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back to article Android engineer: We DIDN'T copy Apple OR follow Samsung's orders

Samsung brought in heavyweight champion Google to fight in its corner in its latest patent bout with Apple in the US on Friday. In the latest instalment of the ongoing patent wars, current veep of engineering for Android, Hiroshi Lockheimer, testified that Android was all Google's idea. Much as Apple engineers did in their …

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Isn't the WSJ a Murdoch mouthpiece these days?

If so, we could just ask them what voicemails the Android team were leaving.

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Anonymous Coward

Oh god really? Are we still doing this one? Move on man!

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Well, the court case is still ongoing.

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Bullies

That is Apple these days.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Bullies

These days?! They've been trying to bully people and organisations since the 70s at least (Apple Corp vs Apple Inc is a perfect example and started in 1971)

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Apple make nothing that I want

Though I bet they don't believe me and I bet they think it's someone else's fault in any case.

If hubris had mass One Infinite Loop (or whatever their address is) would contain a black hole.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Bullies

When anybody mentions Apple I often think of the Evil Queen from Snow White.

http://www.theguardian.com/film/gallery/2009/aug/28/threatening-food-film

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Apple Corp vs Apple Inc

Started in 1971? Starting lawsuits a half decade before a company is founded is an aggressive strategy, I agree!

Keep it mind it was Apple Corp (i.e. Beatles) who sued Apple, not the other way around. Claiming the name Apple in all markets when they were only a record label is as bad as the abuses over rounded corners.

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Re: Apple Corp vs Apple Inc

Apple corp did not claim the Apple name in all markets. They had an agreement with Jobsian Apple that as long as they stayed out if the music biz they were fine. Then Jobsian Apple entered the music biz where Apple corp were clearly already established.

Apple corp sued Jobsian Apple because they were trying to use the same name in the same industry which is perfectly rational - nothing at all like the rounded corners BS.

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Re: Apple Corp vs Apple Inc

The lawsuit started in the early 80s, and they claimed a trademark on the Apple name extending to anything in the "entertainment" realm, which they figured included home computers. Apple eventually settled and paid them $80K to go away.

Then in the late 80s they came back at Apple because people were making MIDI boards for Apple computers, and they did another settlement, which this time expressly forbid Apple from entering into the market for physical music media.

Then after the iPod/iTunes came out they went after Apple a third time, and even though Apple offered them $1 million to settle they took Apple to court, but they lost and got nothing - because the judge ruled that digital files are not PHYSICAL music media.

Presumably at some point after that they buried the hatchet for good and Beatles music finally become available on iTunes. Maybe Apple paid them off to make that happen or maybe they (well Michael Jackson, since he owned the Beatles music by that time) decided fighting Apple and staying off iTunes was costing money in the modern digital world.

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Good Grief!!!

What on earth is physical musical media?

A vynil record only make a noise when you drop it. It needs electronic circuitry of fabulous sophistication to get it to produce music.

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Re: Good Grief!!!

"A vynil record only make a noise when you drop it. It needs electronic circuitry of fabulous sophistication to get it to produce music."

Technically not. 33/45 RPM vinyl records are, from a physical point of view, much the same technology as a gramophone which could be operated by a hand crank and contains no electronics at all.

I don't believe such a thing exists, but there's no reason you couldn't build an entirely mechanical gramophone type device for playing 33/45 RPM LPs and Singles.

With sufficient engineering, a clockwork type mechanism could be constructed allowing it to be wound up and play at the correct RPM.

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WTF?

Re: Good Grief!!! @ I. Aproveofitspendingonspecificprojects

Electronics? None needed at all.

Something to stick through the hole in the middle so the record can be spun (wood dowel, with a point on the bottom end, for example), a cone of paper or thin card, and a needle stuck through the narrow end of the cone.

Stick needle on record, and spin = Noise/Music

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Re: Apple Corp vs Apple Inc

"Claiming the name Apple in all markets..."

http://www.telepolis.pl/wiadomosci/apple-uaktywnia-sie-w-polsce-chce-uniewaznienia-znaku-a-pl,2,3,26273.html

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Re: Good Grief!!! @ I. Aproveofitspendingonspecificprojects

Physical media doesn't mean "no electronics", it means it isn't bits. Apple was smart to insure the agreement went that way, and Apple Corp apparently didn't have people looking far enough ahead to realize that physical media would largely disappear within two decades of that agreement.

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Re: Good Grief!!! @ I. Aproveofitspendingonspecificprojects

"didn't have people looking far enough ahead to realize "

Prediction is really hard, especially when we are talking about the future.

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Over $1billion Lost profits? I call bull...

You can wipe off any 'profits' they expected to get from my Android purchases, I would not have purchased iDevices instead, it would have been a pure linux device instead (before buying my first android phone there was a linux based phone I almost brought) or at worst a windows device...

I expect that equates to over £1000 they would claim in lost profit from my android purchases...

(in actual fact I expect Apple products would have been more expensive and had higher profit margins)

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WTF?

Apple seems to be overstating their case. First, Apple has basically eschewed the low end market until their recent half-heated attempts with the 5C, which still isn't that cheap if you buy it unsubsidized. That's a big chunk of money to leave to Android, WinPhone and the like.

Less significantly, there are some, like me, who can't stand the whole iTunes infrastructure. I realize I'm in the minority here, but walled gardens why I will never spend money on an iDevice, nor an Amazon phone, or any other device that tries to lock me to down to any given "ecosystem".

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Yeah, I was looking for a entry level phone recently to replace an aging iPhone 3GS. Given a range of decent Android and Windows Phone devices at the 100 - 150€ range, why would I pay an extra 400€ for an iPhone 5c?

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You can wipe off any 'profits' they expected to get from my Android purchases, I would not have purchased iDevices instead, it would have been a pure linux device instead

Not even that, Apple hasn't sued other Android vendors, they're just fixated on Samsung because it happens to have been successful. So you'd probably have bought an Android device from someone else who hasn't been sued by Apple, including Google itself which has of course shifted a lot of self-branded hardware.

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You're not the only itunes hater out there. While there's still a degree of lock in with android apps, at least I can get my music, movies et al from wherever I please. Plus I can drag and drop any media files I want without having to wait for conversion or any ither itunes sync bs.

Obviously there are enough people that do like it or tolerate it enough to use ithings, but you're not alone.

Choice is a good thing. This way everyone gets what they want.

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Hardly a minority. Those who are technologically literate are less likely* to buy an idevice at all, and those who are technologically illiterate but not rich won't buy one either.

*Note I said LESS likely, that's not an insult to those who are technologically literate and have made the decision to accept the idevice's limitations in return for 'just works'

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I'm sorry

But you're not allowed in an Apple/Android thread because you're entirely too reasonable and level headed when you're going around making statements like this:

*Note I said LESS likely, that's not an insult to those who are technologically literate and have made the decision to accept the idevice's limitations in return for 'just works'

Count me among the technologically literate who prefer "just works" to something I can tweak to death. I have a Linux desktop PC if I feel the urge to tweak. I can understand those who feel differently, or who chafe under the restraints (real or imagined) of the iTunes walled garden, but I think it is ridiculous that people feel the need to fling insults at those who choose differently.

I guess some people are so narrow minded they can't accept that others can be as smart or smarter than they are but arrive at a different choice than they did.

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I have a friend who won't convert because he says the Android music system isn't as seamless as the Apple one. Is it possible to keep all iTunes purchases and have all devices synced without an iPhone? Scope this question as broadly as you like :)

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@ cap'n

"Not even that, Apple hasn't sued other Android vendors, they're just fixated on Samsung because it happens to have been successful. So you'd probably have bought an Android device from someone else who hasn't been sued by Apple, including Google itself which has of course shifted a lot of self-branded hardware."

Although I would say you’re on the money about Apple being focused on Samsung, it has sued other Android mobile phone manufacturers. Off the top of my head, Motorola and HTC (those might be the only ones though) – in the case of the latter, Google allowed it to use patents that it had recently bought in its legal battles against Apple (it might have been in a case HTC brought against Apple, I can’t recall), which garnered even more media attention.

Pretty sure that one of the HTC lawsuits was over the Nexus One but am going from memory. So although it hasn’t sued Google, it has sued over Google-branded products.

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Android music

"The" Android music system includes Pandora, Spotify and others as well as Google Play Music and mp3 files. If you want to move to GPM from Itunes then you can use their sync tool on your desktop to upload your itunes library and mp3 files into the Google cloud (with the matching service it won't be a big deal). You can pin music to a device, share playlists across devices and the web, download all your purchased/uploaded music. Everything is available everywhere and it's really easy to use. You can buy a track on your phone and instantly listen on your tablet, which is as seamless as you can expect.

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Re: I'm sorry

"Count me among the technologically literate who prefer "just works" to something I can tweak to death. I have a Linux desktop PC if I feel the urge to tweak"

I don't think you can regard yourself as technologically literate if you still have the naive belief that your Apple phone "just works", whilst others don't. I recommend you actually try other phone OS's, they're quite mature now dontcha know. I can make phone calls, email, and even run apps without banging my Android against the wall or rubbing it in the right way.

Sure some people have issues/bugs, but search the interweb and you'll find the same for IOS users, the reason being that the OS's are coded by us human, and humans are fallible.

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In the words of mandy Rice-Davies

Well he would, wouldn't he?

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Re: In the words of mandy Rice-Davies

Same applies to Apple witnesses of course....

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Interesting Point I Suppose

How has Samsung EVER been held responsible for the "slide to unlock patent"? I mean, everyone knows it isn't a valid patent, but nothing Samsung does has anything to do with the unlock functions of Android.

If I was going to sell cars and I called up GM to buy some engines and it turned out Ford had a patent on the engine, that isn't my fault.

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Re: Interesting Point I Suppose

In 2010 Samsung created an internal document that basically said, we've tried working around slide to unlock, but honestly? Apple does it better so we'll go with that.

Pretty damning evidence.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Interesting Point I Suppose

All it means is that slide to unlock is obvious. Patents are not supposed to be granted for the obvious.

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Re: Interesting Point I Suppose

It may be pretty damning evidence but it is also quite probably irrelevant.

Take a look at the underside of virtually every laptop and there is a slide to unlock release on the battery so aiui this is an example of prior art.

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Re: this is an example of prior art

... until you add the magic phrase "on a mobile device", then it's totally different and original.

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Re: this is an example of prior art

You mean Laptops with internal batteries so they can be used in a mobile fashion ie not tied to a desk in an office environment aren't mobile?

Again aiui new applications of a prior used idea aren't generally considered original, unique and patentable otherwise every time someone put a zip on a newly designed item of clothing for example they could sue anyone who used a zip at a later date, clearly nonsense.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Interesting Point I Suppose

Yea, it took 400 phd's and a trillion dollar research budget to develop the idea of the slide to unlock. I know 3 year olds who are at least that creative. Shame on the US patent system for letting that simple stupid idea become a patent.

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Re: this is an example of prior art

Like my old Sony Walkman from the eighties that has a slide to lock/unlock. :)

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Interesting Point I Suppose

The Neonode N1 used slide to unlock - yes, they patented it before apple - yes, samsung legal (after research on the patent) licensed it from Neonode - the fact that Neonode never sued Apple has nothing to do with it.

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Re: Interesting Point I Suppose

I had a casette player with a mechanical slide to lock, so you didn't accidentally hit rewind in your pocket.

In the future I had the same thing on a CD player, slide to lock so I couldn't skip tracks accidentally.

When I bought my first MP3 player it had a digital slide to lock, swipe your finger over it, light turned red and you couldn't accidently skip tracks etc... This one didn't work too well though, had to slide several times at varying speeds to get it to work. I can't remember who made the mp3. the casette was JVC can't remember who made the CD player either. (possibly JVC again)

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Re: this is an example of prior art

My Palm had "Slide to unlock" before Apple patented it. THAT is prior art!

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What a load of bollocks.

Big, hairy, elephants bollocks.

Apple, I have NEVER bought any of your products. I probably NEVER will. You have NEVER lost any money to Samsung because of me.

The only gesture I want to do towards an Apple product is raise my middle finger.

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careful... they've probably patented that under "gestures:mobile device, subcatagory - human v1.0, proviso:emoji"

could lead to financial ruin

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Yes your right..

When making his caculations about lost profit, he obviously meant you...YOU COMPLETE AND UTTER F**KWIT

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Re: Yes your right..

Dear god, calm down

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Me Neither

"Apple, I have NEVER bought any of your products. I probably NEVER will. You have NEVER lost any money to Samsung because of me."

Coincidentally, Apple also NEVER lost any money to Samsung because of me. I buy only Apple. Because of Apple, now every phones sport the same clean, minimalist design. Good influence. No more flips, slides, buttons everywhere, cheap plastic feel, pressing numeric buttons for text.

Of course, Apple copied Samsung in everything. The design was stolen from Samsung when Samsung was looking the other way. The Appstore concept was stolen from Samsung when Samsung was close to hitting upon the idea. The iTunes concept that made folks pay for music was stolen from Samsung when Samsung was busy downloading music. The Apple retail concept was stolen from Samsung and now they looked identical. And the stupid software design was stolen from someone's 3-year-old. Man, I love paying more for stolen goods. It made me feel good.

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Getting back to the real problem...

Well, as long as the current patent system is left to fester, then the deepest pockets will continue to run roughshod over the little guy with new ideas. Rather than each of us simply running our pro/anti-Apple script in this thread, perhaps we should all instead focus on altering this environmental condition, which is what allows such bullying in the first place.

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"Apple wrapped up its arguments on Friday with its damages expert Christopher Vellturo. The economist said that by his analysis, the alleged infringement of the five patents in the case had cost Apple $1.07bn in lost profits and it deserved the other $1.12bn as a "reasonable royalty"."

Isn't that double counting? If Samsung hadn't "copied", assuming it has, Apple would get the $1.07bn. If Samsung licensed it, they get the $1.12bn. There's no situation in which you get both.

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"There's no situation in which you get both."

If party X defrauds party Y of $100, being forced to just giving the $100 back is no disincentive to fraud. From a legal point of view, any judgement against party X has to include not only restitution of $100 but also an additional penalty.

Having said that, Apple's figures are over the top by several orders of magnitude even IF the patents had any value. Which they don't.

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Whilst you are right that the penalty of any offence is by design more costly than doing something the right way to begin with, the punishment is the job of the court not the plaintiff. Apple are free to mention damages due to lost licencing revenue or alternatively due to lost profit if they did not intend to licence it out. They can even do some sums and claim the higher of the two figures. But if the court finds Samsung guilty then the court will take such damages into account as well as any disincentives (including any disincentive to frivolous lawsuits that seem increasingly necessary).

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Look at this and tell me that Samsung don't copy Apple...

https://www.facebook.com/SamsungIreland/photos/pb.201797643167743.-2207520000.1397486606./818409858173182/?type=3&theater

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