Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 24th Sep 2009 23:19 UTC
Legal There's news in the Apple vs. Psystar saga, and even though I know I promised not to report on this for a while, this news is a pretty important development, and we're more than two weeks down the road anyway. As you all know, Psystar filed a second lawsuit concerning specifically Snow Leopard in Florida, and Apple motioned to have the case combined with the Apple vs. Psystar case running in California, claiming there is no difference between the two. Judge Alsup has denied this request.
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RE[2]: Not sure...
by redbeard on Fri 25th Sep 2009 18:11 UTC in reply to "RE: Not sure..."
Member since:

The problem is that Apple needs to show an added benefit for the "upgrade" label to apply, generally.

I don't know of any reason this is a problem. Where are there legal requirements related to this? All they need to do is change something (fix a single bug, change the splash screen) and they can market it anyway they want "NEW AND IMPROVED". They can also charge anything they want.

If the new "upgrade" version of MacOS X was released at the same price point as the old "FULL" version, then there seems not to be any added benefit for such a label to offer protection, legally.

Again they can charge what ever they want to for their product and easily justify charging more for full product verses an upgrade to an existing OS. If I 'upgrade' my WinME license to Vista it is not a real upgrade it is a full new operating system, no real upgrade path. With MS even if you could upgrade you also had the option to do a clean install of the new system.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[3]: Not sure...
by looncraz on Sat 26th Sep 2009 03:23 in reply to "RE[2]: Not sure..."
looncraz Member since:

You misunderstand my comment a bit. You are not wrong, though ;-)

What I mean is that Apple can't simply rename an existing product and expect the law to care. They MUST, generally, show something very different for the new meaning to take effect.

A standard upgrade is not an 'upgrade version' in the software industry's standard vocabulary - which the judge would likely use in consideration.

The real problem is that this is largely untested waters. If the two products are 100% considered exclusive of the other, then the latest MacOS X 'upgrade' moniker could hold some weight in the second case. BUT, if the law merely sees them as different iterations of the same product (which is what is the case), then this changes things considerably.

This is to say that an 'upgrade' is not the same as an 'upgrade version.'

Microsoft nor Apple has any requirement to provide upgrade versions of their software to the retail channel, beyond some contractual obligations perhaps, BUT they do have to abide by the law when they do so in order for their non-signatory contracts to mean anything (EULAs / TOUs).

Microsoft does this by lowering the price on the upgrade versions. Apple could copy this by raising the price of MacOS X considerably, but changing tune and unlocking OS X from the hardware in full versions, but only supporting real Apple hardware in any official manner.

The "upgrade version" would be what they currently sell, except locked to the hardware. And the price could remain the same as is today, but is a relative discount to the price hike.

Then, if anyone hacks the upgrade version, Apple has the following going for them:

1. OS X "Upgrade Version" has a distinctive value from the unencumbered retail version

2. Support costs are a part of the hardware system, not the software product.

3. A renewal fee for continued support is included with each "Upgrade Version."

4. Sales of the higher priced full version will increase the costs of would-be cloners, reducing their ability to compete on price.

5. Apple makes money on each clone... even more than they do now, anyway.

I think you get the idea :-)

Of course, the way it should be.. and the it ends up being are far too often too far removed to make things like this truly predictable.

--The loon

Reply Parent Score: 2