Samsung Versus Apple: What it means to You

The ongoing case is effectively a long drawn business battle to sell more products and in the long run, could prove to be a costly affair for you….the user.

What Apple is inadvertently trying to do is to sue anyone who makes cars because it holds the patent rights to transportation with wheels, and wheels were not invented by Apple.

As you can see from the past, Apple is good at identifying and packaging technology into a consumer product, unfortunately you can’t patent such a process but for some reason or other, the US patent office has issued these patents to Apple in due ignorance. It has been proven beyond any reasonable doubt that much of the technology that Apple so called owns in the touch screen smartphone business has been utilized and demonstrated in tech products before. The most shameless of these patents is in the look and feel of the interface which Apple has charged Samsung for copying. In the UK, this same suit was thrown out of court by a judge and the judge in turn demanded that Apple publicly admit that the Samsung Galaxy Tab is not a copy of Apple’s iOS. This in essence is probably as good as it gets since English Law has existed way before the forming of the United States of America.

This same battle is being played out in US courts. Court litigations are costly affairs, and should either side wins in one country, it can and will pursue its view of justice in other countries through the use of registered patents.

Patents are a funny thing because it has to be registered. Even though there is a world body that acts to recognize patents registered, the enforcement of individual patents is left to the patent holder. This means if you wish to haul an offending party to court, you need to ante up on the cost of the legal action.

Such actions, should it be taken and proven successful can only mean one thing, you are going to have to pay more for a consumer product. Products have to be rectified with firmware updates so that it no longer infringes on the patent, and manufacturers are loath to do so unless the market itself is big enough for them to make money from it. That is why such court battles are fought in countries where there is a substantial market share to be gained should one party wins.

This is bad news for you, since you are essentially the victim of such a fallout. You can only end up paying more for something which essentially cost less. Much worst is that certain functions might also be missing due to patent issues, neutering the device in the process. And for outright sales bans, consumers will have to import their own devices from another country should you wish to use them.

The battle for patent supremacy is really a battle for your wallet. Only you can dictate who wins in the end the moment you decide to buy from one party rather than the other. Patent hogs like Apple will simply focus more on litigation rather than innovation since it makes more sense to muscle the competition out of business.

There is always a likelihood that should Apple concede, it will start to license its patents in FRAND (fair, reasonable and non discriminatory terms). This will be a win-win situation for all but at this point, it doesn’t seem to be going this way.

ICS Roll Out By Samsung

The Galaxy Note should be getting an ICS update anytime now however if you are experiencing any update problems, the Samsung servers are probably over whelmed. I have had two separate failures to date with WiFi updates and part of the problem is certainly the servers. 

The ICS update is significant for the GN as there are several premium apps included for use with the S Pen. I figured that the 326MB update would just be for ICS but it turns out the whole suite of apps are included as well. This could explain why the Samsung update is not rolling out as smoothly. 

It takes me under 30 mins to update the GN but each time, after about 10 mins, the server starts to drop the connection and I have to restart the update all over again. The GN update I am receiving is for the Internationally released model and not ones sent out to residents in Europe or America. 

What Samsung could have done is to push the premium apps for the GN directly to their Samsung Appstore instead of packaging everything together. This way, you can get people to log into the store and download these apps separately at their convenience. 

As I understand it, Samsung wants to include the S Pen suite with the ICS update to act as a one stop download for  all phones but in order to do that, your servers should be up to mark on this. Right now, the updates are not rolling out in time for everyone because Samsung just isn’t into the Cloud computing space and will require time to get their act together. The investment called for is significant but as a products driven company, it still has some way to go to reach the level that Microsoft or Apple are at right now with servers and cloud storage. 

This weakness should be addressed before Samsung gets even more ambitious.