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Palm to Apple: We'll "vigorously" defend our IP, too

post #1 of 114
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Facing a potential legal showdown with Apple over its new multi-touch Pre handset, Palm this week vowed to fight back tooth and nail.

During Apple's fiscal first quarter earnings call Wednesday a Wall Street analyst probed company executives on how they planned to maintain their lead in the smartphone sector.Â*

Acting chief executive Tim Cook quickly replied by saying it's difficult to judge products that haven't entered the market yet, while the iPhone has sold more than 17 million units.Â*He added that Apple is confident with where it is competitively, adding, "As long as [competitors] don't rip off our [intellectual property], and if they do, we'll go after anybody that does."

Asked if he was referring his comments to Palm, Cook's said:

I'm not talking about any specific company.Â* I'm just making a general statement.Â* We think competition is good, it makes us better.Â* But we will not stand to have our IP ripped off.Â* We'll use whatever weapons we have at our disposal.Â* I don't know that I can be more clear than that.

The PreÂ*made its debut at this month's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas with a multi-touch interface that lets users pinch their fingers together and spread them apart on the screen to navigate websites.Â* It appears Apple has targeted that aspect of Palm's yet-unreleased Pre, which has a slide-out keyboard and a new operating system called webOS.

"Apple was not the first to do multi-touch," Palm spokeswoman Lynn FoxÂ*toldÂ*Reuters.Â* She argued that multi-touch has been around for more than 20 years.

"Palm has been building its own intellectual property portfolio for 15 years, and we will defend it vigorously, if necessary," she added.

In separate comments to All Things Digital, she said: "We have long been recognized for our fundamental patents in the mobile space.Â* If faced with legal action, we are confident that we have the tools necessary to defend ourselves."



Many analysts believe the Pre must succeed in order for Palm to survive.Â* The company now has former Apple employees in key positions, including Jon Rubinstein, once the head of hardware engineering for the Cupertino-based iPhone maker. Â*

Rubinstein helped lead the creation of the iPod and development of the iMac at Apple, and most likely had some knowledge of the iPhone. Â*Palm's Director of Software Chris McKillop also worked on the iPhone and iPod development teams.

While those two are the most recognizable, they're not the only Palm employees to cross over. Â*Those connections may play a major role in any potential legal battle between the two companies.

Following Cook's comments on Wednesday, shares of Palm dipped 3.4 percent to $7.57.Â*Analysts pointed to Cook's comments as a likely cause.

If Apple elects to take legal action, it could happen soon.Â* The Pre is expected to hit the market sometime in the first half of this year.
post #2 of 114
Fight! Fight! Fight!

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post #3 of 114
Just buy out the company ($822M market cap) with that pool of cash($28.1B) you have sitting there, take whatever is usable, and give a good scolding to all former employees.
post #4 of 114
This is all so incredibly stupid.

Apple has said *nothing* about Palm or the Palm pre and nothing about Palm violating their patents, that was all the work of the "industry analysts." These same industry analysts that are responsible for the 3-4% drop in Palm stock are the ones responsible for the huge drop in Apple's share value by means of all that nonsense about Steve Jobs' health.

Where do these guys get off making these absurd unsupported statements that send stock values plunging all over the world?

Why is the SEC willing to investigate Apple and read internal company memos etc., in a bid to find out what Steve "really" said to the board about his health, but any "Joe the Tech Analyst" can set up shop on the web and push any rumour or story they want with total immunity from any kind of prosecution?
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post #5 of 114
Can Palm afford a protracted legal battle?

They seem to be in a very vulnerable position to me.
post #6 of 114
The webOS user interface has the iPhone beat in many areas but Palm doesn't have the integrated ecosystem that Apple does with OS X, notebooks, iPods, iTunes, AppStore etc. Maybe Apple should consider buying them, it might be less expensive than fighting it out in court.

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post #7 of 114
Palm can't even afford production and marketing of the pre which probably implements some elements that are ripped off Apple IP.

Sometimes companies deliberately and knowingly take calculated risks by blatantly using patents that are not theirs in the hopes of forcing some licensing or other negotiation that will enable a compromise...(such as the iPhone name episode that Apple dared Cisco in...)

In this case, though, Palm is really playing with fire because there's no way Apple will allow cannibalization of any part of the iPhone which has been a revolutionary product that Apple has confidently announced is "years ahead of the competition".

Apple cannot and will not concede even an inch to Palm which cannot afford any protracted litigation. It's also very likely that Apple would get a temporary preliminary injunction against Palm from the outset, which would stop any sales of the pre and prevent it from even getting to market.
post #8 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

The webOS user interface has the iPhone beat in many areas ...

I keep hearing people say this, but I've never heard anyone back it up.

How are webapps, which also run on the iPhone "beating" the iPhone? How is inbox integration or IM integration, a big competitive deal when it can be imitated on the iPhone by Apple in an afternoon's coding and already is on the iPhone in the form of some third party apps?

I think the pre is the first serious challenger to iPhone, but to imply that it "beats" iPhone as many are doing is a bit disingenuous IMO. It's not even out of beta for cripes sake, and no one has really even used it yet.
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post #9 of 114
What a bunch of copycats, trying to defend something they didn't create. I wanna see them defend the zooming and flicking through photographs as their own User Interface.
Apple had me at scrolling
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Apple had me at scrolling
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post #10 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

The webOS user interface has the iPhone beat in many areas

Yes because much of it is copied from iPhone User Interface. I wouldn't worry too much about Palm. They lost their hype long time ago. They might get 5% of the customers back.
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post #11 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by Virgil-TB2 View Post

I keep hearing people say this, but I've never heard anyone back it up.

How are webapps, which also run on the iPhone "beating" the iPhone? How is inbox integration or IM integration, a big competitive deal when it can be imitated on the iPhone by Apple in an afternoon's coding and already is on the iPhone in the form of some third party apps?

I think the pre is the first serious challenger to iPhone, but to imply that it "beats" iPhone as many are doing is a bit disingenuous IMO. It's not even out of beta for cripes sake, and no one has really even used it yet.


I own an iPhone and have only seen the pre in demos but I was impressed with both the hardware and the OS/user interface on the pre. I would like to see similar improvements on the iPhone. That's all I'm saying, I'm definitely not in the market for a new mobile device primarily because I love the seamless integration with all of the other Apple hardware and service I use daily.

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post #12 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by iVlad View Post

Yes because much of it is copied from iPhone User Interface. I wouldn't worry too much about Palm. They lost their hype long time ago. They might get 5% of the customers back.

I see nothing in WebOS that looks like it was copied from the iphone. Multitasking, synergy? A gesture area that extends below the screen itself, a "wave" dock? Yeah totally ripped from the iphone (sacrasm). :rollsyes:
The only thing Apple might have them on is the similar multitouch. What people do not understand is that Apple is just running one implementation of multitouch which happens to be named "multi-touch".

I wish they would fight it out so that the public would learn more about that group of technologies. And it wouldn't just be Apple vs Palm. It will be Apple vs Palm's financial backers.
post #13 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by Virgil-TB2 View Post

I keep hearing people say this, but I've never heard anyone back it up.

How are webapps, which also run on the iPhone "beating" the iPhone? How is inbox integration or IM integration, a big competitive deal when it can be imitated on the iPhone by Apple in an afternoon's coding and already is on the iPhone in the form of some third party apps?

I think the pre is the first serious challenger to iPhone, but to imply that it "beats" iPhone as many are doing is a bit disingenuous IMO. It's not even out of beta for cripes sake, and no one has really even used it yet.

I'm curious about this too. I don't debate the idea, I just want some data on the areas that people feel that the Pre bests Apple.

PS: I'm glad to see Palm moving away from WinMo-based devices and having a product that is exciting for what it is. I figured bedding with MS would be the death of them, but I hope they rise again.
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post #14 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

... I'm glad to see Palm moving away from WinMo-based devices and having a product that is exciting for what it is. I figured bedding with MS would be the death of them, but I hope they rise again.

Agreed. Sadly however, Palm being acquired by Microsoft is also a likely option right now although I would rather see Riim do it if anyone does.
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post #15 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by Virgil-TB2 View Post

Apple has said *nothing* about Palm or the Palm pre and nothing about Palm violating their patents, that was all the work of the "industry analysts."

Apple's COO Tim Cook made a couple of related brief comments about "going after" those who "rip off our IP" during their quarterly conference call Wednesday when asked about the Palm Pre.

It's all a bunch of posturing. Palm is correct, multi-touch is nothing new. Both Apple and Palm have a bunch of patents from the early days of handheld devices, so they will inevitably reach some kind of agreement, if something they already have in place doesn't apply.
post #16 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by pmjoe View Post

It's all a bunch of posturing. Palm is correct, multi-touch is nothing new. Both Apple and Palm have a bunch of patents from the early days of handheld devices, so they will inevitably reach some kind of agreement, if something they already have in place doesn't apply.

It's not posturing, companies should and will defend their IP. You can't just throw all multi-touch together as one as the method can be very different. Apple's capacitance touchscreen tech was purchased and it's a patent that they need to hold onto vigorously as all other current touchscreen tech, IMO, sucks in comparison. The only downfall of Apple's method is that you can't wear gloves or have wet finger when using it.
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post #17 of 114
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Originally Posted by Rot'nApple View Post

Fight! Fight! Fight!



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post #18 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

* It appears Apple has targeted that aspect of Palm's yet-unreleased Pre, which has a slide-out keyboard and a new operating system called webOS.

Am I missing something?
post #19 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by pmjoe View Post

Apple's COO Tim Cook made a couple of related brief comments about "going after" those who "rip off our IP" during their quarterly conference call Wednesday when asked about the Palm Pre.

Yes, but he didn't mention Palm specifically. He said he was talking about ANYONE. The analysts are the ones that brought up Palm, not Apple, and then they extrapolated from Cook's response and said "Apple is targeting Palm."
post #20 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by PersonMan View Post

Yes, but he didn't mention Palm specifically. He said he was talking about ANYONE. The analysts are the ones that brought up Palm, not Apple, and then they extrapolated from Cook's response and said "Apple is targeting Palm."

Wasn't Tim's statement a response to a question asked about the Pre? I don't see how that's an extrapolation unless you're saying that Tim Cook wasn't answering the question that was asked.
post #21 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

The only downfall of Apple's method is that you can't wear gloves or have wet finger when using it.

That is exactly how I use the iPhone with gloves on. I lick the fingertip of the glove, which works just well enough to answer the phone but not much more than that, otherwise I agree, that is a disadvantage of the capacitance implementation. Salt water also works if you happen to have any handy.

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post #22 of 114
If Microsoft ripped off the iPhone UI in Windows Mobile, would Apple go after them, or would they turn a blind eye in case Baller throws a tantrum and kills Office for the Mac.


Personally I wouldnt care. Its time Apple bundled OpenOffice with the Mac and killed MS Office itself
post #23 of 114
Had to throw my oar in.

I don't think anything will come of it.

Looking at Mr Cook's comments it is clear that yes Apple will do their bit to maintain healthy revenue growth through legal combat with a company who is a threat to that end. But Palm is no threat, on the contrary.

Apple thrives in it's present state, as it has mostly done, as the subversively superior alternative. Global dominance and market control opens companies up to all sorts of lovely comebacks. FIlling shareholders coffers is lovely, but wisdom will tell you that major boom equals major bust, eventually. Apple is a shrewdly, deliberately and exclusively run outfit. Hence why we are not all running out to buy an Apple branded netbook or celebrating a repeat of Apples last press reveal at this years MacWorld .

Apple could very well take out Palm, but it is NOT in their interests to do so, up until the point that Palm could/would be snatched.

The IPhone is already in danger, as the iPod was before it, of market recognition based saturated overkill. And no market picks up on this like the British. When something is fantastically good and new and fresh we want one. But if everyone has one, is it new anymore? Or is it just a Walkman? Or a shell suit? Or a PC?

Palm, as a competitor, is exactly what Apple needs, alongside RIM. As a pack they can each distinguish themselves, separating the market and creating healthy competition. Killing Palm, or even throwing that into the media would be a bad move. In my opinion.
post #24 of 114
He didn't say Palm. In my opinion, Palm saw this as a free publicity for their new phone. I don't think Apple need to worry about Palm, who are about to dig their own grave with Sprint. They will probably sell few Pre phones but not enough to keep them in business. Based on their CEO comment about the planned price they will not even reach Android sales figures.
post #25 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

That is exactly how I use the iPhone with gloves on. I lick the fingertip of the glove, which works just well enough to answer the phone but not much more than that, otherwise I agree, that is a disadvantage of the capacitance implementation. Salt water also works if you happen to have any handy.

That is a clever workaround. Have you considering buying a stylus that imitates a finger's electrical output? You can't do multitouch, unless you're really good at holding chopsticks, but such a device would give [you] more control that licking your gloves.
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post #26 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

You can't do multitouch, unless you're really good at holding chopsticks, but such a device would give me more control that licking your gloves.

There is one other person I would let lick my gloves, but it is not you.

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post #27 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

There is one other person I would let lick my gloves, but it is not you.


I didn't know what you were talking about until I reread my post. I'll have to fix the wording.
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post #28 of 114
China was selling illegal copies of the iphone way before it was available in China and other parts of Asia , also ipod copies still on sale.
I think that they , Apple should be able to do this but should also look at the other copies.
Just look at Sanrio , hello kitty , here we have Japan thinking about what goods it could market globally to get it's economy going. To late there are so many hello kitty copies from china already on the market . They are dead in the water.

Apple spends the time and R&D only to find little known manufacturers trying to steel it all. Selling at a third of the price for the copied product, consumers no longer care they have fewer dollars to spend so they go for the copied product.
post #29 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

Wasn't Tim's statement a response to a question asked about the Pre? I don't see how that's an extrapolation unless you're saying that Tim Cook wasn't answering the question that was asked.

Tim was asked about how Apple would maintain it's position in the market in general. After he gave his answer about defending intellectual property an analyst asked if he was referring to the Pre. He specifically said he was not referring to any particular company or product so of course the analysts had reason to run with it and say "Apple is challenging Palm in court."
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post #30 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by OriginalG View Post

Just buy out the company ($822M market cap) with that pool of cash($28.1B) you have sitting there, take whatever is usable, and give a good scolding to all former employees.

Don't forget Palm's $397 million in debt Apple would have to assume.
post #31 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by tufnia View Post

d.

The IPhone is already in danger, as the iPod was before it, of market recognition based saturated overkill. And no market picks up on this like the British. When something is fantastically good and new and fresh we want one. But if everyone has one, is it new anymore? Or is it just a Walkman? Or a shell suit? Or a PC?

There may well be Brits and for that matter people from any country that are that shallow but to generalize a whole nation as such is ridiculous. iPhones are not just purchased by the brainless 'must have latest fashion' types. The vast majority of iPhone owners know a superior product when they see one.
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post #32 of 114
May I ask why?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Virgil-TB2 View Post

Agreed. Sadly however, Palm being acquired by Microsoft is also a likely option right now although I would rather see Riim do it if anyone does.
post #33 of 114
Who in their right mind would quit Apple to work for Palm?!

They must have been fired.
post #34 of 114
I don't think its fully understood that finger gesture based multi-touch is IP that Apple bought when it acquired FingerWorks. webOS clearly copies the iPhone's gesture based UI.

The question is whether Apple can patent the entire concept of swiping/flicking/pinching/double tapping finger based gestures. If Apple does defend these gestures, how would Palm have a valid patent on the same concept.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Olternaut View Post

I see nothing in WebOS that looks like it was copied from the iphone. Multitasking, synergy? A gesture area that extends below the screen itself, a "wave" dock? Yeah totally ripped from the iphone (sacrasm). :rollsyes:
The only thing Apple might have them on is the similar multitouch. What people do not understand is that Apple is just running one implementation of multitouch which happens to be named "multi-touch".
post #35 of 114
Which iPhone copy has ever come to market? Meizu has been showing a iPhone concept for the past two years but has not yet brought a working product to market. Of course if they ever did Apple would sue.

Quote:
Originally Posted by miquet View Post

China was selling illegal copies of the iphone way before it was available in China and other parts of Asia , also ipod copies still on sale.
post #36 of 114
I don't think Apple are saying they invented Multi touch, but if they invented a particular gesture and patented, fair enough it shouldn't be copied.
post #37 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackSummerNight View Post

May I ask why?

Not sure what your question is.

Why I think Microsoft would want to buy them is Windows Mobile is a crapfest of stellar proportions and they have done exactly these kind of buy-ins before.

Why I would prefer Riim is because Microsoft destroys everything it touches and I actually think the pre might be a nice competitive product. Riim would use it to keep themselves alive a bit longer and also be competition for Apple.

Riim might also be in danger of a take-over by Microsoft however because (IMO) Microsoft is still stuck in that "we must buy up some innovation" mode that worked for the 1990's and still has a ton of cash.

(Again IMO), Microsoft has to decide whether to get out of the mobile business altogether and fade quietly into the good night, or they need to buy a new platform. It might take the release (and probable failure) of WinMobile 6.5 for them to realise this though.
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post #38 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

Wasn't Tim's statement a response to a question asked about the Pre?

No, he made a statement about defending IP's. Someone asked if that meant the Palm Pre, and he responded "It's a general statement."
post #39 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

That is exactly how I use the iPhone with gloves on. I lick the fingertip of the glove...

I hope to hell you're not a proctologist!
post #40 of 114
Quote:
Microsoft has to decide whether to get out of the mobile business altogether and fade quietly into the good night, or they need to buy a new platform. It might take the release (and probable failure) of WinMobile 6.5 for them to realise this though.

Oh, they still have some brilliant ideas on how to make WinMo the best user experience evar!

http://www.pcpro.co.uk/news/245859/q...rn-to-drm.html
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