or Connect
AppleInsider › Forums › Mobile › iPhone › Apple files motion to intervene in Lodsys suit against iOS developers
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Apple files motion to intervene in Lodsys suit against iOS developers

post #1 of 49
Thread Starter 
In an effort to protect its iOS developers, Apple has filed a motion to intervene in legal action taken by patent-holder Lodsys over App Store in-app purchases.

Apple's presence in the Lodsys complaints is pending court approval, but intellectual property activist Florian Mueller of FOSS Patents said he believes it's "fairly likely" that Apple will be admitted as an intervenor. In its filing, Apple asserted that its iOS developers are covered by an existing license agreement with Lodsys.

"The app developers whom Lodsys sued appear to be bound by a non-disclosure agreement (which makes sense), so they can't speak out on their current relationship with Apple," Mueller wrote in his blog on Friday. "While I don't have any confirmation from anyone that Apple has agreed to cover those defendants' costs and potential risks, it's hard to imagine how else this could work.

"In its motion, Apple states explicitly that the sued app developers 'are individuals or small entities with far fewer resources than Apple and [...] lack the technical information, ability, and incentive to adequately protect Apple's rights under its license agreement."

While developers aren't allowed to speak out on matters involving the Lodsys lawsuit, this week Apple began asking its iPhone and iPad developers about legal complications. Developers who access the iTunesConnect application management service have been asked, through a form titled "iCloud Legal Information," if they have any apps that "may have a legal issue." It has been assumed that the question pertains to the Lodsys complaints.

In May, iOS developers first began receiving legal threats from Lodsys, accusing them of patent infringement. The company has asserted that developers who utilize the in-app purchasing system Apple created for iOS software are in violation of U.S. Patent No. 7,222,078, entitled "Methods and Systems for Gathering Information from Units of a Commodity Across a Network."



Lodsys later revealed that while Apple is licensed for the patent in question, the company does not believe that the agreement in place extends to iOS developers. Last month, Apple initially responded by sending a formal letter to Lodsys, asking the company to cease legal threats against developers who utilize in-app purchases.

While Lodsys initially only threatened legal action against developers, giving them 21 days to comply with their requests, the company followed through on those threats last week, and filed lawsuits against iOS developers. Lodsys is seeking 0.575 percent of U.S. revenue over the period of the notice letter to the expiration of the patent, plus applicable usage, a rate that would amount to $5,750 per year for an application that makes $1 million in annual sales, the company has said.

This week, Michigan company ForeSee Results Inc filed suit against Lodsys seeking a declaratory judgment that would invalidate four of the company's patents. It said that Lodsys has "threatened assertion" against its customers, including Adidas, Best Buy and WE Energies.
post #2 of 49
"Methods and Systems for Gathering INformation from Units of a Commodity Across a Network."


Hmmmmm could you get anymore specific?
Forgo Looking At The Past As A Judge; Instead Be a Student.
Reply
Forgo Looking At The Past As A Judge; Instead Be a Student.
Reply
post #3 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by MissionGrey View Post

"Methods and Systems for Gathering INformation from Units of a Commodity Across a Network."


Hmmmmm could you get anymore specific?

It's specific enough that Apple licensed it rather than litigating its validity--something that we know that Apple isn't averse to doing.
post #4 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by jukes View Post

It's specific enough that Apple licensed it rather than litigating its validity--something that we know that Apple isn't averse to doing.

Except that the best information we have indicates that Apple licensed it under a blanket license that covers a large number of patents, meaning that they probably got the license for each individual patent pretty cheaply, making it not worth delving deeply into the validity of each.

In other words, you can't necessarily conclude anything about the patent's specificity or validity from the fact that it's licensed to Apple. I'm sure you know all this, so no reason to toss BS around on the forum.
post #5 of 49
Google would do the same thing for their devs, right? Right?!? (crickets chirping...)

   Apple develops an improved programming language.  Google copied Java.  Everything you need to know, right there.

 

  MA497LL/A FB463LL/A MC572LL/A FC060LL/A MD481LL/A MD388LL/A ME344LL/A

Reply

   Apple develops an improved programming language.  Google copied Java.  Everything you need to know, right there.

 

  MA497LL/A FB463LL/A MC572LL/A FC060LL/A MD481LL/A MD388LL/A ME344LL/A

Reply
post #6 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

Except that the best information we have indicates that Apple licensed it under a blanket license that covers a large number of patents, meaning that they probably got the license for each individual patent pretty cheaply, making it not worth delving deeply into the validity of each.

In other words, you can't necessarily conclude anything about the patent's specificity or validity from the fact that it's licensed to Apple. I'm sure you know all this, so no reason to toss BS around on the forum.

I just hope that this isn't a situation similar to the one where they licensed the use of overlapping windows and other System features to Microsoft many years ago for the purpose of Microsoft writing programs for Apple, but where the wording was not specific enough so that MS stole those features for Windows, and when Apple took them to court, they lost.

If that's the case with Lodsys's portion, then Apple could be in the right, but if Apple is wrong here, because of sloppy legal work, Lodsys could hold the cards.

We won't know this for a while.
post #7 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by John.B View Post

Google would do the same thing for their devs, right? Right?!? (crickets chirping...)

Or they could wait until all the lawsuits are settled, and let their devs hang until then.
post #8 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

I just hope that this isn't a situation similar to the one where they licensed the use of overlapping windows and other System features to Microsoft many years ago for the purpose of Microsoft writing programs for Apple, but where the wording was not specific enough so that MS stole those features for Windows, and when Apple took them to court, they lost.

If that's the case with Lodsys's portion, then Apple could be in the right, but if Apple is wrong here, because of sloppy legal work, Lodsys could hold the cards.

We won't know this for a while.

This would be assuming that as painful a lesson that situation was, Apple learned nothing at all from the experience and are now poised to repeat the same clueless strategy that cost them so much. Given everything known about Apple from that time forward, are there any indications that they are capable of learning from their mistakes? That is the critical question to answer in order to understand whether or not they will be successful in challenging Lodsys on this.

Every indication mel, from the staffing they have hired over the last several years, to the lawsuits in which they have been involved indicate a track record of not only having learned but having advanced the capacity to deal with this successfully. Most of this has been followed assiduously here at AI...
If you are going to insist on being an ass, at least demonstrate the intelligence to be a smart one
Reply
If you are going to insist on being an ass, at least demonstrate the intelligence to be a smart one
Reply
post #9 of 49
AFAIK, the only Android app included in the suit was written by an Apple developer who just happened to also have an Android version. And since Google hasn't mandated in-app purchasing as Apple has, Google's position may be different. Dunno. Suppose we'll all wait a while and find out.
melior diabolus quem scies
Reply
melior diabolus quem scies
Reply
post #10 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

Except that the best information we have indicates that Apple licensed it under a blanket license that covers a large number of patents, meaning that they probably got the license for each individual patent pretty cheaply, making it not worth delving deeply into the validity of each.

In other words, you can't necessarily conclude anything about the patent's specificity or validity from the fact that it's licensed to Apple. I'm sure you know all this, so no reason to toss BS around on the forum.

What are you talking about? The original comment pointed out that the title of the patent comes across as exceedingly broad. I was merely pointing out that Apple licensed it rather than litigating it, which leads one to believe that the actual patent itself is at least reasonably well done. I haven't read the patent, have you?

As to your point about a blanket license, that wasn't included in this story, was it? You're also suggesting that Apple's attorney's didn't do a very good job of vetting the patents that they were licensing, which I also doubt given the important to Apple and the iOS ecosystem of in-app purchasing. It certainly could be that the licensing cost was low enough that they decided it wasn't worth litigating, but I think's it reasonable to assume that the patent isn't ridiculous.

We could also see an attempt to invalidate the patent as a result of this, though it seems like the original decision to license it would work against Apple.

I think it's probably the case that patent holder knew going into the licensing agreement that they were going to try and do this, and did their best to write an agreement where it was possible. It may never have crossed Apple's mind that this would be an issue, and so we are where we are.
post #11 of 49
As a side note, my opinion is that Apple is likely to get partially screwed in this one.

Lodsys has to have anticipated that Apple will get involved in this manner. I think that they probably have a pretty tight case, and I bet that Apple knows it too. Apple has no choice to get involved.

My hypothesis is that the best that they can do is to say to Lodsys, "this is going to cost a lot of time and energy to work out in court, sit back down at the table with us and we'll see what we can do about an extended licensing agreement." This is probably what Lodsys wants anyway. $5k on $1M in-app sales doesn't sound like enough money to me to be worth the added legal and bookkeeping fees to manage so many licensees. Getting a good agreement with Apple, which already manages all of the in-app purchases for their own reasons, would be much better for Lodsys in the long run.
post #12 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by jukes View Post

As a side note, my opinion is that Apple is likely to get partially screwed in this one.

Lodsys has to have anticipated that Apple will get involved in this manner. I think that they probably have a pretty tight case, and I bet that Apple knows it too. Apple has no choice to get involved.

My hypothesis is that the best that they can do is to say to Lodsys, "this is going to cost a lot of time and energy to work out in court, sit back down at the table with us and we'll see what we can do about an extended licensing agreement." This is probably what Lodsys wants anyway. $5k on $1M in-app sales doesn't sound like enough money to me to be worth the added legal and bookkeeping fees to manage so many licensees. Getting a good agreement with Apple, which already manages all of the in-app purchases for their own reasons, would be much better for Lodsys in the long run.

Or Lodsys may just be betting on the ineptitude of our legal system. They are doing this out of Marshall, TX after all.
post #13 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post

AFAIK, the only Android app included in the suit was written by an Apple developer who just happened to also have an Android version. And since Google hasn't mandated in-app purchasing as Apple has, Google's position may be different. Dunno. Suppose we'll all wait a while and find out.

...so if you write FIRST for Apple's platform, and THEN you write an app for Android, you aren't REALLY an Android developer, just an Android wannabe developer? Just curious if you were dismissing this developer ( and the hundreds of other developers who jumped on the Apple ecosystem first before turning around and bringing their apps to Android) because they weren't a "pure" Android/Android only dev.
If you are going to insist on being an ass, at least demonstrate the intelligence to be a smart one
Reply
If you are going to insist on being an ass, at least demonstrate the intelligence to be a smart one
Reply
post #14 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by esummers View Post

Or Lodsys may just be betting on the ineptitude of our legal system. They are doing this out of Marshall, TX after all.

Maybe. Though they may just be aware of the potential for an invalidation attempt so have proactively filed there, knowing that it will be relevant to Apple's reaction. Does Apple really want to litigate a patent in East Texas, given the precedence they set when they licensed the patent originally? I don't think that East Texas is known as a hotbed for contract/licensing disputes.

It seems more plausible to me that they just want leverage with Apple to force a favorable renegotiation of the license agreement. It may also be the case that the existing agreement is so bad for Lodsys that they feel like it's worth the risk of having to pay Apple's lawyer fees for the suit if they lose (they'll still have the original licensing income).

That's why I love rumor sights. Anything could be true.
post #15 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by jukes View Post

Maybe. Though they may just be aware of the potential for an invalidation attempt so have proactively filed there, knowing that it will be relevant to Apple's reaction. Does Apple really want to litigate a patent in East Texas, given the precedence they set when they licensed the patent originally? I don't think that East Texas is known as a hotbed for contract/licensing disputes.

It seems more plausible to me that they just want leverage with Apple to force a favorable renegotiation of the license agreement. It may also be the case that the existing agreement is so bad for Lodsys that they feel like it's worth the risk of having to pay Apple's lawyer fees for the suit if they lose (they'll still have the original licensing income).

That's why I love rumor sights. Anything could be true.

You think Lodsys is confident? You should see whom they sued.
post #16 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by jukes View Post

As a side note, my opinion is that Apple is likely to get partially screwed in this one.

Lodsys has to have anticipated that Apple will get involved in this manner. I think that they probably have a pretty tight case, and I bet that Apple knows it too. Apple has no choice to get involved.

My hypothesis is that the best that they can do is to say to Lodsys, "this is going to cost a lot of time and energy to work out in court, sit back down at the table with us and we'll see what we can do about an extended licensing agreement." This is probably what Lodsys wants anyway. $5k on $1M in-app sales doesn't sound like enough money to me to be worth the added legal and bookkeeping fees to manage so many licensees. Getting a good agreement with Apple, which already manages all of the in-app purchases for their own reasons, would be much better for Lodsys in the long run.

I don't know, given everything reported so far, there are a couple of different scenarios playing out here - they may (like Nokia for example - and what I think you are alluding to here) be trying to leverage more money from the licensing they originally did with Apple for this. I don't think that they will be able to successfully argue the dev level suits as legitimate , but they were a means to the end of leveraging more money directly from Apple - its not a "tight case" for hitting the devs - but it is a clever way of getting Apple's attention. HOWEVER, it remains to be seen if Apple will allow this sort of blackmail to be successful - potentially then any IP holding org could go after the devs first to try to get a profitable response out of Apple. I think it is in Apple's best interest to publically make this a very painful experience for Lodsys, to prevent others from trying this same approach with them.
If you are going to insist on being an ass, at least demonstrate the intelligence to be a smart one
Reply
If you are going to insist on being an ass, at least demonstrate the intelligence to be a smart one
Reply
post #17 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by matrix07 View Post

You think Lodsys is confident? You should see whom they sued.

I assume they sued people completely unable to defend themselves.

My point is that this is guaranteed to get Apple involved, and the only reason that I can see that Lodsys would want this is as leverage towards renegotiating a more lucrative agreement with Apple. Sorry if that wasn't obvious.
post #18 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by jukes View Post

What are you talking about? The original comment pointed out that the title of the patent comes across as exceedingly broad. I was merely pointing out that Apple licensed it rather than litigating it, which leads one to believe that the actual patent itself is at least reasonably well done. I haven't read the patent, have you?

As to your point about a blanket license, that wasn't included in this story, was it? You're also suggesting that Apple's attorney's didn't do a very good job of vetting the patents that they were licensing. ...

No, I'm not suggesting anything of the sort. But, you are simply repeating yourself here, and the conclusions you are pushing are unsupported, so your comments are just rank speculation without foundation. That's what I'm pointing out.
post #19 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by fecklesstechguy View Post

I don't know, given everything reported so far, there are a couple of different scenarios playing out here - they may (like Nokia for example - and what I think you are alluding to here) be trying to leverage more money from the licensing they originally did with Apple for this. I don't think that they will be able to successfully argue the dev level suits as legitimate , but they were a means to the end of leveraging more money directly from Apple - its not a "tight case" for hitting the devs - but it is a clever way of getting Apple's attention. HOWEVER, it remains to be seen if Apple will allow this sort of blackmail to be successful - potentially then any IP holding org could go after the devs first to try to get a profitable response out of Apple. I think it is in Apple's best interest to publically make this a very painful experience for Lodsys, to prevent others from trying this same approach with them.

This is exactly what my fear is with all of this. This is nothing more than a form of Blackmail. I think it would be in Apple's best interest to go after Lodsys with all guns blazing, and just blow them out of the water. Also, it may set a precedent to help stop some of these "obvious" patents from being used as a way to extort money. That last part is wishful thinking, but one can hope.... Right??
-- Mike Eggleston
-- Mac Finatic since 1984.
-- Proud Member of PETA: People Eating Tasty Animals
-- Wii #: 8913 3004 4519 2027
Reply
-- Mike Eggleston
-- Mac Finatic since 1984.
-- Proud Member of PETA: People Eating Tasty Animals
-- Wii #: 8913 3004 4519 2027
Reply
post #20 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by fecklesstechguy View Post

I don't know, given everything reported so far, there are a couple of different scenarios playing out here - they may (like Nokia for example - and what I think you are alluding to here) be trying to leverage more money from the licensing they originally did with Apple for this.

This is the only thing that makes sense to me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fecklesstechguy View Post

I don't think that they will be able to successfully argue the dev level suits as legitimate , but they were a means to the end of leveraging more money directly from Apple - its not a "tight case" for hitting the devs - but it is a clever way of getting Apple's attention.

Well, knowing that Apple---and their expensive lawyers---will be involved, and their reputation of begin both aggressive and competent, my guess that they must be fairly confident.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fecklesstechguy View Post

HOWEVER, it remains to be seen if Apple will allow this sort of blackmail to be successful - potentially then any IP holding org could go after the devs first to try to get a profitable response out of Apple. I think it is in Apple's best interest to publically make this a very painful experience for Lodsys, to prevent others from trying this same approach with them.

I agree completely. And unless Lodsys is run by a bunch of idiots, they know this too. Which is where my hypothesis that Apple is likely to get screwed here came from. Though the "any IP holding org" is probably too strong, it's just the ones that hold patents on the fundamental techs that are part of the iOS ecosystem that are an issue for Apple, e.g., Apple wouldn't get involved if someone sued a voice-recognition app because it uses a patented algorithm, etc.
post #21 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

No, I'm not suggesting anything of the sort. But, you are simply repeating yourself here, and the conclusions you are pushing are unsupported, so your comments are just rank speculation without foundation. That's what I'm pointing out.

You're pointing out that I am just speculating on a sight that specializes in speculation about Apple? I'm sure everyone thanks you for your vigilance.

Also you seem to have overlooked the fact that my original post had nothing to do with Lodsys, but was merely pointing out that you can't tell much about a patent from its title, and that we have circumstantial evidence that it was a legitimate patent, given that Apple licensed it (even as part of a batch).

The part about Lodsys' motivation and Apple's predicament are obviously complete speculation on my part.
post #22 of 49
I'm proud that Apple licensed this in the first place to provide a safe development platform for us and second that when that was threatened, Apple is standing up for us. Enough said. (i.e. someone said Lodsys must have thought in advance, well I'm sure Apple did too. That's why they licensed in the first place.)
post #23 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by fecklesstechguy View Post

...so if you write FIRST for Apple's platform, and THEN you write an app for Android, you aren't REALLY an Android developer, just an Android wannabe developer? Just curious if you were dismissing this developer ( and the hundreds of other developers who jumped on the Apple ecosystem first before turning around and bringing their apps to Android) because they weren't a "pure" Android/Android only dev.

No not at all. I was noting that Lodsys hasn't targeted Android developers as such. . . yet. The Android app mentioned in this case actually came from an iOS developer. As for whether the lawsuits against Android developer's are all written up and just waiting for a trigger, I don't know anymore than anyone else.
melior diabolus quem scies
Reply
melior diabolus quem scies
Reply
post #24 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by jukes View Post

I assume they sued people completely unable to defend themselves.

My point is that this is guaranteed to get Apple involved, and the only reason that I can see that Lodsys would want this is as leverage towards renegotiating a more lucrative agreement with Apple. Sorry if that wasn't obvious.

It's obvious but it's just half of the story. Another half might be that Lodsys would bet Apple, being big and greedy as it is, might not get involved, or too busy to get involved, if we just sue some small devs who's not affect to Apple's pocket much).
post #25 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by urbansprawl View Post

I'm proud that Apple licensed this in the first place to provide a safe development platform for us and second that when that was threatened, Apple is standing up for us.

What choice do they have? I'm serious... I don't think they have a choice.

Quote:
Originally Posted by urbansprawl View Post

Enough said. (i.e. someone said Lodsys must have thought in advance, well I'm sure Apple did too. That's why they licensed in the first place.)

We can always hope.
post #26 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by matrix07 View Post

It's obvious but it's just half of the story. Another half might be that Lodsys would bet Apple, being big and greedy as it is, might not get involved, or too busy to get involved, if we just sue some small devs who's not affect to Apple's pocket much).

Sure. But negotiating, administering, and or suing that many licensing agreements is a large problem. Particularly for small-time accounts that may only bring in $500 bucks over their lifetime. I guess they could just target the big guys, but that seems likely to bring Apple in, which we would be assuming they were trying to avoid.
post #27 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by jukes View Post

I guess they could just target the big guys, but that seems likely to bring Apple in, which we would be assuming they were trying to avoid.

I'm not sure I follow you here. I just thought in your opinion Lodsys is very confident and want to only drag Apple to court for a big pay-off?
post #28 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by matrix07 View Post

I'm not sure I follow you here. I just thought in your opinion Lodsys is very confident and want to drag Apple to court for a big pay-off?

Right.

I was responding to the hypothesis that they would just go after devs in court, hoping not to get Apple involved. I was saying this probably doesn't pay in the long run unless you target some of the more successful devs, but if successful devs are sued this is likely to defeat the purpose of keeping Apple on the sidelines.
post #29 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by jukes View Post

Right.

I was responding to the hypothesis that they would just go after devs in court, hoping not to get Apple involved. I was saying this probably doesn't pay in the long run unless you target some of the more successful devs, but if successful devs are sued this is likely to defeat the purpose of keeping Apple on the sidelines.

Ah... I see.
post #30 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by matrix07 View Post

I'm not sure I follow you here. I just thought in your opinion Lodsys is very confident and want to only drag Apple to court for a big pay-off?

My theory is that Lodsys was hoping to get a quick judgement from the court against the smaller guys who couldn't defend themselves well, then sue the guys with deep pockets after they had a prior judgement to give weight to their claim.
post #31 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


"The app developers whom Lodsys sued appear to be bound by a non-disclosure agreement (which makes sense), so they can't speak out on their current relationship with Apple," Mueller wrote in his blog on Friday. "While I don't have any confirmation from anyone that Apple has agreed to cover those defendants' costs and potential risks, it's hard to imagine how else this could work.

I'm not a lawyer of any kind but I can clearly see the method in Apple's madness.

They will get themselves entered into the suit and then immediately file for a summary judgement and dismissal on the grounds that they are paying for the licensing on behalf of all their developers and have been since day one. They will also likely ask that Lodsys be made to pay any court costs incurred by the other defendants since the suits should have never been filed in the first place.


Quote:
Originally Posted by John.B View Post

Google would do the same thing for their devs, right? Right?!? (crickets chirping...)

Not at all. They set the rules differently. Mainly in the sense that they make a lot fewer and let developers pretty much have total control and total responsibility.

Apple wants folks to use the IAP system. They are ramming it down developers throats left and right. First with their "if you want to let folks pay outside, you must let them pay inside also" stuff. Soon they will probably force games etc to dump the whole "free" and "paid" separate versions and make one single version with all upgrades inside the app. Valid or invalid patent aside they did license the tech and according to them the deal includes the developers and that is why they are stepping up.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jukes View Post

What are you talking about? The original comment pointed out that the title of the patent comes across as exceedingly broad. I was merely pointing out that Apple licensed it rather than litigating it, which leads one to believe that the actual patent itself is at least reasonably well done.

I wouldn't count on that. At the time that the patent was approved the landscape could have been very different. Which may be why a vague idea patent was approved. But times have changed and case law is changing the rules of play. And under those new rules, this patent might not be so 'valid' anymore. Allowing it to continue stifle the very invention process that patents are supposed to be promoting and protecting.

Also I recall reading some where that the deal was actually with another company that Lodsys bought out and it was an R&D investment by Apple and a handful of other companies in exchange for use of all existing and developed patents by said company for the investors and their partners for the length of all patents for a preset cost. And Lodsys had to agree to honor this when they bought the patents. I can't find the link now but I do remember thinking that it sounded like something Apple would do (especially the Apple of 10 or so years ago when apparently it happened). And if this was the case then this patent might have not actually been in existence at the time that Apple signed the deal. So they wouldn't have needed to review anything. The terms were set and they had already agreed to paid (and perhaps already did)


Quote:
Originally Posted by David808 View Post

My theory is that Lodsys was hoping to get a quick judgement from the court against the smaller guys who couldn't defend themselves well, then sue the guys with deep pockets after they had a prior judgement to give weight to their claim.

Actually I think it was a slightly different deal. Cause the bigger guys with the deep pockets are Apple and Lodsys admits they have a proper license. The issue is if it covers the developers. Apple says yes, Lodsys says not no but hell no now pay up.
I think that they went after the little guys stupidly thinking that the letter would scare them into agreeing to pay to avoid a law suit. They didn't count on the power of Twitter etc for word to get to Apple. And now they were hoping to again scare the little guys into settling fast and with little outrage. But of course that power of Twitter etc got the word out and Apple is standing by their statement. They have to now that the letter is out there (and I think they were a source of that leak if only for the positive PR). They likely knew this the moment they sent the letter which is why they took the week to review the paperwork and be sure they knew what they were saying. If the deal hadn't clearly included the 'partners' they would have likely stepped up admitted that they had intended for it to and they are the ones that should be paying and worked out a new deal, etc

A non tech's thoughts on Apple stuff 

(She's family so I'm a little biased)

Reply

A non tech's thoughts on Apple stuff 

(She's family so I'm a little biased)

Reply
post #32 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by jukes View Post

You're pointing out that I am just speculating on a sight that specializes in speculation about Apple? I'm sure everyone thanks you for your vigilance.

Also you seem to have overlooked the fact that my original post had nothing to do with Lodsys, but was merely pointing out that you can't tell much about a patent from its title, and that we have circumstantial evidence that it was a legitimate patent, given that Apple licensed it (even as part of a batch).

The part about Lodsys' motivation and Apple's predicament are obviously complete speculation on my part.

And I'm pointing out that you don't know how to reason logically, and that your "circumstantial evidence" doesn't exist as such.
post #33 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by matrix07 View Post

Ah... I see.

By the way, I noticed you had quote marks around something that wasn't an actual quote from Vic Gundotra in your sig. Did you intentionally replace "act" with "copy"? Kinda changes the whole meaning.
melior diabolus quem scies
Reply
melior diabolus quem scies
Reply
post #34 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

And I'm pointing out that you don't know how to reason logically, and that your "circumstantial evidence" doesn't exist as such.

Ah, I see.

[CP]->[Edit Ignore List]
post #35 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

I just hope that this isn't a situation similar to the one where they licensed the use of overlapping windows and other System features to Microsoft many years ago for the purpose of Microsoft writing programs for Apple, but where the wording was not specific enough so that MS stole those features for Windows, and when Apple took them to court, they lost.

If that's the case with Lodsys's portion, then Apple could be in the right, but if Apple is wrong here, because of sloppy legal work, Lodsys could hold the cards.

We won't know this for a while.

Sloppy in what sense? That it's ambiguous? If that is the case, why would Lodsys have any advantage? Ambiguous means it could equally be argued that Apple's interpretation is correct.

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
Reply

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
Reply
post #36 of 49
Apple hasn't mandated in-app purchasing. It is an option. The developer could have somebody buy outside the app as well. In app purchasing was just offered as a way of convenience.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post

AFAIK, the only Android app included in the suit was written by an Apple developer who just happened to also have an Android version. And since Google hasn't mandated in-app purchasing as Apple has, Google's position may be different. Dunno. Suppose we'll all wait a while and find out.
post #37 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by jukes View Post

Ah, I see.

[CP]->[Edit Ignore List]

Yes, the best way to remain ignorant and uninformed is to simply ignore the facts and make up whatever "truth" feels good to you.
post #38 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by jukes View Post

I assume they sued people completely unable to defend themselves.

My point is that this is guaranteed to get Apple involved, and the only reason that I can see that Lodsys would want this is as leverage towards renegotiating a more lucrative agreement with Apple. Sorry if that wasn't obvious.

Blanket Patent agreements don't get renegotiated.
post #39 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by charlituna View Post

I'm not a lawyer of any kind but I can clearly see the method in Apple's madness.

They will get themselves entered into the suit and then immediately file for a summary judgement and dismissal on the grounds that they are paying for the licensing on behalf of all their developers and have been since day one. They will also likely ask that Lodsys be made to pay any court costs incurred by the other defendants since the suits should have never been filed in the first place.




Not at all. They set the rules differently. Mainly in the sense that they make a lot fewer and let developers pretty much have total control and total responsibility.

Apple wants folks to use the IAP system. They are ramming it down developers throats left and right. First with their "if you want to let folks pay outside, you must let them pay inside also" stuff. Soon they will probably force games etc to dump the whole "free" and "paid" separate versions and make one single version with all upgrades inside the app. Valid or invalid patent aside they did license the tech and according to them the deal includes the developers and that is why they are stepping up.



I wouldn't count on that. At the time that the patent was approved the landscape could have been very different. Which may be why a vague idea patent was approved. But times have changed and case law is changing the rules of play. And under those new rules, this patent might not be so 'valid' anymore. Allowing it to continue stifle the very invention process that patents are supposed to be promoting and protecting.

Also I recall reading some where that the deal was actually with another company that Lodsys bought out and it was an R&D investment by Apple and a handful of other companies in exchange for use of all existing and developed patents by said company for the investors and their partners for the length of all patents for a preset cost. And Lodsys had to agree to honor this when they bought the patents. I can't find the link now but I do remember thinking that it sounded like something Apple would do (especially the Apple of 10 or so years ago when apparently it happened). And if this was the case then this patent might have not actually been in existence at the time that Apple signed the deal. So they wouldn't have needed to review anything. The terms were set and they had already agreed to paid (and perhaps already did)




Actually I think it was a slightly different deal. Cause the bigger guys with the deep pockets are Apple and Lodsys admits they have a proper license. The issue is if it covers the developers. Apple says yes, Lodsys says not no but hell no now pay up.
I think that they went after the little guys stupidly thinking that the letter would scare them into agreeing to pay to avoid a law suit. They didn't count on the power of Twitter etc for word to get to Apple. And now they were hoping to again scare the little guys into settling fast and with little outrage. But of course that power of Twitter etc got the word out and Apple is standing by their statement. They have to now that the letter is out there (and I think they were a source of that leak if only for the positive PR). They likely knew this the moment they sent the letter which is why they took the week to review the paperwork and be sure they knew what they were saying. If the deal hadn't clearly included the 'partners' they would have likely stepped up admitted that they had intended for it to and they are the ones that should be paying and worked out a new deal, etc

Alright, so this whole thing ticked me off enough to actually register and stop lurking and make a post on this topic.

So I skimmed over the patent, and found out that this patent basically covers the "Rate This App" before deleting feature that applications use to send rankings back to Apple's app store. Take a look at the pdf at http://www.freepatentsonline.com/7222078.pdf and you'll see in the first figure a fax machine displaying a message: "How much did you like or dislike the method you just used to program the fax machine's user settings."

This patent has nothing to do with in-app purchases, only "perceptions" or the user's ranking of the app.

Simply asking a user to rate the app and then sending them to the app store to rate the app WOULD NOT be covered, as the patent covers only the method within the "commodity" (ie, app) to collect the user's perception (ie, ranking) of the commodity (app) and transmit that data back to a so-called "central location" (ie, the app store).

Boom. Apple licensed this patent, and because Apple provides this rank before deleting feature to developers in the SDK, this suit should be thrown out.
post #40 of 49
I just don't see $5K on $1M as being unreasonable. If I'm an App developer, I'm willing to pay $5K for every $1M just to make this go away. Sure, the patent is vague bull$hit, but they do own the patent and Apple felt it strong enough to license, so why put your company at risk? What am I missing?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: iPhone
AppleInsider › Forums › Mobile › iPhone › Apple files motion to intervene in Lodsys suit against iOS developers