC implemented the same features in the exact same way Apple did, then there is no case. having a patent doesn't mean no one else can do the same thing. just means they have to find another way to do it. it's called innovation and same thing happened to Kodak in the 1800's.
post #65 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by chronster View Post

Released June 5th 2007:


What were you saying again? Oh right right, everything started to look like the iphone after it's release...

I don't know what you think this image proves. It looks nothing like the iPhone to me and doesn't appear to infringe any UI patents.
post #66 of 279
This is interesting. I bet this is both a shot across the bow of Google and anyone else who is copying the look and feel of the iPhone experience, as well as a test case for the Apple Patents. I'm sure they lawyers have carefully looked at the many possible infringement lawsuits and picked the one they would get the most mileage from. The chilling effect on multi-touch devices could be significant.

I'll be curious to see if Google pays for HTC's legal fees. I'm sure part of the suit's purpose is to discourage partnering with Google. I still think that if Google got involved there might be SEC complaints against Eric Schmidt stemming from his Apple Board of Directors stint.

As for the comment that multi-touch is only one patent, that's doubtful. There are most likely many patents regarding multitouch, both device and software.

brian g
post #67 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by al_bundy View Post

453 has been done by RIM and others for many years

yes but did they patent it?

Sometimes something that seems like common sense, especially in software development, gets overlooked as a patentable feature. If Apple came in, saw there was no patent, and got one of their own, they CAN turn around and make rim pay up, even if they were doing it before Apple.

At least, that's how it was explained to me a while back.

Notice 599, the object-oriented graphic system.

I found this description: An object-oriented graphic system is disclosed including a processor with an attached display, storage and object-oriented operating system. The graphic system builds a component object in the storage of the processor for managing graphic processing. The processor includes an object for connecting one or more graphic devices to various objects responsible for tasks such as graphic accelerators, frame buffers, page description languages and vector engines. The system is fully extensible and includes polymorphic processing built into each of the support objects.

So to me, that just means gui using object oriented programming, which is where programming has been headed for the past 10 years or so now. The natural progression of things would have led many different companies to use OOP in newer versions of their software, but these guys patented it. I could be all wrong about this one though.
post #68 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

I don't know what you think this image proves. It looks nothing like the iPhone to me and doesn't appear to infringe any UI patents.

Well, it's pretty much no different than the other devices quadra said were emulating the iphone. It's got a touch screen and a button that brings you to the home screen. Big whoop. That's exactly my point though. People will point to devices like this and say they only exist because of the iphone, which is bs obviously since it was released before the first iphone was.
post #69 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by chronster View Post

Released June 5th 2007:


What were you saying again? Oh right right, everything started to look like the iphone after it's release...

Only a fool would deny that Apple got companies off their ass and improve their products, but the same can be said about someone who thinks every product released afterward was only meant to emulate the iphone. The touch pro was a very good selling phone and other than touchscreen, it wasn't like the iphone at all.

So you mean companies can't make devices that are just touch screen? What is the matter with you? That's something people wanted long before iphone, so it was something HTC naturally would have evolved to on their own, iphone or not.

IPhone announced January 2007 at Macworld, with features demo'd. Pretty much a how-to seminar for the rest of the industry.

That HTC Touch copycat announced June 5, 2007. Plenty of time (from January to June) for HTC to slap a hasty touch interface onto Winblows Mobile.
post #70 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by chronster View Post

yes but did they patent it?

Sometimes something that seems like common sense, especially in software development, gets overlooked as a patentable feature. If Apple came in, saw there was no patent, and got one of their own, they CAN turn around and make rim pay up, even if they were doing it before Apple.

At least, that's how it was explained to me a while back.

Notice 599, the object-oriented graphic system.

I found this description: An object-oriented graphic system is disclosed including a processor with an attached display, storage and object-oriented operating system. The graphic system builds a component object in the storage of the processor for managing graphic processing. The processor includes an object for connecting one or more graphic devices to various objects responsible for tasks such as graphic accelerators, frame buffers, page description languages and vector engines. The system is fully extensible and includes polymorphic processing built into each of the support objects.

So to me, that just means gui using object oriented programming, which is where programming has been headed for the past 10 years or so now. The natural progression of things would have led many different companies to use OOP in newer versions of their software, but these guys patented it. I could be all wrong about this one though.

They only need to patent it if they plan to sue or profit off that idea. However, for HTC it would be a perfect defense as prior art.

Prior art can allow HTC to petition that the patent be annulled as the patent is not new. In fact Apple had to state on the patent application that it knew of no prior art.

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post #71 of 279
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Originally Posted by str1f3 View Post

I'm not arguing against all patents in general but just this case. Apple is large corporation and these are games. Apple has innovated and has taken ideas from others. This is a reality and Jobs himself admitted as much.

Right now, large companies seem to be able to patent anything. This is a major problem.

I feel bad for your situation but this is why the system needs major reform. Existing patents are stomped on and larger businesses always benefit.


Apple has innovated and has taken ideas from others, indeed. What company has not? The whole point of patent law is to facilitate this very process, by encouraging inventors to publish the details of useful and marketable ideas in open disclosures, giving them a vetted claim to priority and royalties.

Why exactly is it a "major problem" that large companies can do this? Small companies can.

Anyone can. Some years ago, Peter Roberts, a Sears store employee, independently patented (#3,208,318) the quick-release socket wrench. He made $1,000,000 in court after Sears stole it. Is that a problem to you as well?
post #72 of 279
If someone's not suing you, and you're not suing someone else, you're not successful. That's the way the game is played.

If you're successful, someone will want to steal some of your market share and copy you. If you're successful, you have enough money to burn going after the copycats who actually start to steal some of that market share.

If you're successful, someone else will accuse you of copying them and try to get $$$ out of you. You can either pay them to go away (settle out of court) or incur the cost to fight them off.

There are certainly injustices when a big fish steals from a little fish who can't afford to fight off the big fish.

Welcome to modern capitalism.

- Jasen.
post #73 of 279
Of course! Nokia was waiting until 2018 to implement the patents Apple stole! Nokia was just waiting for the right moment to change the whole mobile game.
post #74 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post

IPhone announced January 2007 at Macworld, with features demo'd. Pretty much a how-to seminar for the rest of the industry.

That HTC Touch copycat announced June 5, 2007. Plenty of time (from January to June) for HTC to slap a hasty touch interface onto Winblows Mobile.

yeah right LOL. They put the phone together (which happened to sell GREAT) in just a few months.

Why is it then that when I see people releasing timelines for HTC, they tend to be correct in showing what comes out a year or 2 later?

Face it, HTC was working on this thing before the iphone was announced. If anything, the iphone just put a rush on things for them.


What about Dell Axim? Released in 2002. You could easily compare that to the ipod touch if you wanted to (although it would be a bit of a stretch.) Technology would have gone where it is today regardless of iphone or not.

edit:

Jeez how could I overlook the O2 xda?


Released in 2002 and was responsible for the booming xda-developers community today
post #75 of 279
It's hilarious that all these companies in tech allegedly hold such innovative patents, yet Apple seems to be the one always releasing game-changing products for consumers to use, and are usually the first ones to bring them to market.

Perhaps these also-rans should simply hand over their patents to Apple so they could actually do something with them.
post #76 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post

IPhone announced January 2007 at Macworld, with features demo'd. Pretty much a how-to seminar for the rest of the industry.

That HTC Touch copycat announced June 5, 2007. Plenty of time (from January to June) for HTC to slap a hasty touch interface onto Winblows Mobile.


a year or two ago Wired or some other magazine had a big article on how the original iPhone was made. Development started before the ROKR was released. people worked 60-80 hour weeks for 2-3 years, people quit out of frustration and then came back a few days later, months of debugging to fix bugs. and even then it wasn't done at the first unveiling. you have to be naive to believe that Apple didn't plan the app store from the beginning. the dev kit is severa GB along with all the changes they would have to make in iTunes and on the back end so they probably just left it for the next version.

there is no way HTC just coded a touch GUI in a few months
post #77 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post

Nokia wasn't the one who changed the mobile landscape in June 2007, with everyone releasing phones that looked and acted like Nokia phones shortly after.

Apple released the iPhone - really unlike anything else out there - and then suddenly we saw iPhone-like smartphones everywhere, many that were eerily similar, if not by all appearances visible copies. Something was definitely up. Seems a lot of the also-rans were looking to cash in on the iPhone-like smartphone craze before it hit the fan.

Oh whoop de doo!. Apple lost the look-feel patent dispute with Microsoft yonks ago.

Nokia were making phones long before Apple showed up. I could say the iPhone is eerily similar to previous Nokia devices - you now those small rectangular things you can make phone calls to people on by talking into one end and listening at the other.

My point, was that jumping up and down with glee because Apple are suing HTC for patent infringement is exactly the same as a Nokia fan doing the same when Nokia takes Apple to task for the same thing.
post #78 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post

It's hilarious that all these companies in tech allegedly hold such innovative patents, yet Apple seems to be the one always releasing game-changing products for consumers to use, and are usually the first ones to bring them to market.

Perhaps these also-rans should simply hand over their patents to Apple so they could actually do something with them.

Yeah! Game changing innovations just like Google Maps, Google Search, and Google Navigation! Oh wait...
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post #79 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by al_bundy View Post

a year or two ago Wired or some other magazine had a big article on how the original iPhone was made.

Good call . . .



http://www.wired.com/gadgets/wireles...6-02/ff_iphone

The Untold Story: How the iPhone Blew Up the Wireless Industry

By Fred Vogelstein 01.09.08

The demo was not going well.

Again.

It was a late morning in the fall of 2006. Almost a year earlier, Steve Jobs had tasked about 200 of Apple's top engineers with creating the iPhone. Yet here, in Apple's boardroom, it was clear that the prototype was still a disaster. It wasn't just buggy, it flat-out didn't work. The phone dropped calls constantly, the battery stopped charging before it was full, data and applications routinely became corrupted and unusable. The list of problems seemed endless. At the end of the demo, Jobs fixed the dozen or so people in the room with a level stare and said, "We don't have a product yet."
The effect was even more terrifying than one of Jobs' trademark tantrums. When the Apple chief screamed at his staff, it was scary but familiar. This time, his relative calm was unnerving. "It was one of the few times at Apple when I got a chill," says someone who was in the meeting.

The ramifications were serious. The iPhone was to be the centerpiece of Apple's annual Macworld convention, set to take place in just a few months. Since his return to Apple in 1997, Jobs had used the event as a showcase to launch his biggest products, and Apple-watchers were expecting another dramatic announcement. Jobs had already admitted that Leopard — the new version of Apple's operating system — would be delayed. If the iPhone wasn't ready in time, Macworld would be a dud, Jobs' critics would pounce, and Apple's stock price could suffer.

This 4.8-ounce sliver of glass and aluminum is an explosive device that has forever changed the mobile-phone business, wresting power from carriers and giving it to manufacturers, developers, and consumers.

And what would AT&T think? After a year and a half of secret meetings, Jobs had finally negotiated terms with the wireless division of the telecom giant (Cingular at the time) to be the iPhone's carrier. In return for five years of exclusivity, roughly 10 percent of iPhone sales in AT&T stores, and a thin slice of Apple's iTunes revenue, AT&T had granted Jobs unprecedented power. He had cajoled AT&T into spending millions of dollars and thousands of man-hours to create a new feature, so-called visual voicemail, and to reinvent the time-consuming in-store sign-up process. He'd also wrangled a unique revenue-sharing arrangement, garnering roughly $10 a month from every iPhone customer's AT&T bill. On top of all that, Apple retained complete control over the design, manufacturing, and marketing of the iPhone. Jobs had done the unthinkable: squeezed a good deal out of one of the largest players in the entrenched wireless industry. Now, the least he could do was meet his deadlines.

For those working on the iPhone, the next three months would be the most stressful of their careers. Screaming matches broke out routinely in the hallways. Engineers, frazzled from all-night coding sessions, quit, only to rejoin days later after catching up on their sleep. A product manager slammed the door to her office so hard that the handle bent and locked her in; it took colleagues more than an hour and some well-placed whacks with an aluminum bat to free her.

But by the end of the push, just weeks before Macworld, Jobs had a prototype to show to the suits at AT&T. In mid-December 2006, he met wireless boss Stan Sigman at a suite in the Four Seasons hotel in Las Vegas. He showed off the iPhone's brilliant screen, its powerful Web browser, its engaging user interface. Sigman, a taciturn Texan steeped in the conservative engineering traditions that permeate America's big phone companies, was uncharacteristically effusive, calling the iPhone "the best device I have ever seen." (Details of this and other key moments in the making of the iPhone were provided by people with knowledge of the events. Apple and AT&T would not discuss these meetings or the specific terms of the relationship.)

Six months later, on June 29, 2007, the iPhone went on sale. At press time, analysts were speculating that customers would snap up about 3 million units by the end of 2007, making it the fastest-selling smartphone of all time. It is also arguably Apple's most profitable device. The company nets an estimated $80 for every $399 iPhone it sells, and that's not counting the $240 it makes from every two-year AT&T contract an iPhone customer signs. Meanwhile, about 40 percent of iPhone buyers are new to AT&T's rolls, and the iPhone has tripled the carrier's volume of data traffic in cities like New York and San Francisco.

But as important as the iPhone has been to the fortunes of Apple and AT&T, its real impact is on the structure of the $11 billion-a-year US mobile phone industry. For decades, wireless carriers have treated manufacturers like serfs, using access to their networks as leverage to dictate what phones will get made, how much they will cost, and what features will be available on them. Handsets were viewed largely as cheap, disposable lures, massively subsidized to snare subscribers and lock them into using the carriers' proprietary services. But the iPhone upsets that balance of power. Carriers are learning that the right phone — even a pricey one — can win customers and bring in revenue. Now, in the pursuit of an Apple-like contract, every manufacturer is racing to create a phone that consumers will love, instead of one that the carriers approve of. "The iPhone is already changing the way carriers and manufacturers behave," says Michael Olson, a securities analyst at Piper Jaffray.
post #80 of 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by UltimateKylie View Post

... The 599 Patent, entitled "Object-Oriented Graphic System," was duly and legally issued on October 3, 1995 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. A copy of the 599 Patent is attached hereto as Exhibit I. ...

I think Apple's competitors should be worried about this one. Appears to be a fifteen year old patent on a very basic level.
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