Linked by kristoph on Thu 8th Sep 2011 17:48 UTC
Legal Microsoft has announced today that it has reached patent licensing agreements with Acer and ViewSonic that cover Android smart phones and tablets. These companies join HTC [and several others] in paying Microsoft for each deployed Android device. Microsoft's strategic approach to Android is very different from Apple's. Where Apple is attempting to stop or otherwise delay the deployment of Android devices Microsoft is lining their coffers with royalties paid by OEMs for the privilege of shipping them. It's a strategy that is already generating more profit for Microsoft the its less then successful Windows Phone platform and could contribute dramatically to Microsofts bottom line going forward.
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RE[2]: Wakeup call
by kristoph on Thu 8th Sep 2011 22:56 UTC in reply to "RE: Wakeup call"
kristoph
Member since:
2006-01-01

The kernel is a commodity now, it's not a strategic differentiator.

The fact that Linux underpins Android is not really relevant because 99+% of all Android apps are written to run Android and would work fine on virtually any other kernel.

Does anyone really care that Android runs atop Linux? Would anyone care if it changed to NetBSD or QNX?

Similarly, if Apple moved to Linux tomorrow (and still called it iOS) no one would notice.

( Personally I've always wondered why Apple didn't adopt Linux. It's presence as the base of their platform would attract enterprise customers and it's not like they would lose anything. )

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[3]: Wakeup call
by _txf_ on Thu 8th Sep 2011 23:24 in reply to "RE[2]: Wakeup call"
_txf_ Member since:
2008-03-17

( Personally I've always wondered why Apple didn't adopt Linux. It's presence as the base of their platform would attract enterprise customers and it's not like they would lose anything. )


They lose control... and that is EVERYTHING to Apple.

Reply Parent Score: 7

RE[4]: Wakeup call
by kristoph on Fri 9th Sep 2011 04:11 in reply to "RE[3]: Wakeup call"
kristoph Member since:
2006-01-01

Why would they lose control? It's open source so they can do whatever they want with it.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[3]: Wakeup call
by lemur2 on Thu 8th Sep 2011 23:25 in reply to "RE[2]: Wakeup call"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Personally I've always wondered why Apple didn't adopt Linux. It's presence as the base of their platform would attract enterprise customers and it's not like they would lose anything.


Linux copyrights are owned by a large number of individuals, the versions you see distibuted to the general public are licensed under the GPL. The GPL gives broad permissions to recipients of the code (who are NOT the owners), including even permission to re-distribute it to others, but ONLY if the downstream recipients get all the same permissions as you got when you received Linux. This includes the requirement that downstream recipients must be able to get the source code.

Since Apple would not own the code, and must re-distribute the source code, effectively they cannot add anti-features to the code.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Damaged_good

"In economics, a damaged good (sometimes termed "crippleware" or product with "anti-features") is a good that has been deliberately limited in performance, quality or utility, typically for marketing reasons as part of a strategy of product differentiation."

Now Apple are not nearly as prone to adding anti-features to their OS as Microsoft are (think Windows 7 Starter, for an example), but nevertheless Apple would still like to prevent their users from getting good stuff for free.

This means that Linux is not suitable for distribution as part of a commercial desktop OS, from the pont of view of a commercial software vendor such as Microsoft or Apple, because it is not possible to restrict what the users get, which in turn means they cannot be sold after market upgrades.

This is kind of a "big secret" of the commercial OSes ... the vendors of commercial OSes do not want it to be generally known that the OSes they sell are crippleware.

Edited 2011-09-08 23:27 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[4]: Wakeup call
by JAlexoid on Thu 8th Sep 2011 23:56 in reply to "RE[3]: Wakeup call"
JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

There is a little fact that gets overlooked - iOS kernel (aka ARM XNU port) is not opensource...

It's all about control for Apple and making such little changes that they could keep for themselves. GPL is prevents that.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[4]: Wakeup call
by lucas_maximus on Fri 9th Sep 2011 09:55 in reply to "RE[3]: Wakeup call"
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

This means that Linux is not suitable for distribution as part of a commercial desktop OS, from the point of view of a commercial software vendor such as Microsoft or Apple, because it is not possible to restrict what the users get, which in turn means they cannot be sold after market upgrades.


Linux isn't suitable as a commercial OS because it doesn't work on the desktop, unless I am willing to give up doing all the stuff I take for granted or messing about working around incompatibility problems.

I can do pretty much anything with Windows I want.

I am sure you will bring up some odd edge cases that don't matter for a Desktop OS ... but anything sensible I can do with Windows.

This is kind of a "big secret" of the commercial OSes ... the vendors of commercial OSes do not want it to be generally known that the OSes they sell are crippleware.


No shit ... basically this rubbish boils down to "If something has more features, they charge more for it" ... This is standard in every industry and but because it is Software suddenly it is crippleware!!????

Stop talking absurd rubbish.

Reply Parent Score: 0

RE[4]: Wakeup call
by r_a_trip on Fri 9th Sep 2011 09:58 in reply to "RE[3]: Wakeup call"
r_a_trip Member since:
2005-07-06

because it is not possible to restrict what the users get

Except that the Linux kernel is licensed under the GPLv2 and Apple would be free to just Tivo-ize their specific kernel. What good does a modifiable kernel do, when your piece of hardware rejects it on the basis that the signing keys do not match?

I don't think it is control over the kernel per se, that kept Apple off of the Linux kernel. I wonder how much of the good stuff in OS X, like Display PDF, hooks deep into the kernel. It may be a matter of not wanting to release the desirable features of Apple's proprietary software to the general public on account of that General Public License.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Wakeup call
by Lennie on Fri 9th Sep 2011 10:56 in reply to "RE[2]: Wakeup call"
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

And what will happen with the Oracle/Google Java case ?

It is probably strange to predict the demise of Android but I just don't know what to think about this case.

It's gonna be a big case that is for sure.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[4]: Wakeup call
by glarepate on Fri 9th Sep 2011 20:36 in reply to "RE[3]: Wakeup call"
glarepate Member since:
2006-01-04

And what will happen with the Oracle/Google Java case ?

It is probably strange to predict the demise of Android but I just don't know what to think about this case.

It's gonna be a big case that is for sure.


It's, IMO, a big case now. But I'm not sure that it's going to remain a big case.

Compare the coverage at fosspatents to that on groklaw(.net) and you will see widely divergent opinions. ZDNet tends to repackage the fosspatents stuff and call it their own.

The presiding judge has appointed a magistrate to supervise the mediation between Oracle and Google and has "strongly suggested" that the two Larrys represent their individual companies but has left that decision up to the magistrate.

http://www.itworld.com/201315/judge-wants-ellison-page-sit-down-and...

He already threw out the $6.some-odd billion damages claim by Oracle and told them to submit a new one with no extra time to file it. And an awful lot of their best patent claims, after he made them reduce the number to make the case 'triable', have been tossed on re-examination by the USPTO examiner.

I can't say that I know what to make of it either at this point. But most court cases of this type don't go to trial and the outcomes of those that do (excluding SCO v World) are by no means easy to predict. I think it will become more apparent which way things are leaning once more progress toward a trial is made.

Reply Parent Score: 2