Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sat 3rd Aug 2013 20:34 UTC
Legal The Obama administration:

After extensive consultations with the agencies of the Trade Policy Staff Committee and the Trade Policy Review Group, as well as other interested agencies and persons, I have decided to disapprove the USITC's determination to issue an exclusion order and cease and desist order in this investigation.

Lots of talk about SEPs and FRAND in Obama's decree, which means that the Obama administration contradicts everything the ITC has said. To freshen your memory, the ITC ruled that not only was the patent in question not a standard essential patent, but Samsung's offer was actually proper FRAND:

Additionally, the Commission found that there were still disputed issues concerning the patent at issue was even actually essential to the standard (and therefore whether a FRAND or disclosure obligation applied at all).

[...]

The Commission analyzed the history of negotiations between Apple and Samsung (this portion is heavily redacted) to see if Apple showed that Samsung failed to negotiate “in good faith,” and found that Apple failed to do so. Notably, the Commission dismissed Apple’s arguments that (1) Samsung’s initial offer was so high as to show bad faith, and (2) Samsung’s attempts to get a cross-license to Apple’s non-SEPs violated its FRAND commitments.

In other words, the Obama administration threw out virtually everything the ITC has said in order to protect Apple. This effectively means that American companies can infringe on non-American companies' (standard essential) patents all they want, because the president will simply step in if they try to fight back.

So, I was wrong. I expected the Obama administration to be impartial and not give such a huge slap in the face of the ITC - as cynical as I usually am, I can still be naive. Protectionism is more important to the POTUS.

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RE: Speak with your wallet
by Tony Swash on Sun 4th Aug 2013 17:10 UTC in reply to "Speak with your wallet"
Tony Swash
Member since:
2009-08-22

Why Apple's cult of followers wait in line for hours to buy this junk simply defies logic.


No it doesn't. You cannot see anything attractive about Apple products but if you made a very small intellectual effort you could work what other people see in them. Here are some clues.

Apple products have a well known reputation for being designed for ease of use.

Because Apple offers a complete service and product stack Apple product users don't have to be system integrators, the amount of troubleshooting required to get Apple products and services to work together is small compared to market norms.

Apple has the best content stack attached to it's products (the totality of apps, music, films, TV, ebooks, educational materials, etc).

Apple products retain their value very well compared to market averages.

Apple has a premium brand reputation

Apple products are well designed and attractive.

Apple comes at the top or near the top of most surveys of customer satisfaction and customer support. Any discerning consumer will see this early in their product research.

Apple's retail outlets have a very high standard of customer support and if anything goes wrong are generally very helpful. The level of support and help available in an Apple retail store is an order of magnitude better than the market average.

Apple's product range is simple and easy understand, for example compare this:
http://www.gsmarena.com/samsung-phones-9.php
to this
http://store.apple.com/uk/iphone/family/iphone/compare

This not to argue that you or anyone else should buy Apple products, merely it is showing that the reason so many people do, and indeed get quite enthusiastic about Apple products, is not illogical. None of the things I listed have happened by chance, they were all deliberately designed and implemented to make customers enthusiastic about Apple products.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: Speak with your wallet
by novad on Sun 4th Aug 2013 19:06 in reply to "RE: Speak with your wallet"
novad Member since:
2010-06-10

@Tony

I very often disagree with what you say but this time I have to admit that most of your arguments make sense Give my just the possibility to add my 2 cents on a few points you didn't mention.

All what you described explains why people buy Apple products, not why they stay in line for hours in the rain to buy the last iWhatever sometimes even without knowing what in detail it is.

To all the rational points you gave you must add the fanaticism of a non negligible part of these followers.

Their Brand fidelity is sometimes close to a cult. I've never seen that in other domains (Except some HI-FI nerds).

There's another reason than satisfaction why some people continue to buy Apple products once they started.

It's anecdotal but it happened to not so few people I personally know.

The closed and fully integrated Apple ecosystem you praise is at the same time a great comfort when you use it but a big problem when you want to move to something else. Those people don't want to lose all they had to pay for, especially their multimedia files. They simply don't know how to transfer it to a more open system and stay prisoners with Apple.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Speak with your wallet
by MOS6510 on Sun 4th Aug 2013 19:56 in reply to "RE[2]: Speak with your wallet"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

I can copy multimedia files from my Macs and play them on Windows and Linux systems.

A more valid point would be iOS apps that don't work on non-iOS devices. Or Mac software.

Then again, it's the same going from other systems to iOS/OS X.

Reply Parent Score: 2

Tony Swash Member since:
2009-08-22

@Tony

I very often disagree with what you say but this time I have to admit that most of your arguments make sense Give my just the possibility to add my 2 cents on a few points you didn't mention.

All what you described explains why people buy Apple products, not why they stay in line for hours in the rain to buy the last iWhatever sometimes even without knowing what in detail it is.

To all the rational points you gave you must add the fanaticism of a non negligible part of these followers.

Their Brand fidelity is sometimes close to a cult. I've never seen that in other domains (Except some HI-FI nerds).


Apple are a very, very successful brand, a brand that generates a very high level of loyalty, enthusiasm and affection. Apple deliberately built that brand and continue to build and support it. Having a brand like that is not accident, it's the result of a particular business model, a style of corporate communication and marketing, a particular corporate management system (built around functions and not product divisions for example) and a style and philosophy of product design.

Quite a few other products and other brands have had a similar degree of loyalty and enthusiasm, think of the lines for big game launches, a new Harry Potter, the lines that formed before the Windows 95 launch. Getting that sort of customer response is a precious commodity for companies but getting it is very difficult, some companies or products achieve it fleetingly, but Apple have managed to sustain it for years. That is not an accident nor is it some weird inexplicable phenomena as long as one is willing to pick it apart, analyse it and accept that it has real and material causes, that it is a result of a way of doing business and a way of making products.

There's another reason than satisfaction why some people continue to buy Apple products once they started.

It's anecdotal but it happened to not so few people I personally know.

The closed and fully integrated Apple ecosystem you praise is at the same time a great comfort when you use it but a big problem when you want to move to something else. Those people don't want to lose all they had to pay for, especially their multimedia files. They simply don't know how to transfer it to a more open system and stay prisoners with Apple.


That's true and that too is deliberate on the part of Apple but the degree of cost and inconvenience associated with leaving the Apple ecosystem when one has accumulated a contents or data library is mostly over stated, but it does have a cost. The fact of the matter is that if a large percentage of Apple customers were unhappy with their Apple products or really wanted to move onto new non-Apple products they would find a way to deal with the inconvenience of switching ecosystems but all the surveys show the same thing, Apple customers are more loyal to Apple products than other companies customers are too theirs. The costs of switching ecosystems is real but it's only a part of the reason, and not the determining reason, for people sticking with Apple. If Apple produced a line of bad products, unreliable, poorly designed, with poor customer support, they would lose their customer base pretty quickly and no amount of ecosystem lock in would prevent it.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Speak with your wallet
by theinonen on Sun 4th Aug 2013 19:34 in reply to "RE: Speak with your wallet"
theinonen Member since:
2009-10-06



Apple comes at the top or near the top of most surveys of customer satisfaction and customer support. Any discerning consumer will see this early in their product research.


It only shows Apple users have more problems with their products than users of other brands and they have more dealings with support than others.

I see no reason why anyone would even take part on these surveys if they never have had any dealings with customer support at first place. Apple users also like to promote their systems more than others and it gives false impression of how things are in real life.

For computers that just work people seem to have lots of problems with them. I only need to take quick look at local Apple forum to see that those are very problematic systems indeed. (Or then it says something about the users...)

Reply Parent Score: 2

brichpmr Member since:
2006-04-22

"

Apple comes at the top or near the top of most surveys of customer satisfaction and customer support. Any discerning consumer will see this early in their product research.


It only shows Apple users have more problems with their products than users of other brands and they have more dealings with support than others.

I see no reason why anyone would even take part on these surveys if they never have had any dealings with customer support at first place. Apple users also like to promote their systems more than others and it gives false impression of how things are in real life.

For computers that just work people seem to have lots of problems with them. I only need to take quick look at local Apple forum to see that those are very problematic systems indeed. (Or then it says something about the users...)
"

All computer makers experience some amount of failures or problems. Many surveys over the past decade at least confirm that Apple is at the top when it comes to resolving those issues for their users. Obviously, you only experience Apple tech from a distance...understandable that you draw such erroneous conclusions.

Reply Parent Score: 1

Tony Swash Member since:
2009-08-22

"

Apple comes at the top or near the top of most surveys of customer satisfaction and customer support. Any discerning consumer will see this early in their product research.


It only shows Apple users have more problems with their products than users of other brands and they have more dealings with support than others.

I see no reason why anyone would even take part on these surveys if they never have had any dealings with customer support at first place. Apple users also like to promote their systems more than others and it gives false impression of how things are in real life.

For computers that just work people seem to have lots of problems with them. I only need to take quick look at local Apple forum to see that those are very problematic systems indeed. (Or then it says something about the users...)
"

What a silly response. I know the fact sometime hurt but just shutting your eyes does not make the scary bogeyman go away ;)

Both these data sources (and I can post loads more similar ones if you want) are based on obvious and sensible metrics

http://asq.org/qualitynews/qnt/execute/displaySetup?newsID=15469

http://www.zdnet.com/want-the-most-reliable-windows-pc-buy-a-mac-or...

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Speak with your wallet
by Lorin on Mon 5th Aug 2013 05:56 in reply to "RE: Speak with your wallet"
Lorin Member since:
2010-04-06

"Apple products have a well known reputation for being designed for ease of use".

Simpleton Friendly

Reply Parent Score: 5

Tony Swash Member since:
2009-08-22

"Apple products have a well known reputation for being designed for ease of use".

Simpleton Friendly


What crass and insecure posturing.

I presume you consider yourself a non-simpleton and thus prefer technology that is designed to be difficult to use. That makes sense

Reply Parent Score: 1