Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sun 26th Aug 2012 10:28 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless In light of the jury verdict in Apple vs. Samsung, the one-liners and jokes flew back and forth. One in particular, by Dan Frakes, has been copied and pasted all over the web, and it goes like this: "When the iPhone debuted, it was widely criticized for having no buttons/keys. Now people think the iPhone's design is 'obvious'." This is a very common trend in this entire debate that saddens me to no end: the iPhone is being compared to simple feature phones, while in fact, it should be compared to its true predecessor: the PDA. PDAs have always done with few buttons.
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Tony Swash
Member since:
2009-08-22

A small initial point: I love the reduction of the role and significance of the Newton in your timeline to just a throw away reference in parenthesis. At least you are consistent.

I could argue the toss about this forever with you Thom, and with other motley bunch of techies, Apple haters and Android fans who want to minimise the role of Apple's innovation in the history of personal computing and to insist that the iPhone was just another incremental step in an evolution wrought mostly by others.

But why bother? You are not going to change you mind and frankly neither am I.

What is worth discussing is the significance of the Samsung-Apple verdict and what it means for the future. It seems fairly clear that given the opportunity to put to a jury its more or less full portfolio of evidence and testimony that Apple will stand a good chance of winning more such trials in the future.

So where does this leave Android, Google and the Android OEM community? If as seems likely this case marks a watershed after which Android OEMs will feel more vulnerable to legal attacks from Apple and have to restrict their product development to take on board the judgements handed down in this case, what should Google do? Should it counter attack with Motorola patents and escalate the legal war? Should it accept the partial but strategic victory that Apple has won and try to route around it?

What advice would you give Google about how they should exercise leadership in the Android ecosystem?

It seems clear to me that up until now Android has been a fire and forget weapon for Google, make it, releases it and just let things fall as they will. Google has positively tried to avoid exercising the same sort of hegemonic that Microsoft did in the old Windows ecosystem. Should Google take a more active role in managing the Android OEM community? Can it do that given that within that community so much power has accrued to Samsung?

I am posing such questions in a genuine way. The endless repeating of 'it's not fair' in ever more complex and well researched ways takes the debate no where. It happened, Apple won a big one, what happens next for Android and Google? I want to hear what a considered piece of advice would be from those that love Google and Android, those who want it to succeed.

Reply Parent Score: -2

bouhko Member since:
2010-06-24

I don't think I'me really and Android *fan* (I don't really give a shit about a huge corporation losing some billion dollars, be it Apple, Google or Samsung), but I'm an open source software supporter, so I prefer Android over iOS.

Now, given the state of the software and design patent laws in the US, I don't find the outcome so surprising or outrageous. This is because it seems there was some evidence (notably Google telling Samsung not to copy Apple) that Samsung was actually trying to copy the iPhone with their Galaxy line. Even the homescreens look the same, it's really f--king stupid. I mean Android vanilla homescreen is pretty different from iPhone's.

Now, most other Android phones I've seen are pretty different from iPhones. For example, I don't see Apple winning a case against Google's Nexus brand or against HTC (I've got an Evo 3D). The hardware isn't similar and neither is the software. Plus, Apple also copied some stuff from Android (notifications come to mind).

So in the end, the least innovative phone line in the Android ecosystem got punished.

That being said, I still think the whole patent system is broken, but that's another discussion.

Edited 2012-08-26 15:42 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

some1 Member since:
2010-10-05

This is because it seems there was some evidence (notably Google telling Samsung not to copy Apple)

This was not a legal advice, though.

Even the homescreens look the same

No, they don't. When Apple shows Android phones they always show the app drawer instead of the home screen, because it looks a lot more like iPhone's home screen.

For example, I don't see Apple winning a case against Google's Nexus brand

Then you're missing the fact that Nexus S was found infringing.

Reply Parent Score: 3

BallmerKnowsBest Member since:
2008-06-02

A small initial point: I love the reduction of the role and significance of the Newton in your timeline to just a throw away reference in parenthesis. At least you are consistent.


I love the way you don't actually try to offer any counter-argument & just throw out some substance-free snark instead. At least you're consistent.

I could argue the toss about this forever with you Thom, and with other motley bunch of techies,


Not that it would take much effort, since you basically just copy-paste the same talking points over & over again.

Apple haters


Still borrowing rhetoric from Twilight & Justin Bieber's tween fangirls, I see.

and Android fans who try to counter the absurd mythology preached by iFanboys, describing a self-serving fantasy-world where smartphones didn't exist before the iPhone.


There, fixed that for you.

The endless repeating of 'it's not fair' in ever more complex and well researched ways takes the debate no where.


....remind me again, how many times now have you re-posted almost the exact same "but... but... Google is advertising company!!!!!" spiel? You can guesstimate if you like, probably easiest to round to the nearest thousand.

Reply Parent Score: 5

Tony Swash Member since:
2009-08-22

I was trying to point people such as yourself away from the sterile war of rhetoric with Apple fans, a debate that's probably going nowhere, towards a more pressing debate and one which is of some consequence. What happens now? Apple won big, it may be overturned on appeal but probably not, and Apple will continue to move forward with more aggressive legal actions, and will probably win more cases. I repeat what happens now? If you support Google and Android then what strategy is best from now on? To escalate the IP wars? To change course and concentrate on product differentiation and try to out design Apple? I am genuinely interested in that debate and in hearing what people such as yourself think about such questions.

BTW - Google is an advertising company. If you think different perhaps could you point me at some of the non-advertising products that Google sells and what proportion of the company's revenues they generate. The latest figures I have seen say Google gets 95% of it's revenue from ads.

Reply Parent Score: 1