Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sat 8th Sep 2012 02:09 UTC, submitted by MOS6510
Mozilla & Gecko clones "The smartphones going into the world's next two billion pairs of hands may not belong to either Google or Apple, but to Mozilla. The Mozilla Foundation, which oversees open source software projects like the Firefox Web browser, expects to release a mobile operating system for smartphones early next year. Its target market is Latin America, then the rest of the developing world, where smartphones from Apple and Google are still too expensive for most people." Let's hope so, because at the rate things are currently going, we'll end up with like 90% Android, 9% iOS, and 1% other stuff. Who wants that?
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RE: Who wants that?
by feydun on Sat 8th Sep 2012 05:30 UTC in reply to "Who wants that?"
feydun
Member since:
2012-02-27

But if we could also see something different from Mozilla, maybe even something from WebOS and Meego/Tizen, then it would be more fun watching Microsoft trying to pretend that it owns the IP to all these platforms.

At the moment it just threatens Android-distributing companies, hinting broadly that it has a bunch of other applicable patents other than the few that it's only prepared to specify under NDA, and that if they just pay up it'll charge them a reasonable fee, again under NDA, and of course that it has the cash for expensive litigation.

Of course as each new company signs up for this protection racket it becomes more convincing. However if this bullying gets spread more thinly across a wider range of systems, eventually someone will call the bluff, or else Microsoft will have to claim such wide applicability of their IP that it will also apply to Apple products, and then we can buy some popcorn and watch the show.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Who wants that?
by cyrilleberger on Sat 8th Sep 2012 05:57 in reply to "RE: Who wants that?"
cyrilleberger Member since:
2006-02-01

But if we could also see something different from Mozilla, maybe even something from WebOS and Meego/Tizen, then it would be more fun watching Microsoft trying to pretend that it owns the IP to all these platforms.


Considering they have been hammering companies with the FAT patent that mostly concern the linux kernel, they won't have any problem to attack other platforms.

If they haven't done it so far, it is just because those platform are pennyless.

Of course as each new company signs up for this protection racket it becomes more convincing. However if this bullying gets spread more thinly across a wider range of systems, eventually someone will call the bluff, or else Microsoft will have to claim such wide applicability of their IP that it will also apply to Apple products, and then we can buy some popcorn and watch the show.


You can make some saving on the popcorn, Apple and MS have a cross-patents deal.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[3]: Who wants that?
by feydun on Sat 8th Sep 2012 23:27 in reply to "RE[2]: Who wants that?"
feydun Member since:
2012-02-27

CyrilleBerger: I'm aware of those points, but my hypothetical argument still stands. I mean that hard core patent infringement covering all platforms would be harder for microsoft, and if it went insanely general (which is perfectly possible) it would bring it into conflict with apple.

I know that the alternative platforms are off the radar, including even bada, but they can't accuse android of infringing something and then ignore another platform doing the same thing.
On the other hand...
http://www.osnews.com/story/26322/Apple_vs_DRI_the_i_other_i_look-a...

The apple-microsoft agreement relates to design patents, ie soft not hard technology, and even then with a non-copying proviso which basically means that they have an agreement not to troll each other but can sue for genuine infringement.

The VFAT stuff is not such a big deal, for a start because the last of the android-relevant patents on that will have expired a year from now, and because these are just "tasters" that microsoft opens its negotiations (threats) with. They also threaten a very large number of relevant patents which may not be relevant but expensive to prove that. I can only remember microsoft using VFAT to sue TomTom, because they knew they would cave in, and more recently motorola, because they needed something that they stood a chance of succeeding with and they were prepared to use one of their expiring trumps.

Edited 2012-09-08 23:38 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: Who wants that?
by bassbeast on Sat 8th Sep 2012 11:23 in reply to "RE: Who wants that?"
bassbeast Member since:
2007-11-11

I hate to break the news to ya, but Android DOES infringe, and so does Linux. How do I know? Because the US patent office has been handing out insanely vague patents and more importantly upholding them, that's how.

You really do have to give MS credit, they played the game VERY well. they filed pile after pile of patents, and they knew the one company who might have more in mobile was Apple so they signed a cross licensing agreement with them that took them out of the game. Made great sense for Apple as well because MS has always been a low margin high volume seller, which is a market Apple doesn't care about, and both Apple and MS want Android to DIAF, since both sell products while Google sells eyeballs.

But as we saw with the FAT patents they can stick it to any bunch at any time, FOSS or not, because they literally have mountains of patents and the competition don't. Why do you think Google won't indemnify those that use Android? because MS would love a crack at Google's big fat wallet and with as many patents as they have they could easily get a half dozen or more to stick.

So like 'em or hate 'em give them credit, they've set it up so no matter whose product is on the phone they STILL get paid.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Who wants that?
by sparkyERTW on Mon 10th Sep 2012 14:36 in reply to "RE[2]: Who wants that?"
sparkyERTW Member since:
2010-06-09

I hate to break the news to ya, but Android DOES infringe, and so does Linux. How do I know? Because the US patent office has been handing out insanely vague patents and more importantly upholding them, that's how.


No, you don't know; you're making an assumption based on deductive logic. A reasonable and likely accurate assumption nonetheless, but still an assumption (and let me point out I'm not saying this stuff to berate you, I'm just setting up a point).

This is a big part of the problem; towering giants like Microsoft are allowed to throw around claims of infringement without having to provide any substantial evidence. Somehow this is perfectly fine. If I made the public statement "LG microwaves are shown to give babies cancer" without a shred of evidence, LG could sue me for libel. Yet MS/Apple claiming thievery is perfectly acceptable as long as they point to a mountainous landscape of paperwork behind them and say, "See all that? Clearly we have it in there somewhere... 'it' being the thing we're claiming you stole... which we're not going to name."

How crap like this doesn't fall under libel, extortion, etc., I have no idea.

Reply Parent Score: 1