Apple's legal win over HTC pushes some Chinese vendors toward Windows Phone 7

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
The U.S. International Trade Commission's preliminary ruling in favor of Apple over rival HTC has caused concern for some Chinese handset makers who build Android-powered devices, prompting them to consider embracing Microsoft's next version of Windows Phone 7, dubbed "Mango."



China's 21st Century Business Herald revealed the fears that reportedly exist among Chinese smartphone vendors, along with white-box vendors, or those without a brand name. The report, summarized Tuesday by DigiTimes, notes that most of those companies create devices based on Google's free and open-sourced Android operating system.



The report indicated that smartphone vendors Huawei Device and ZTE, two of China's fastest growing Android-device makers, have planned to adopt Mango. In fact, a single Mango-powered device from ZTE was already shown off earlier this month.



Other options for overseas smartphone vendors are said to include self-development of their own new operating systems, or to embrace what the report called "promotion of smartphone customization by mobile telecom carriers for protection through binding common interest (especially carriers with Apple and Microsoft)."



But, according to the report, some China-based vendors see themselves as too small of a target for Apple or Microsoft. HTC's legal woes could pose an opportunity for white-box vendors, who could potentially cannibalize their rival's sales while maintaining a low profile.



In an initial ruling made last week, an ITC judge found that HTC has violated two patents owned by Apple. The judge's findings are still subject to review and final decision by the full commission.







On Monday, RBC Capital Markets analyst Mike Abramsky cautioned that Apple may leverage patent victories to establish a high royalty precedent for Android devices. Though significantly smaller than rival global players such as Motorola and Samsung, ZTE and Huawei are still at risk of having to pay royalties, he said.



One patent expert's analysis of the patents in question has revealed that the violations are part of Android's underlying architecture and may apply to "every Android device out there."
«13

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 45
    irnchrizirnchriz Posts: 1,589member
    This article is a bag of tosh. IF Apple succeed in their patent case against HTC they will be able to charge a royalty from companies who use Android. Normally royalty payments range from a few cents to a few dollars. It is incredibly unlikely that Apple would try to extort tens of dollars per device as this would get them in shit with the government for unfair business practices for trying to kill off android.



    What this article is stating is that to save paying a royalty for every handset sold these manufacturers will release windows phone 7 handsets instead, even though they will have to pay microsoft for every single handset sold???? what a load of bull.
  • Reply 2 of 45
    NOT FOR THE BENEFIT OF REDMOND!!!! but i agree with irnchris in the sense that he makes a good point. handset makers will go for what makes the most profit, not what takes the least royalty (which microsoft charges). Android is more popular, more people are looking for it, more money is in making a phone with it, it will continue to get made despite the small royalty.
  • Reply 3 of 45
    blastdoorblastdoor Posts: 1,928member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by irnchriz View Post


    This article is a bag of tosh. IF Apple succeed in their patent case against HTC they will be able to charge a royalty from companies who use Android. Normally royalty payments range from a few cents to a few dollars. What this article is stating is that to save paying a royalty for every handset sold these manufacturers will release windows phone 7 handsets instead, even though they will have to pay microsoft for every single handset sold???? what a load of bull.



    You don't know as much as you think you know.



    First, HTC is already paying money to Microsoft for every Android phone they sell. If they have to pay Apple even more money, that pushes them in the direction of deciding that it makes more sense just to pay money to MS for Windows Phone 7, which would also come with the added benefits of less uncertainty on future patent exposure.



    Second, what is "normal" for royalty payments is irrelevant here. Apple isn't interested in making money off of royalty payments. Apple is interested in eliminating competition. Unless those companies have patents of their own that Apple needs access to, Apple may refuse to grant a license, meaning that they simply cannot sell their products in the United States at any price.



    The main thing that will impede Android makers from switching to WP7 is if consumers simply refuse to buy the phones. But at this point, I suspect that there are a lot of OEMs out there that are getting pretty sick of Android and would love to be able to do a deal with MS -- if only people would buy the phones.
  • Reply 4 of 45
    shompashompa Posts: 343member
    Apple don't want to license it's technology. They Invent. They push forward. They move humanity forward.

    Steve Jobs is dying. He has billions. Why do he still work? He wants to make this world better with blockbusters like iMac, iPhone, iPad and soon the AppleLCDTV.



    HTC and other companies should do the same, innovate.

    It is not HTC culture. They have always been an OEM company for other telephone companies and used others IPs.



    If a small company like Palm could innovate a great OS like WebOS, then HTC should be able to do the same.



    Google also shows its company culture. Why do they not defend Android OS? Why do they not help all Android companies? These Android vendors now are forced to pay billions to Microsoft for protection.



    Apple Invents. Android Clone. Google buys Android = Profit Microsoft.
  • Reply 5 of 45
    blastdoorblastdoor Posts: 1,928member
    Apple needs to be careful here. Apple's goal should be to slow Android down, but not to kill it. If MS ever were to pull its head out of its a$$, it could be a much stronger competitor than Google.
  • Reply 6 of 45
    island hermitisland hermit Posts: 6,217member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by pooman625 View Post


    NOT FOR THE BENEFIT OF REDMOND!!!! but i agree with irnchris in the sense that he makes a good point. handset makers will go for what makes the most profit, not what takes the least royalty (which microsoft charges). Android is more popular, more people are looking for it, more money is in making a phone with it, it will continue to get made despite the small royalty.



    Do you really think the majority of Android phones are sold because of the OS? Really!? Not a chance. People are buying what is cheap and what is pushed at them in the store.



    You watch how quickly people will adopt WP7 if the manufacturers are able to shave a couple of bucks off the cost and push them out to vendors as the flavour of the day.
  • Reply 7 of 45
    quevarquevar Posts: 101member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Blastdoor View Post


    Apple needs to be careful here. Apple's goal should be to slow Android down, but not to kill it. If MS ever were to pull its head out of its a$$, it could be a much stronger competitor than Google.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by island hermit View Post


    You watch how quickly people will adopt WP7 if the manufacturers are able to shave a couple of bucks off the cost and push them out to vendors as the flavour of the day.



    I totally agree! Why would anyone want Android to be killed? The manufactures will start pushing Windows Phones, which I would far rather NOT have as a major player in the market. MS has been known to have bad business practices that hurt the entire industry by stifling competition in the OS space and I do not want them to regain any kind of control over the cell phone market. Do I like Android? No, but I am thrilled that there is some competition and that MS is nowhere in sight. If Android does start losing steam, many of the manufacturers will move to MS. It may not be because of this one reason, but there is a growing list of problems for Android that will start to make some of them move. Right now, the only real alternative is Windows Phone and MS will have a lot of phones with their OS being pushed out in the next year by Nokia. Like it or not, but it is likely that Windows Phone OS will be in the number two spot in three years.
  • Reply 8 of 45
    as Microsoft strikes deals with HTC and other vendors around the Android licensing and WP7 licensing. If Redmond is smart they will use the Apple challenges to step in behind and say "hey guys listen, if you reduce or drop Android production, we'll give you an even better deal on WP7". Apple still needs to defend against IP predation, and will continue to do so as needed. This however means that Microsoft has an opportunity to recover much of what they lost to Android - whether that is in line with what Apple wants to see happen is uncertain. Apple is not out to force people out of business (except Psystar for being stupid), but they will also fare better in a hotly contested market where Microsoft and Android are fighting over the bottom 2/3's of the market.
  • Reply 9 of 45
    cloudgazercloudgazer Posts: 2,161member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Blastdoor View Post


    Apple needs to be careful here. Apple's goal should be to slow Android down, but not to kill it. If MS ever were to pull its head out of its a$$, it could be a much stronger competitor than Google.



    I don't think that's Apple's gameplan here, but then I have a kinda crazy theory about this.



    <crazy theory>

    Apple wants to have the upper end of the smartphone market and key to that is maintaining a design differentiation between iPhone and competitors such as Android. The problem is that it lacks a legal tool that will let it do that, even design patents and trade dress take too long, by the time it's won the current Samsung case it will be time for the new model anyway.



    Suppose instead Apple forces competitors to license key patents, but grants them only a partial license that requires each model covered to be approved. Apple would then be in the position of being able to dictate to HTC or Samsung what their models of Android phone could and couldn't look like, and if the OEM disagreed Apple already has the ITC result in its pocket to get a fast exclusion order on importation.



    As far as I know this has not been done by a major tech patent holder, but from my limited research there's no reason why it couldn't be done. There's no statutary restriction on what a patent license agreement can or can't entail beyond those that would apply to any contract.

    </crazy theory>
  • Reply 10 of 45
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Blastdoor View Post


    Apple needs to be careful here. Apple's goal should be to slow Android down, but not to kill it. If MS ever were to pull its head out of its a$$, it could be a much stronger competitor than Google.



    Apple wants MS to win out. Can't you figure it out? Apple and MS have agreed to divide the world between themselves and drive google and everyone else out. Unfortunately for Apple they don't remember the past and MS will gain and pass them again. slowly, but it will happen.

    Thanks for killing competition you guys and gals!
  • Reply 11 of 45
    island hermitisland hermit Posts: 6,217member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by screamingfist View Post


    Apple wants MS to win out. Can't you figure it out? Apple and MS have agreed to divide the world between themselves and drive google and everyone else out. Unfortunately for Apple they don't remember the past and MS will gain and pass them again. slowly, but it will happen.

    Thanks for killing competition you guys and gals!



    Thanks for killing competition?! From your post it sounds like the game has just begun.
  • Reply 12 of 45
    asciiascii Posts: 5,941member
    Google's platform is the web, how much do they really care about Android?
  • Reply 13 of 45
    I think this is brilliant. Apple already has the lion's share of profits in the mobile space. Now add licensing fees to that for the majority of Android handsets and you'll have more record revenues, record profits at Apple. They have successfully pulled off the impossible - grab the majority of profits without having the highest market share. That situation will get even better.
  • Reply 13 of 45
    firefly7475firefly7475 Posts: 1,502member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Blastdoor View Post


    Apple needs to be careful here. Apple's goal should be to slow Android down, but not to kill it. If MS ever were to pull its head out of its a$$, it could be a much stronger competitor than Google.



    Well... yes and no. Microsoft and Apple are long time frenemies. For all of their history their relationship has always been somewhat amicable.



    I think it might have something to do with having comparable business models. It has always been something of a "fair fight" between them and I think they both understand this.



    Google on the other hand is rather disruptive. They clone their competitors products and give them away for free.



    That isn't something I would like to compete against.
  • Reply 15 of 45
    cloudgazercloudgazer Posts: 2,161member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by island hermit View Post


    Do you really think the majority of Android phones are sold because of the OS? Really!? Not a chance. People are buying what is cheap and what is pushed at them in the store.



    Yes, but why is Android being pushed? Mostly I would argue it's being pushed because it's what the salesmen themselves are using and are comfortable with. The same kind of 'comfort factor' based inertia that served MS so well back in the desktop is now killing them in smartphones.



    It's not helped by the fact that microsoft completely screwed up the branding of WP7, and seems to be screwing up the marketing and advertising too. At this point Android phones could be 15$-30$ more than comparable WP7 phones and WP7 would still get no traction in the channel.
  • Reply 16 of 45
    antinousantinous Posts: 25member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by island hermit View Post


    Do you really think the majority of Android phones are sold because of the OS? Really!? Not a chance. People are buying what is cheap and what is pushed at them in the store.



    You watch how quickly people will adopt WP7 if the manufacturers are able to shave a couple of bucks off the cost and push them out to vendors as the flavour of the day.



    From what I've read in the comments sections of related stories on Engadget and PCWorld, people are buying Android devices because they hate Apple. I mean EVERYTHING about Apple. I like Apple but I can kind of understand the other side's point-of-view. I can't stand being inside an Apple store. It just feels creepy to me.
  • Reply 17 of 45
    jragostajragosta Posts: 10,473member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by irnchriz View Post


    This article is a bag of tosh. IF Apple succeed in their patent case against HTC they will be able to charge a royalty from companies who use Android. Normally royalty payments range from a few cents to a few dollars. It is incredibly unlikely that Apple would try to extort tens of dollars per device as this would get them in shit with the government for unfair business practices for trying to kill off android.



    Absolutely, totally wrong.



    There's no rule that royalty payments are a few cents or dollars. I've been involved with products where royalty payments were THOUSANDS of dollars.



    Royalties for products like this typically range from a few tenths of a percent to as much as 7-8%. On a $600 handset, that means that $20-30 would not be remotely out of line.



    Apple is free to ask for whatever royalty they want. They will certainly not be charged with unfair business practices by the government (only by Apple-haters in forums like this one).
  • Reply 18 of 45
    island hermitisland hermit Posts: 6,217member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by cloudgazer View Post


    Yes, but why is Android being pushed? Mostly I would argue it's being pushed because it's what the salesmen themselves are using and are comfortable with. The same kind of 'comfort factor' based inertia that served MS so well back in the desktop is now killing them in smartphones.



    It's not helped by the fact that microsoft completely screwed up the branding of WP7, and seems to be screwing up the marketing and advertising too. At this point Android phones could be 15$-30$ more than comparable WP7 phones and WP7 would still get no traction in the channel.



    Sales people sell whatever gives them the biggest incentives. Right now they have a huge incentive to sell Android because it puts the most $$$ in their pocket.
  • Reply 19 of 45
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Antinous View Post


    From what I've read in the comments sections of related stories on Engadget and PCWorld, people are buying Android devices because they hate Apple. I mean EVERYTHING about Apple. I like Apple but I can kind of understand the other side's point-of-view. I can't stand being inside an Apple store. It just feels creepy to me.



    Apple designs some of the best tech products in the world. But i refuse to buy them anymore. Is Android superior? hell no! never will be! but it gets by and is better than going with MS...

    I think many people are like me and were one time apple fans until Jobs and Apple went total EMPIRE on everything.
  • Reply 20 of 45
    island hermitisland hermit Posts: 6,217member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Antinous View Post


    From what I've read in the comments sections of related stories on Engadget and PCWorld, people are buying Android devices because they hate Apple. I mean EVERYTHING about Apple. I like Apple but I can kind of understand the other side's point-of-view. I can't stand being inside an Apple store. It just feels creepy to me.



    Very very small group of people. Apple is still one of the world's favourite brands.



    Creepy??! Maybe you should look inside yourself and ask why it feels creepy. This may have more to do with you than the store considering that millions of people enjoy Apple stores.
Sign In or Register to comment.