In Round Two, Apple Succeeds In Getting Samsung Tablet Banned In The US

from the who-wants-one-now dept

Apple has continued its legal effort to make it clear to the world that the best tablet you can buy... is a Samsung Galaxy Tab. Honestly, I'm still at a loss to understand Apple's strategy in suing Samsung because its Galaxy Tab looks too much like Apple's iPad, and (Apple claims) infringes on its design patent. Apple had succeeded in getting sales of the device blocked in Europe and Australia, but had a bit more trouble in the US. The district court had rejected the injunction saying that letting sales continue wouldn't be harmful to Apple. However, CAFC, the appeals court that loves patents and never sees anything wrong with them, sent it back telling the district court to try again -- so this time around an injunction has been issued.

As I've said before, all this is really doing is signalling, repeatedly, to the market which tablet Apple thinks is the closest in terms of a competitor to the iPad. The whole thing is really silly of course. Apple could (and should) focus on just competing with the Galaxy Tab in the market. Make a better product and sell it. Forcing a competitor out of the market because it looks similar really highlights how insecure Apple is concerning its own products, and how easy it thinks others can compete with it.


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  1.  
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    Mesonoxian Eve (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 8:47am

    The Ohio Art Company, makers of Etch-A-Sketch, should sue Apple for patent design infringement. This rectangular toy featuring a screen was around long before Wozniak found a garage.

    Such idiocy.

    In a side-note: Venture Beat's running an article how this decade will produce the best innovators.

    Maybe, but it's too bad the next decade will have all those innovations mired in legal idiocy.

     

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  2.  
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    Jeremy, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 8:47am

    How can any sane person believe that the worldwide economy is not being held back (at least in part) by the patent system? If there's a failure in capitalism to provide jobs at this point, it likely has little to do with the banks and everything to do with the fact that ideas are being killed at their roots by over-capitalized companies hell-bent on domination.

     

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  3.  
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    el_segfaulto (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 8:48am

    Thank Goodness!

    I'm so glad this happened! For you see, thinking is hard. And by Apple using the legal system like a blunt instrument I'll have far fewer choices in the future.

     

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  4.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 8:53am

    Apple doesn't know how to compete like a real business. They fear it and loathe it. Cheaters all the way.

     

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  5.  
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    MrWilson, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 8:54am

    "Oh noes! They stole our round corners! But they took millions in research to design!"

    Not that this really matters since existing stock of the device can still sell and it's the older model anyway. They did Samsung a favor by getting customers to buy the newer Samsung Tab instead.

    It's not like a customer is going to suddenly buy an iPad just because the Tab they were looking at went away.

     

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  6.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 8:58am

    Just another reason for me to dislike Apple.

     

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  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:01am

    Apple products are well recognized for their industrial designs. This does not mean that their products are superior, but only that such designs serve as a product discriminator from others in the tablet market, much like what is done via trademarks. To suggest that Apple is stifling innovation is simply untrue.

     

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  8.  
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    PlagueSD (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:06am

    So, why aren't all the TV manufacturers suing each other? Every TV I see is a rectangle with a screen (even the same dimensions sometimes!!!)

    Samsung puts out a 55" TV. Next thing you know Sony has a 55" TV out!!! How can this be??? We need to stop the nonsense!!!!


    /sarcasm

     

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  9.  
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    Anonymous Coward of Esteemed Trolling (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:08am

    innovation of extortion of innovation ( i know...wtf )

    Microsoft should jump in and shake that apple tree.
    Get the ipad B& For Lulz (they could probably do it)

     

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  10.  
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    Richard (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:09am

    Re:

    To suggest that Apple is stifling innovation is simply untrue..

    They are trying to stifle competition.

    Frankly I don't think the design of the box really ought to be a discriminator with this kind of technology.

     

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  11.  
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    Manok, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:11am

    Well, at least Apple managed to delay sales in Australia for many months... out of a 2 year life cycle or so. Also Samsung missed the xmas sales because of that.

     

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  12.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:11am

    Re:

    Just wait, Apple hasn't entered the TV business yet, but there's lots of rumors going around that they are planning to. Its only a matter of time until they are suing tv manufactures.

     

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  13.  
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    Optimist, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:15am

    One day, a footnote in Planet Ridiculous Major's Ancient History Texts will read:

    "Earth's technological age started to fade rapidly the day they invented patent law. That's why the planet is now completely devoid of life.

    On the up side, Apple was granted a patent on planets completely devoid of life. Thanks to that, nowadays all the dead Apple stockgolders are stinking rich dead people."

     

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  14.  
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    Optitypo, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:17am

    Re: One day, a footnote in Planet Ridiculous Major's Ancient History Texts will read:

    er, stockholders

     

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    AJBarnes, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:17am

    Re:

    Too many frickin' lawyers sniffing around like hungry dogs for a morsel, if you ask me. We are no longer a country that innovates. Unions have helped send our manufacturing overseas. So, our unemployed either go to law school to get rich quick, or sit on the couch watching Jerry with their hands out. Go figure.

     

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  16.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:20am

    'Apple could (and should) focus on just competing with the Galaxy Tab in the market.' they wont do that because it may mean doing some extra work to remain competitive, give more value for money and keep customers coming back for the latest thing. much easier to block any sort of competition. didn't like it when their product was blocked in china, though, did they? usual double standards from Apple.
    also, they have taken a leaf out of the entertainment industries handbook. they dont compete with file sharing. instead of doing so or maybe even partnering sites, they prefer to block content and shut sites. either way, they dont have to do anything to improve their product or service. the courts and the governments do that bit. only ones that suffer and lose out are the very ones that should be encouraged to contribute via payment. instead, they are encouraged to buy nothing for fear of infringement accusations, fines and jail! good business model!!!

     

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  17.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:23am

    So if we get enough appealing of Apple, do we end up with enough to make a batch of applesauce? Or some pies... Mmmmm, Pie.

     

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  18.  
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    gorehound (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:23am

    Re: Thank Goodness!

    I will never buy or support any of Apple's Products.Way to go Apple as you are acting like that big schoolroom bully who used to pick on you back in Junior High !

    Furthermore the Patent System is broken and so obviously so..........It is destroying USA Innovation & it is affecting Employment in the USA as well.

    Apple has become Big Brother !!!

     

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  19.  
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    Ninja (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:25am

    I sincerely fail to see how a rectangular shaped screen with round corners can be patented at all. They should sue Asus too, their Transformer tablet is just like Galaxy Tab at first glance. And the Toshiba tablet. And the HP tablet. And the iPad. So they should sue every1.

    In fact, they should sue monitor makers such as LG, Sony. Because monitors look like and iPad. Tablet PCs... erm ok.

    This gives us a clear view of how bad was the loss of Steve Jobs to the brand. I don't expect Apple to fade but they will lose their 'vanguard' position.

     

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  20.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:26am

    This doesn't matter

    This model isn't even being made anymore... Samsung has already moved on to the next gen version. This decision came too late to matter

     

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  21.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:28am

    Re:

    just competition and free markets.

     

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  22.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:29am

    Re:

    Which means that the failure you point out is not in capitalism but in government. This is because governments are the ones who issue these patents and enforce them.

     

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  23.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:33am

    Re:

    This started before Steve Jobs died and does not go against comments he made in which it was apparent he wanted to do anything within his power to stop Android even to the point of mutual destruction.

     

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  24.  
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    Lord Binky, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:37am

    Re: This doesn't matter

    That is all Samsung needed their lawyers to do.

     

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  25.  
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    383bigblock (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:37am

    One bad Apple spoils the whole bunch

    Wow....The only reason I have an iPad is because it was a gift. Now I need to quickly get it on ebay and sell it before Apple successfully gets the "first sale" doctrine changed as well forcing everyone to eat their proverbial "Apple" products. It's obvious Samsung got it right......and Apple knows it. At some point they need to learn how to make a better product and add more value than just changing the color of the case.

     

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  26.  
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    Anonymous Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:38am

    Re:

    "Abstract:
    In the past, “non-practicing entities” (NPEs), popularly known as “patent trolls,” have helped small inventors profit from their inventions. Is this true today or, given the unprecedented levels of NPE litigation, do NPEs reduce innovation incentives? Using a survey of defendants and a database of litigation, this paper estimates the direct costs to defendants arising from NPE patent assertions. We estimate that firms accrued $29 billion of direct costs in 2011. Moreover, although large firms accrued over half of direct costs, most of the defendants were small or medium-sized firms, indicating that NPEs are not just a problem for large firms."

    http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2091210

    It appears that some sane people have actually come up with some numbers showing how much the economy is being held back.

     

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  27.  
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    Richard (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:45am

    Re: Re:

    Unions have helped send our manufacturing overseas.

    Nah - I think it is capitalists who have lost their sense of social responsibility that have done that.

    In the 19th century successful businessmen learnt that wealth bought of the backs of the poor didn't help them in the long run. Their 20th/21st century successors have forgotten that lesson and have gone in search of a new set of poor people to exploit.

    Given the level of living costs in western countries it is impossible for wages to fall to a level that would allow manufacturing in the US or Europe to compete with 3rd world wages. Those high living costs are the result of the rich people who live in the west. Blaming the Unions just betrays a politcal bias and a lack of thought.

     

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  28.  
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    Lord Binky, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:45am

    Re: This doesn't matter

    That is all Samsung needed their lawyers to do.

     

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  29.  
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    Mason Wheeler, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:45am

    Re:

    And to think that that used to be Microsoft's line, and Apple was the alternative.

     

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  30.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:50am

    I don't think this suit is about Apple acknowledging that the Tab is a close competitor or being afraid to compete. Like all patent lawsuits, it's purely about exploiting the system.
    Apple filed its design patents like a good little company ought to. Now that there's another tablet that resembles theirs closely enough, all they have to do is cry foul and have the offender removed. And they would have done it to anyone, not just Samsung; they're removing similar-enough products because they can, not because they feel threatened.

     

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  31.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:50am

    Re: One bad Apple spoils the whole bunch

    First Sale Doctrine is already destroyed via Software Licensing.

     

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  32.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:52am

    Yet another reason why I hate Apple.

    If/When Samsung comes out on top can Samsung get a injunction against all Apple products in the US and every other country Apple got injunctions against them in? After all, an eye for an eye.

     

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  33.  
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    DannyB (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 10:04am

    Re: Re:

    Maybe it is a failure of both capitalism and government.

    Failure of government that it is corrupt and can be bought by lobbyists.

    Failure of capitalism that if you can't compete in the market, you corrupt the government to hinder your competitors in the market.

    Gee, wait a second . . . we're talking about patents right? For a second there it sounded like we were talking about the RIAA and iTunes / Amazon / etc services, or the MPAA and Netflix / Hulu+ / Amazon Prime, etc services.

     

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  34.  
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    DannyB (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 10:06am

    Those who live in glass houses . . .

    . . . shouldn't use nuclear weapons.

    I can't wait to hear the whining and crying and complaining that we will be subjected to once a nuclear weapon lands in Apple's back yard.

    At some point, the entire Android industry is going to dog pile on Apple.

     

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  35.  
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    G Thompson (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 10:22am

    Re:

    The worlds economy most definately isn't being held back by paten systems, only the American economy and maybe some parts of Europe. The rest of the world which understands how stupid certain patents are and also makes some moot by allowing things like generic medicine etc is going quite fine thank you very much.

    On that note If anyone in the USA would like a Samsung tablet I am more than willing to purchase one on your behalf and ship it too you at cost (that cost does include the exchange rate + delivery)

    Apple might of gotten a ban on the Samsung tablet in Australia, though I say gotten as in past tense, since that ban is no longer an issue. Though Apple it seems have been on the receiving end of lots of government fines $2.5mill or so) due to breaching consumer laws in last few months. Bad Apple!

     

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  36.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 10:30am

    Be

    All Samsung has to do to stop this nonsense is to make a round tablet!...problem solved!

     

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  37.  
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    G Thompson (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 10:30am

    Re: Those who live in glass houses . . .

    I can see it happening very soon actually. Samsung can at any time say..

    "hmmmm Apple aren't selling that many ipads or iphones any more (since Samsung and HTC have the worlds market now...other than North America) so why are we letting our Electronic division help our Competitor.. Oh stuff it lets NOT sell them the screens anymore they don't pay enough for them anyway and we need more for all the products we ARE selling"

     

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  38.  
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    That Anonymous Coward (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 10:31am

    Re: Re: Thank Goodness!

    Our innovation is fine...
    Grocery Stores are the largest employers of IP intensive countries...

     

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  39.  
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    Jeremy, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 10:31am

    Re: Re:

    Considering globalization, I'm not sure how you can make the claim that a lack of job creation in the U.S. or Europe is not affecting the rest of the world.

     

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  40.  
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    That Anonymous Coward (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 10:33am

    Re:

    Yeah the designs are so similar that Apple laywers photoshopped images to make them look more similar in at least 1 of the cases in Europe....

     

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  41.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 10:33am

    Re: Re:

    Is it stifling competition that Apple has a trademark for its iPad, iPhone, iTouch, etc.? Of course not. After all, Samsung does the very same thing for its products.

    A unique industrial design serves much the same function.

     

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  42.  
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    Jeffrey Nonken (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 10:34am

    Every time I see Apple doing this, I want to buy a Galaxy Tab. Not because I need or want a tablet; not because I know anything about it; not because I even know if it's worth the money. Or worth ANY money. Just to send Apple a message to F**K THE H*LL OFF.

    Actually, I think my daughter would like one. And my wife. Well, heck, maybe my other daughter too.

    *sigh* Unfortunately it won't fit my budget.

    Damn.

     

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  43.  
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    Nathan Gibson (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 10:38am

    Re: Re: Re:

    A box with round corners is not unique design.

     

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  44.  
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    That Anonymous Coward (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 10:38am

    Re: Re: Re: Thank Goodness!

    have you ever looked at one of your own posts and wondered if you had a stroke halfway through?

    Grocery Stores are the largest IP Intensive employers in our country.

     

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  45.  
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    Jeremy, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 10:40am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Right, so when television companies first came out, I'm sure RCA sued everyone because their cathode ray tube was of a trademarked shape. Because it was iconic to their business it was therefore legally actionable. Moreover, their lawsuits probably increased competition and innovation in televisions, right?

    You're posting nonsense.

     

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  46.  
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    Mr. Applegate, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 10:42am

    Well that's too bad...

    I already own a Samsung Galaxy 10.1, and a eeepad transformer.

    Guess the eeepad is the way forward. I will never purchase an Apple product again. I hated my iPhone 3Gs and wished I had bought Android, it was replaced with a Samsung phone.

     

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  47.  
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    Jeremy, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 10:44am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Well, as I was corrected on below, I believe Apple is actually suing on trademark violations? So it's back to Mickey Mouse actually.

     

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  48.  
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    Larry, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 11:13am

    Re: Re: Re:

    "Blaming the Unions just betrays a politcal bias and a lack of thought."

    As does blaming the robber barons.

     

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  49.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 11:27am

    The Samsung Galaxy Tab black market is now open.

     

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  50.  
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    PRMan, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 11:28am

    Sooo glad I bought the Samsung Galaxy SII...

    Apple's back on my 10-year-ban list, after just getting off it this year.

     

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  51.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 11:43am

    This actually makes me laugh a bit reading all the comments in these threads. Every single company does this. They take advantage of a broken system. The hypocrisy comes with how blatant everyone is about it. "I will not buy another apple product because of this". down right laughable. You guys talk about apple fanboys, I would look in a mirror. If the roles were reversed, the conversation would go. "This is why i'll never buy an Apple Product, They copy all of android designs!" lmao.

    Its time you all removed your personal vendetta from the facts, stood back and took a look at the bigger picture. There are large negatives, and positives from each platform. Just because you have an opinion on a device doesn't make it a fact. On top of that devices change over time. I had someone the other day telling me how shitty my iPad was because it doesn't run Flash, when if you stood back took a big picture, you'd realize that flash doesn't mean shit any more. Hell when I built my Windows 7 PC, I forgot to install flash and didn't even notice for about three weeks. When you step back and become platform neutral, the shit that some of you write is quite comical.

    On the topic at hand. Its the system that needs fixing, so that NO company can stifle competition. Competition is good for the consumer, and when a system of the government gets in the way of that competition its bad for everyone. But i'm not going to be a flat out idiot and think that no other company does this.

    Oh and on a side note - this is from someone who uses Windows 7, Mac OSX10.7, an IPad, an iPhone, and an HTC Evo on a daily basis. They all have their benefits, and their downsides, step back from the issue and think about your response before you come off sounding like an idiot.

     

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  52.  
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    Simple Mind (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 11:44am

    Re: Re:

    Or current tv manufacturers like samsung sue them. What goes around comes around. Is apple tv not a rectangular shape?

     

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  53.  
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    Simple Mind (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 11:47am

    Re:

    That's even worse.

     

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  54.  
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    The eejit (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 11:49am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Unless you're calling it an iBox.

     

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  55.  
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    Hephaestus (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 12:02pm

    Re:

    On top of Etch-A-Sketch you also have 2001 a space odyssey, comic books, star trek TNG, and a host of other places where the tablet computer has appeared.

     

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  56.  
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    Hephaestus (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 12:06pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    It is not a failure of capitalism. It is a success of capitalism and a failure of government. Specifically a failure of politicians to prevent monopolies and to actively seek to create them for corporate interests.

     

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  57.  
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    Hephaestus (profile), Jun 27th, 2012 @ 12:10pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Thank Goodness!

    "have you ever looked at one of your own posts and wondered if you had a stroke halfway through?"

    Every time I go back and edit a previous line then click submit not preview.

     

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  58.  
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    kenichi tanaka, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 1:05pm

    Apple didn't get the Samsung Galaxy Tablet banned, only in halting U.S. sales. Not only that, but the Techdirt write-up fails to mention that Apple also had to post a $2.6 million dollar bond in case they lose.

    This is just another example of the copyright and trademark industry using their patents, copyrights and trademarks to stifle innovation, competition and business.

    When there are competing products on the market, everyone wins. Apple is just abusing their patents to halt Samsung sales because they don't want competition for their own products.

     

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  59.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 1:14pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    It will probably have rounded corners. :p

     

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  60.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 1:36pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Not to mention the generous tax credits enjoyed by manufacturers for sending jobs abroad. And then again there's also the allure of no safety standards, no overtime, no health insurance, no paid vacations, no paid holidays, etc.

    Are there any consumer electronic devices made in the US?

     

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  61.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 1:38pm

    Re:

    My problem with Apple isnt their sue-happy lawyers, or their fear of competing by creating superior tech, my problem with Apple is they are a walled garden that is very consumer unfriendly, imo.

    Thats why I prefer Android, thats why I prefer PC gaming to console gaming, and thats why I prefered windows to OSX, but now that MS is chasing after Apple and putting up their own walls around windows, its why I now prefer Linux.

    I have no desire to be wilting flower in Apples or Microsofts garden.

     

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  62.  
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    Ninja (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 3:28am

    Re: Re:

    Yes he was an arsehole. Brilliant no doubt. But I didn't like him anyways. Litigating is counterproductive. As I pointed after they successfully litigate Samsung out of existence (yea, right...) they'll have to deal with HTC, Asus, LG, Motorola..........

    But my point actually was that they should be focusing on innovation. Their next iThing will be the same as the last, just with better hardware. Same their competitors are doing and at that they'll eventually outsmart Apple as the droid gadgets get more user friendly and powerful and they 'copy' the good parts of the iThings. Truth to be said, Apple does it right even in the packages that contain the iThings, they are gorgeous. I had a LG Arena and it was packed nicely too. Seems to be vanity only but these small details contribute to the brand. I wonder when Apple will become just another manufacturer. Or has it happened already?

     

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  63.  
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    William Chambers, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 6:09am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Yep, that would be the Google Tablet. ^_^

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  64.  
    identicon
    patent litigation, Jul 3rd, 2012 @ 8:43pm

    clear case

    No matter what one's opinion of market competition and/or patent enforcement, there is one rather telling fact in this case: reportedly, it came out in court that not even Samsung's own legal counsel could tell the difference, visually, between the iPad and the Galaxy Tab. This seems to me to present a pretty clear case for patent litigation.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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