Not everyone was all that happy to let Apple have its day in the spotlight and leave it at that. Of course, it shouldn’t be much of a surprise that competing companies would take to Twitter to try to draw a bit of attention away from Apple and its iPhone announcements. Some worked well, some didn’t, and some were just odd, so let’s round up the most notable.
The analytics company concludes that while overall phone sales dropped slightly, smartphone sales are growing rapidly rising by 46.9% in Q3 2012.
Samsung cemented its position as the most prolific phone manufacturer selling nearly 98 million devices in the quarter.
With the Apple-Motorola Mobility FRAND patent trial set to begin Monday at 1pm, Judge Barbara Crabb responded negatively to Apple’s stated willingness to enter into a licensing agreement with Motorola Mobility for the right to use the latter’s standards-essential patents, only if it didn’t have to pay more than $1 per Apple iPhone. The judge noted her thoughts in an “Opinion and Order” entered with the court on Friday. Judge Crabb does not want to order Motorola to make an offer to Apple if the Cupertino based firm is going to use that offer as a negotiating tool, and she now “believe[s] it would be inappropriate to grant Apple’s clarified request for specific performance”. She added that if ordering Motorola to make an offer to Apple would end all of the patent litigation or extended negotiations, she would have granted Apple’s request for specific performance, but “it is now clear that specific performance would not resolve those concerns”.
Judge Crabb is not happy with Apple
Apple has indicated to a Wisconsin court that it is willing to pay Google-owned Motorola Mobility to license standard-essential wireless patents, but it will not pay more than $1 per iPhone sold.
The admission by Apple marks the first time the company has indicated it would license standard-essential patents from Motorola, according to Florian Mueller of FOSS Patents. Apple said that if the court sets a FRAND rate at or below $1, the company will take a license and start paying Motorola immediately.
But if the court sets a royalty rate higher than $1 per iPhone, Apple has signaled that it will appeal the decision and make it more difficult for Motorola and Google to collect.
In Q3 of 2012, a pretty significant milestone has been reached, according to a study by the research experts at Strategy Analytics. It is estimated that the total number of smartphone owners worldwide has surpassed the 1 billion mark for the first time ever since smartphones came to be back in 1996. In comparison, the figure stood at 0.7 billion at the end of Q3, 2011. That’s huge!
Think of it this way: one in seven people around the globe have some kind of a smartphone, be it an iPhone, an Android handset, a Symbian device, or any kind of phone worthy of being called smart. But what’s even more exciting is that the numbers are to go higher at an even more ridiculous pace, if the research is correct.
Motorola and Samsung just caught a break from the law after a few hard knocks. A Mannheim, Germany court has ruled that neither company infringes on an Apple patent covering how an OS responds to and ignores touch events. While we don’t yet know the full details, patent lawsuit guru Florian Mueller suggests that the German judge took the same point of view that thwarted Apple’s claims in the Netherlands and the UK: the particular patent was just too broad to stick. It’s a potentially important win, as a ruling of violation could have led to serious problems with keeping Android-based Motorola and Samsung devices in stores; other patents are more easily circumvented.
Motorola and Microsoft are no strangers to the patent war tango, and today marks the third injunction against the Droid maker in the German court. Judge Dr. Guntz of the Munich I regional court ruled that Motorola infringes on a Microsoft patent for “soft input panel system and method,” granting Microsoft the ability to ban sales of some Motorola devices in the country. Essentially, the patent in question covers the software required to let applications flexibly receive input from different sources, such as the touchscreen keyboard and voice input.