This week on AI: Apple's Supreme Court loss, AirPods delay exposed, in-theaters iTunes rentals & mo

Posted:
in General Discussion edited December 2016
The big news of the week, of course, was Apple's defeat at the U.S. Supreme Court, but some other highlights included the reason AirPods have yet to ship, and rumors that people may soon be able to rent movies on iTunes while they're still in theaters.




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Everything you need to know:

  • The Supreme Court sided with Samsung in its challenge over damage payments > >
  • Apple wants to put theatrical movies up for rent on iTunes -- at extra cost > >
  • Apple can't figure out how to sync audio between AirPods > >
  • Single sign-on is now available for iOS devices and the Apple TV > >
  • Apple will have to pay $450,000 for mishandling e-waste > >
  • A wind power deal will bring clean power to Chinese suppliers > >
  • Apple manufacturing partner Foxconn could expand in the U.S. > >
For in-depth discussion of this week's hottest stories, listen to the AppleInsider podcast. Subscribe here, or stream the embed below:

A roundup of all of our hottest stories this week:

Supreme Court sides with Samsung over Apple, says payments shouldn't cover whole device profits

Apple pushes for iTunes rentals of movies still on big screen

Apple having trouble syncing audio between wireless AirPods - report

Apple single sign-on feature goes live with support from 9 pay TV providers

Apple agrees to pay $450K to settle charges of mishandling e-waste in California

Apple signs deal with wind turbine maker Goldwind to bring clean power to suppliers

UK police turn to stealing in-use iPhones from suspects on the street, bypassing encryption

Burglars ram SUV into Palo Alto Apple store in smash-and-grab raid

Tim Cook refutes negative IDC Apple Watch report, says early holiday sales set new record

Impending iOS update to help diagnose additional iPhone battery shutdowns

Apple AI researchers gagged no more, now allowed to publish and confer with colleagues

Shanghai consumer agency reports spontaneous iPhone 6 fires, Apple refutes claim

Apple Music surpasses 20M subscribers after 17 months of service

Apple assembly partner Foxconn plans US expansion

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 10
    One of the legacies that Jobs left was the 'thermonuclear war' with Android and lost. It's time for Apple to bury the litigation hatchet (start by replacing Bruce Sewell) and double down on innovation with both their current product lines and new faltering ones like the AirPods.
    edited December 2016
  • Reply 2 of 10
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 5,181member
    markbyrn said:
    One of the legacies that Jobs left was the 'thermonuclear war' with Android and lost. It's time for Apple to bury the litigation hatchet (start by replacing Bruce Sewell) and double down on innovation with both their current product lines and new faltering ones like the AirPods.

    How do you know Apple wouldn't have lost with Steve still here? To me its just a waste of time and money for Apple to continue fighting something that really won't benefit them in the end. Its a distraction to them, which they don't need. 
  • Reply 3 of 10
    rob53rob53 Posts: 2,671member
    If you read the actual SCOTUS decision, it doesn't say Samsung won and Apple lost, it simply says the court has to instruct the jury a little differently and let the jury decide (again) using the following:

    "This case requires us to address a threshold matter: the scope of the term “article of manufacture.” The only question we resolve today is whether, in the case of a multicomponent product, the relevant “article of manufacture” must always be the end product sold to the consumer or whether it can also be a component of that product. Under the former interpretation, a patent holder will always be entitled to the infringer’s total profit from the end product. Under the latter interpretation, a patent holder will sometimes be entitled to the infringer’s total profit from a component of the end product."

    All Samsung won is another chance in court to try and persuade a jury that the "article of manufacture" in question is the end product or entire iPhone and not just a component or iPhone screen. Once the jury decides, they can then either justifiably award Apple with Samsung's entire profits for all offending phones or just the profits/costs of the iPhone screen. The problem with this is Samsung has flooded the market with copies of the iPhone to the point where jurists can't really tell the difference and think all phones look the same anyway so why should Apple benefit from this decision. 

    Samsung isn't challenging the FACT they lost in court, no matter what any other court, including the SCOTUS, says about design patents being valid (Apple's design patents were upheld in this decision by the way), they are only challenging how much money they have to pay. The bigger issue is Samsung has gotten away with stealing then using Apple's design patents to get a major foothold in the market, well, not a foothold but the majority of mobile devices sold/given-away worldwide. If the courts had stopped Samsung in the beginning things would have been different. Samsung might still sell the majority of mobile devices but they would have had to design them differently and they might or might not have sold as well. We'll never know because Samsung got away with it and the US government and courts allowed them to. 

    This will be the legacy of Steve Jobs and Apple as well as the corrupt US Government, patent and court system. If you're not willing to buy off government officials, something that's always been done by corporations, it will be difficult to really succeed. Apple has generated a tremendous amount of success without the amount of corruption most major corporations, including Samsung, Microsoft, Amazon, and Google, have obviously been involved in. 
    apple jockeybaconstangStrangeDaysDave Spence
  • Reply 4 of 10
    I don't think anybody said that Apple still wouldn't have lost if Steve were still here, but I do think it's important for Apple to fight for strong patent protections for its innovations and strong penalties for illegal patent infringement, not just for damage already done but because it sets a precedent for future cases. Does anybody here really think Samsung will ever stop copying Apple?

    It seems like the Supreme Court essentially said that it's OK to profit from a product that incorporates someone else's patented technology, as long as it also incorporates other technology, which is like forcing Apple to license its technology to Samsung. If I were in the pharmaceutical industry, I would be watching this precedent very closely, because you could make combination therapies that use other companies' patented drugs, as long as they also use some of your own compounds. Sure, you might have to pay a cut to the company you robbed, but that's just the price of doing business, and it's much cheaper than developing the drug yourself.
    edited December 2016 apple jockeybaconstangrcponeDave Spence
  • Reply 5 of 10
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,243member
    It seems like the Supreme Court essentially said that it's OK to profit from a product that incorporates someone else's patented technology, as long as it also incorporates other technology, which is like forcing Apple to license its technology to Samsung. 
    Not at all what the ruling said. Not even a tiny part of it, nor would it effect anything at all regarding pharmaceutical patents on drugs/compounds. Zilch.  This was specific to design patents and the proper damage basis. That's it, and not anything to do with whether it's OK to infringe intellectual property rights or if Samsung was guilty. SCOTUS noted they were.
    edited December 2016 apple jockey
  • Reply 6 of 10
    gatorguy said:
    It seems like the Supreme Court essentially said that it's OK to profit from a product that incorporates someone else's patented technology, as long as it also incorporates other technology, which is like forcing Apple to license its technology to Samsung. 
    Not at all what the ruling said. Not even a tiny part of it, nor would it effect anything at all regarding pharmaceutical patents on drugs/compounds. Zilch.  This was specific to design patents and the proper damage basis. That's it, and not anything to do with whether it's OK to infringe intellectual property rights or if Samsung was guilty. SCOTUS noted they were.
    Yes, I should have worded that differently. What I was trying to get at is that if you only punish a company for a portion of the profits from an infringing product, it will still be worthwhile to infringe in many cases. Here's a different example--if I make a car that looks almost identical to a BMW, with the characteristic BMW grille, and I sell a gazillion of them before anyone can stop me, what portion of my profits should be given to BMW? There are lots of other technologies in a car, but the appearance can be an important factor in consumers' decision-making process, since so many of the other technologies are hard to quantify at a glance (like the insides of a smartphone). If I'm still allowed to make a tidy profit with this strategy, tomorrow I'll copy some others too. I shouldn't have said "OK" in my previous post because I understand that they will still face a penalty and didn't mean to imply otherwise, but if you can copy enough to significantly reduce the difference between your product and the innovator's product, and that makes you one of the few competitors to profit, you're still better off than if you were honest and didn't copy at all. So unless the penalty is highly punitive, you're not really being punished, it's more like paying a licensing fee, even if technically that's not what it is, of course. Yes, it's a design patent in this case, but if a similar notion were applied to other types of patents, like pharmaceutical patents, you could combine your drug with another drug, so people who have to take multiple pills would only have to take one, so your pill would be better, you would save billions on R&D, and even if you were legally forced to give 75% of your profit to the patent holder, you'd still make a killing. I"m not saying that this would be "legal," just that I think strong precedents should be set to dissuade this type of behavior in general.
    rcpone
  • Reply 7 of 10
    Actually, in the pharmaceutical world, it is not unknown for one company to license another companies patented formula into the first companies new compound(pill). Proper compensation and limitations are in place.
  • Reply 8 of 10
    markbyrn said:
    One of the legacies that Jobs left was the 'thermonuclear war' with Android and lost. It's time for Apple to bury the litigation hatchet (start by replacing Bruce Sewell) and double down on innovation with both their current product lines and new faltering ones like the AirPods.
    Why, so other companies can just steal those innovations? There is now a Supreme Court precedent that you can copy IP and get away with it. Sure, it makes sense that such copying may not be "all" of the components of a device, but what constitutes "all"? When a consumer goes into a store and sees a device that looks nearly identical to an iPhone and chooses to buy it for its price, then it may have well been all of the device. Hopefully the lower courts will recognize that look/feel makes up nearly all of the device in the consumer's mind and will award apple nearly all of the money it was going to get in the first place. If they don't, then I guess it is open season on all innovative companies' IP. Apple should see the litigation through to the very end.
    edited December 2016
  • Reply 9 of 10
    Sounds like SCOTUS is ingoring whether a party should be allowed to decide if they want to sell/license their invention in the first place.  

    Imagine you you bake a pie for a special dinner and place it on the window sill to cool. (really, imagine this; it used to happen in America, I swear) Someone walks by, takes your pie.  SCOTUS: that's fine, as long as they pay you for the ingredients (eventually).

    Using this decision as a precedent in looking at the DMCA, distributing copyrighted movies should only impact the studios' distribution costs (pennies per title) so those extortion cases should come to an end, right?  
  • Reply 10 of 10
    This airpod reviewer is a goon. I've worn jaybirds for over 4 years, they've never fallen out of my ears while running, let alone "just standing around". C'mon man, cut the BS.
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