And With Those 200 iPhone Patents Come The Inevitable Patent Disputes
from the nuclear-standoff dept
However, a second reason is becoming clear -- and it's (unfortunately) one of the most popular reasons for getting (and hyping) patents these days: nuclear stockpiling. That is, you want to have all these patents to hopefully ward off others with patents who will want to take a bite out of your success should your technology go anywhere. Already, we've seen claims from LG that Apple was copying an LG phone with its iPhone design. The latest, pointed out by Engadget is that Quantum Research, who has already sued Apple over the click wheel on the iPod is gearing up to sue over the touch screen interface, which it claims to hold patents on. "The description of the iPhone suggests it uses a rear-surface touch screen, and has proximity sensing which can tell if it is held to the ear. That's a QR capability." So now Apple can saber rattle back with its collection of 200 patents against anyone who claims infringement on it -- and then hope that the threat of all out nuclear patent war leads the two sides to come to an "agreement." It's not efficient. It's not good for innovation or progress... but it's how the system works, and it's why so many patent attorneys don't want it to change.