Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Apple v. Google

Apple’s late CEO, Steve Jobs, had felt that Android, an operating system for mobile devices developed by Google, was copied from Apple’s iPhone. But Google maintains it developed Android independently.
So far, Apple has done nothing to Google, directly at least. It sued Samsung, which is being viewed by people and analyst all over, as just a collateral damage. It would be difficult for Apple to prove that Google is benefiting financially from patent infringement, or that Google, and not the hardware manufacturers, is directly responsible for potential damages caused to Apple.
Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd is a South Korean multinational electronics and information technology company. It is the world's largest mobile phone maker, world's largest television manufacturer and world's second-largest semiconductor chip maker (after Intel Corporation).
Apple Inc. is an American multinational corporation that designs and sells consumer electronics, computer software, and personal computers. Apple is the world's third-largest mobile phone maker after Samsung and Nokia.
On 15 April 2011, Apple Inc. Sued Samsung Electronics Co. stating that several of Samsung's Android phones and tablets, including the Nexus S, Epic 4G, Galaxy S 4G, and the Samsung Galaxy Tab, infringed on Apple’s intellectual property: its patents, trademarks, user interface and style.
Samsung counter sued Apple on 22 April, 2011, alleging Apple infringed Samsung's patents for mobile-communications technologies.
By July 2012, the two companies were still involved in more than 50 lawsuits around the globe, with billions of dollars in damages claimed between them.
On 24 August, 2012, A South Korean court delivered a split decision. It ruled that Apple had violated two Samsung patents, while Samsung violated one of Apple’s. The Seoul Central District Court ordered both companies to halt sales of electronic products that infringe patents in South Korea. It also ordered Apple to pay a nominal 20 million won for each of its patent violations, while Samsung was ordered to compensate Apple with 25 million won, (Won is the currency of South Korea.)
Also, on the same day, a jury in San José, California, awarded Apple $1.05bn damages from Samsung after finding it had infringed several of Apple's design and software patents. The jury rejected the South Korean firm's counterclaims that the iPhone-maker had failed to license its technologies.
Samsung reacted by saying it will contest the US verdict. It could get an appeals court to delay any potential sales ban, which would give it time to bring new, modified products to the market.
The final ruling in the case is still pending, because in theory the judge could triple the size of the payment since the jury said Samsung's actions had been "willful", meaning the defendant engaged in acts that infringed the copyright; and defendant knew that those acts infringed the copyright.

In addition, Apple has asked a court to ban eight Samsung mobile phones in the US. The phones include the Galaxy S 4G, Galaxy S2 AT&T model, Galaxy S2 Skyrocket, Galaxy S2 T-Mobile model, Galaxy S2 Epic 4G, Galaxy S Showcase, Droid Charge and Galaxy Prevail. The company has asked the US District Court in San Jose, California, for a preliminary injunction on the Samsung products, while a permanent injunction is sought.
Even though the companies are rivals, they have a $5 billion-plus supply relationship. Apple is Samsung's biggest customer for microprocessors and other parts central to Apple's devices. It supplies DRAM and NAND-type memory chips and flat screens used in popular Apple gadgets.
Currently, Samsung hopes to retain that business relationship through a "strict internal firewall" dividing its handset business and components operations.
Apple has been looking to spread its supply chain to reduce its dependence on Samsung. For its part, Samsung is also diversifying its customer base to reduce its dependence to Apple like adding new clients. But neither has confirmed having another buyer or supplier.
All the mobile phones that Apple has asked to be banned have the mobile operating system Android.
So, was Apple’s victory over Samsung just a way to rattle Google?


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