HTC has, quite rightly, decried
the insanity of the patent thicket
in the smartphone arena. In fact, some clueless analyst had written a note suggesting that HTC was at risk because it didn't
have enough patents. The idea that quantity
of patents matters is a really scary thought, but with the way the patent system works today, companies who have no desire to own patents are increasingly being pressured into doing so. Thus, HTC has been in the process of getting its hands on as many patents as possible
, both by ramping up its own patent application filings, and by buying others patents (such as via the purchase of S3
As someone who has used a bunch of HTC phones over the years, all of this is pretty depressing. I'd much rather the company focus on doing what it does best: building cool smartphones and devices. While our broken system may be forcing it to invest in patents (and patent litigation), wouldn't we all be better served by letting it (and others) focus on building cool products to compete in the marketplace? Or is that just too old fashioned an idea?