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Google Has Had Enough: Files Lawsuit To Ban Multiple Apple Products

Eric McBride
50

 

I knew this day would come. I can’t say that I hoped for it, but in all honesty, it was inevitable. Apple has been very busy lately in doing all it can to ban as many Android devices as it can, and HTC, Samsung, and Motorola have all recently got a small taste of the Apple juice lately. But something has changed: Google now owns Motorola, and aren’t wasting any time in defending their new acquisition, as they are now seeking a sales ban on the iPhone, iPad, and Mac computers in the US. This time, it’s personal, and contains a twist that could potentially make this particular lawsuit a very dangerous one for Apple.

This is the first case that Google has signed off on in defending their new hardware company, meaning that there’s no more lurking in the background providing support. This is full on Google with their law team directly involved. This isn't Google watching from the sidelines, but instead, they are calling this one play by play. But Google and Motorola were clever, as this isn't a lawsuit that focuses on silly topics such as icons or square shaped tablets.

Google and Motorola are claiming patent infringement for non-standard essential patents. To put it simply, Google-rola has filed a case for a patent that courts cannot legally force companies to license, meaning that if they win this case, Apple could be forced to completely stop using the technology in their devices.

We don’t have confirmation on exactly which patent (reportedly "wifi related") is in question here, but we do know that Motorola attempted to reach licensing agreements with Apple (since 2010), which Apple apparently refused. Motorola stated that:

We would like to settle these patent matters, but Apple’s unwillingness to work out a license leaves us little choice but to defend ourselves and our engineers’ innovations”.

(UPDATE: (FOSS Patents is reporting that one of the non standard essential patents in question is for a "sensor controlled user interface for portable communication device", but does not directly specify a wifi related patent. There is still one more non standard essential patent in question, but the specifics of this patent aren't clear at this time. I will contact FOSS Patents and ZDNET (source) for new developments).

This is a big one for Google and for Apple. This isn’t just an OEM that Apple is dealing with now. This is one of the most powerful (if not THE most powerful) movers and shakers in the world. If this comes to trial, Apple could really have its hands full, and might even be forced to rely on Microsoft for backup. **shudders**

The patent wars involving Android and Apple have now reached new heights, and with Google in the center, I have a feeling that things could get very very ugly for the companies that have sought to ban Android products. That being said, you never know how this case could go with the state of the current patent system. 

Additional souces: Bloomberg and Mobilenapps

P.S - I still can't believe this article has gone SO viral. We didn't even break this story, and as you can see, I wrote it over a week ago ! Thank you so much for helping spread it around, and I will do my best to update it with more information as I receive it. If you happen to get your hands on information that's not so public yet, let me know so I can update the article!

Picture credits: Vimeo.com (edited by myself)

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  • David F Jan 6, 2013 Link

    Just saw this pop up: http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/business/technology/on-google-ftc-set-rules-of-war-over-patents-669157/. I'm still totally new to the android world, so I'm kind of playing catch-up on this issue. Love androidpit! Finally an enthusiast site that's worth a d#@&%!

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  • Rutger Sep 5, 2012 Link

    Sorry, but I can't find the article on their website, it's only in the paper-version, and in Swedish.

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  • Eric McBride Sep 5, 2012 Link

    That's interesting! Is that newspaper available in English? I would be interested in checking out that article.

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  • Rutger Sep 5, 2012 Link

    I read in a Swedish news paper (Specialized on Economics and bussiness) that the FRAND is more a "gentlemens agreement" than "Free cheap patents" and that the FRNAD-patent holders can retract the license form Apple too cool down the "patent-spiral". I have no idea how this will work, but since it is a well known paper with good knowledge about the market, I doubt that they are completely wrong.

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  • Eric McBride Sep 4, 2012 Link

    I think a ban on Apple products could be one of the best ways of getting them to calm down a bit. I just want to see them catch a taste of their own medicine.

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  • Dvoraak Sep 4, 2012 Link

    It's almost a shame that Apple and Google are in talks now. Most of the message board arguments against Apple are complete nonsense but so is Apple's stance. I wouldn't mind seeing Apple products get a ban placed on them, even if only temporarily. They've been incredibly short sighted from the start and that kind of error deserves a smack down.

    I think if I see one more post about the "Great artists steal" quote, my head will start spinning while pea soup spews from my mouth. It's like all the political talking heads taking something out of context and purporting it to be something completely different than what it was.

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  • CJ Brown Sep 3, 2012 Link

    It gets better - HTC plans to fight patent claims, refuses to settle with Apple (now I see why its in Google's best interest to step into this mess & end things)


    Although HTC has been in a patent dispute with Apple since 2010, not even Samsung’s defeat in the U.S. Court is making this Taiwanese Manufacturer step down from settling with Apple. According to the China Post "Chairwoman Cher Wang revealed on Tuesday that HTC is not holding talks with Apple and remains optimistic about future lawsuits", while Cher Wang also noted that Samsung’s courtroom loss is not a setback for the Android ecosystem because “every Company has good innovations” (that's probably one of the most honest quotes from a Company Executive on a long time) ...

    HTC faced its own setback for the summer of 2012 when the launch of its flagship One X Smart Phone was delayed due to an International Trade Commission (ITC) investigation (it was the 1st time Apple’s numerous patent complaints effected a rival in the U.S.) ...

    An initial ruling on the HTC vs Apple case is scheduled for November 7th, 2012


    http://www.chinapost.com.tw/taiwan/business/2012/08/29/352577/HTC-not.htm

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  • CJ Brown Sep 3, 2012 Link

    Reuters: Google and Apple are conducting secret patent settlement talks ...


    Google CEO Larry Page and Apple CEO Tim Cook have been conducting behind-the-scenes talks regarding the ongoing patent disputes between the two companies (unnamed sources according to Reuters). Page and Cook recently had conversations to discuss various matters involving intellectual property and according to Reuters‘ sources, these talks will continue ...

    Its in Google's best interest to “keep the lines of communication open at a high level” with Apple after their court victory over Samsung. It's Reuters speculating that Google & Apple's Executives could be working on a truce involving disputes over the Android operating system (so far, nobody has confirmed whether their chats might result in a broad, or a more limited settlement) ....

    The report also claims that discussions involving lower-level officials have been ongoing -

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/08/30/us-google-apple-idUSBRE87T15H20120830

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  • CJ Brown Sep 3, 2012 Link

    According to BGR Online, a larger line in the sand between Google & Apple has been drawn ... but there appears to be new negotiations going on between both Companies -

    How Google reworked Android to step around Apple’s deadly ’915 patent? One of the patents Apple asserted in its case against Samsung got attention in the tech media once tech reporters mistakenly believed that it encompassed every single type of “pinch-to-zoom” touchscreen technology. However, as The Verge explains, Apple’s ’915 patent — the so-called pinch-to-zoom patent — is actually fairly limited in scope and has reportedly already been worked around by Google with its latest Android 4.1 Jelly Bean software update.

    Most crucially for Android manufacturers, Google has designed around the ’915 patent by “allowing you to always pan around in multiple directions with one finger vs Mobile Safari in iOS generally locks you to a one-dimensional scroll when you start moving with one finger.

    Yes, the Apple v. Samsung verdict could force significant redesigns on smart phone hardware and software, but it won’t impose tyrannical restrictions on rival operating systems that will prevent them from using pinch-to-zoom (or other standard smartphone features).


    http://www.bgr.com/2012/08/30/apple-patent-analysis-google-android/


    http://www.theverge.com/2012/8/30/3279628/apple-pinch-to-zoom-patent-myth

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  • Eric McBride Sep 3, 2012 Link

    Boah...this whole thing is getting so out of control.

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  • CJ Brown Sep 1, 2012 Link

    thank you for posting Ross ... this link covered all the basis for each patent in question that Google-rola has a right to take Apple to court over ....

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  • Ross Sep 1, 2012 Link

    Here's what they're going after Apple on, Apple just opened Pandora's Box

    http://www.fosspatents.com/2012/08/these-are-seven-patents-googles.html

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  • johnathan nop Aug 30, 2012 Link

    I knew it was coming, just the matter of time for Apple. They make moneys and move on, stop being greedy and share the pots. No they want to control and even maybe starting their own wireless company and control all their own products line . But they always been suing their partners when they knew is a treat to them, that their history for them from the start, no innovation but having other companies technologies in their product lines to make it work or else it just a shell that is useless. What a bad business. For Samsung there are far more innovation than Apple and Apple is at it prime. That why Apple is heading to Japan with Sharp mobile with some for supplies and with maybe their technologies and patent it again and restated in apple terms repatent again and than sue them but sharp mobile device is only mostly in Japan. So I won't be surprise if the new iphone be waterproof or what their new technologies might be from sharp. What a company that is at it prime and can complete.

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  • Eric McBride Aug 30, 2012 Link

    @David - LOL! Ohio is in so much trouble :-D

    @ - PainfulHeart - True..but then again, if they see it as a chance to double team Google to take them down a notch, it could be interesting for them. But again, I think you're right when you say Apple will be on their own.

    @Toki - WOW! Now THAT'S something nobody on Reddit said! Thank you very much for the compliment and for posting it on your sites!

    @Ronald - I would also like to see them join in. They are still quite a powerful company that could very much aid Google in the fight.

    @CJ - Love your attitude CJ.

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  • CJ Brown Aug 30, 2012 Link

    @Ronald,

    I agree ... Sony needs to pony up against Apple, it needs to be a group effort that asks our Courts to cease these never ending patent lawsuits ... Consumers gain nothing with Court cases, Consumers gain everything when Companies are left free to be innovative & deliver Consumer Electronic Goods (if your products suck Apple? Then get back in the lab & bring out something new that impresses the masses) ...

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  • Ronald Zhu Aug 30, 2012 Link

    I'd like to see Sony join this fight, since Sony now spawns Androids ONLY (meaning it's future mobile products are 100% at stake with its current plans) and Apple originally stole their designs from Sony MP3's and their MP3 technology.

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  • Toki Nakamura Aug 30, 2012 Link

    Your article has gone viral becasue it is so well written and eloquent :D

    I'm going to feature it in my sites about iPhone vs Blackberry and Apple vs Samsung, where you can vote and voice your opinion:

    http://www.squidoo.com/IphonevsBlackberry

    http://www.squidoo.com/motorola-vs-samsung-vs-iphone-the-2012-challenge

    We can already see a war brewing.

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  • PainfulHeart Aug 29, 2012 Link

    "...might have to rely on Microsoft for help" know Microsoft....they will just laugh at Apple, Microsoft doesn't want to be dragged into this. When this trial happens, Apple will be alone.

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  • David Fox Aug 29, 2012 Link

    The Ohio State University has dibs on the rounded thing anyway: "Round on the ends and Hi in the middle, O-HI-O ..."

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  • Eric McBride Aug 29, 2012 Link

    @ CJ - LMAO! That cease and desist letter bit literally me LOL.

    @Sapper X - This man speaks the truth!

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