Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 7th May 2014 10:43 UTC
Legal

One single paragraph from one of the many court documents (via!) in the ongoing legal battle between Apple and Samsung. One single paragraph that not only perfectly highlights the hypocrisy of technology companies, but also the complete and utter disjoint between a technology company's legal, marketing, and engineering departments.

Contrary to the image it has cultivated in the popular press, Apple has admitted in internal documents that its strength is not in developing new technologies first, but in successfully commercializing them. When Apple was developing its campaign to promote the first iPhone, it considered - and rejected - advertisements that touted alleged Apple "firsts" with the iPhone. As one Apple employee explained to an overly exuberant Apple marketer, "I don't know how many things we can come up with that you can legitimately claim we did first. Certainly we have the first successful versions of many features, but that's different than launching something to market first." In this vein, the employee methodically explained that Palm, Nokia and others had first invented the iPhone's most prominent features.

The marketing department has no clue about the technology it needs to advertise. The legal department cleverly writes its patent application despite knowing full well that the technology it tries to patent is not new. Meanwhile, the engineer - the actual person implementing the technology - knows exactly what is going on, but is gagged from openly speaking his or her mind. The only thing I'm not sure about is which of these three is the biggest hypocrite.

Intellectual property - and patents in particular - has ruined the technology industry with lies, deceit, and hypocrisy. We just stood by and let it happen.

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RE[9]: Comment by henderson101
by pandronic on Fri 9th May 2014 11:00 UTC in reply to "RE[8]: Comment by henderson101"
pandronic
Member since:
2006-05-18

Yes, because marketing worked on them.

Listen, there are very few things at the moment or in the past 15 years that you can truly call revolutionary in the IT world. Most of it was evolutionary - people and companies putting their building blocks on top of other people's building blocks. Apple did this, Microsoft did this, Google did this, everybody did this. Apple did not create capacitive touch screens, nor did they invent multi-touch or touch interfaces. They took an existing concept and built upon it.

Apple and Google took different approaches to building their platforms, approaches that brought them more or less to the same place today. In the beginning Apple made their products very polished, but very limiting - hence the silky smooth performance. Google took the Swiss army knife approach, making their devices into mini-PCs that could also make calls - hence the versatility of early Android devices compared to iDevices, but also the questionable performance.

In time, Apple made their products more versatile and Google optimized their products making them smoother. So, technically, at the moment you can't go wrong with either platform (as long as you don't buy a $10 underpowered piece of crap phone with Android 2.3).

Now, about the innovation - I'm not saying that Apple doesn't innovate, but so does Google and Samsung and Microsoft and Nokia and everyone in tech. Every time they come up with a new feature - that is innovation. There's nothing special about that. But Apple has the marketing genius to make people believe that they are the only ones that innovate and invent new things even when they're not the first ones to the table. Here comes into play the hypocrisy that Thom was mentioning. They know very well what they invented, where they innovated and where not. But they can't admit any of that publicly because they have an image to maintain. Their products are sold by image alone.

Also they made it about status. There are a lot of (shallow) people that think that because you don't have an Apple (or lately to my surprise a Samsung!?) you are poor or out of touch or old fashioned.

And also there are a lot of not technical people who don't know that Android 4.3+ is light years from 4.0 or 2.3 and think that Android devices are laggy and slow. These are the same people that don't need flexibility and freedom or don't understand that these traits have a noticeable cost in terms of performance (fortunately that is not the case anymore and most Android 4.4 devices are silky smooth).

On the marketing front things are a little different. Google and their partners have a multitude of marketing strategies, usually centered around certain products, where it's all about the features. Apple on the other hand is focusing more on the subjective and emotional side - how does your device make you feel, how does it make you look etc. Because it doesn't appeal to your rational side they can also charge a premium for it.

That is why there are the hundreds of millions of people swearing by Apple's products and that's why they are willing to pay an (unjustified) premium on their products. Don't get me wrong, there are also people paying too much for certain over-hyped Android devices.

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