Apple And Google Finally End Patent Nuclear War: Settle All (Direct) Disputes

from the about-freaking-time dept

Apple and Google have been fighting a long patent battle, often by proxy, over smartphones. It’s long been known that Steve Jobs — a guy who once said: “Picasso had a saying: ‘Good artists copy, great artists steal.’ We have always been shameless about stealing great ideas” — was absolutely furious that Android smart phones looked so much like the iPhone. That resulted in a series of patent battles that have wasted hundreds of millions of dollars in legal fees for lots of different companies. That money could have gone towards greater innovation and competing in the marketplace, but instead it went to lawyers.

In a surprise late Friday announcement, the two companies now claim they’ve settled all patent lawsuits directly between the two and will work together on patent reform (hmm…). They also note that “the agreement does not include a cross license.” That last point is important, because it actually means that Apple’s other lawsuits against Android device makers, such as Samsung, will continue.

This isn’t a complete end to the smartphone patent wars, but it’s at least a first step — and hopefully a recognition on Apple’s part that just suing everyone for patent infringement isn’t, perhaps, the smartest strategy.

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Companies: apple, google, motorola, samsung

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Comments on “Apple And Google Finally End Patent Nuclear War: Settle All (Direct) Disputes”

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wizz33 (profile) says:

youtube ext blocking

it seems that youtube doesn’t like any extension that could touch it.
in kUbuntu 14.4 in chromium doesn’t like any extension exept ghostery and session manager.
in the last to months i had to disable every extension exept the to mentioned above.
a smal list of the extensions i had to disable.

adbock for youtube
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youtube center
youtube unblocker

being autistic is this as far to go as i can think right now
i live in the Netherlands (.nl)

David says:

Just shows that patents don't work

Google/Motorola have good technology patents, Apple has good lawyers patenting rubbish. The former, thanks to what happened to patent laws and award processes, do no constitute an advantage over the latter.

Now Google/Motorola don’t exactly have bad lawyers either. But the difference in lawyer quality makes much more money than the difference in patent quality.

Since the idea of patents was to provide an incentive for advancing science and technology and the current system rather advances lawyering, it would just be easier to cut out the middlemen and pay horrendous sums to the lawyers directly.

In that manner, technology firms do not get caught in the crosswinds that are basically a lottery where money is distributed randomly and lawyers take a premium off the redistribution.

Whatever says:


” That money could have gone towards greater innovation and competing in the marketplace, but instead it went to lawyers. “

I always laugh at this assumption. You are suggesting that there is some magic amount of innovation that hasn’t occurred as a result. There is no support for this, rather it’s likely that the money spent on lawyers would instead be sitting in their cash reserves or perhaps being used to build another overwrought artsy-fartsy workspace. Neither Apple or Samsung are particularly short of cash to operate and do all the things that they want. There is no indication that the marketplace suffers because lawyers get paid.

That One Guy (profile) says:

Re: assumption

So I’m curious, are you under the assumption that research and development is free or something? That new technology and new adaptations of current technology just spring out of the air, no costs or effort required?

All those millions upon millions of dollars in court and lawyer fees? All that is money that could have been used in R&D, but instead was flushed right down the drain and wasted in pointless legal battles.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: assumption

I guess your laboring under the mistaken impression that money ‘sitting in cash reserves’ is just under a mattress or something. It’s not. It’s being invested. Invested in something liquid mind you, like a money market fund, but invested all the same. Investments are a very productive market activity, certainly more productive than paying lawyers. (Ok that last part was just much subjective opinion but the rest of it’s objective fact). So you can’t just compare ‘paying lawyers’ to doing nothing because they’re never ever doing nothing with their money.

ArkieGuy (profile) says:

Google or Motorola?

I’ve seen some reports that say that Google and Apple settled and others that say that Motorola and Apple settled.

If it is Motorola / Apple that settled, it really doesn’t mean much as Google kept the “good” mobile patents. Besides, Apple might be hoping not to start a patent war with Lenovo (which has thousands of patents NOT related to the mobile world). Who know how many patents that IBM sold to Lenovo that Apple is worrying that it might be CONSTRUED as infringing.

bobby b says:

” . . . a series of patent battles that have wasted hundreds of millions of dollars in legal fees . . . “

Legal fees are never “wasted money.”

Money paid to lawyers is used by those lawyers to purchase goods and services from others. A dollar paid to a lawyer might then be paid to a yacht manufacturer (and thus support its workers), or to a luxury auto manufacturer (again, supporting its workers), or to a caviar packager, or to cocaine dealers, or to high-end restaurants, or to procurers of underaged sex workers, or to sellers of Viagra . . .

The list is endless. Legal fees represent money that enters the economy and that will be re-spent by each successive payee, providing a huge stimulus to our worldwide economy.

So, if you would like to do your part to help end hunger and poverty and deprivation, simply hire a lawyer, incur fees, and pay them!

“Lawyers! Better Than Shovel-Ready!”

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