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And on the Samsung—Apple front…

- The Fair Trade Commission (FTC) is looking to see if multinational firms are violating Korean patent law… not that this has anything to do with the Apple verdict, of course:

The FTC also plans to look into aggressive and allegedly unfair patent lawsuits filed by some multinational firms as a way to hinder the advance of Korean businesses in their markets or to profiteer by requesting too high licensing fees.

“The reason (behind the investigation) is that multinational firms have reportedly enforced their patents in an unfair manner through discriminative royalties policies, tie-in sales and unfair conditions in licensing contracts,” the official said.

- Samsung is strengthening its partnerships with American telecom providers to develop new designs.

- DLBarch was kind enough to link to the actual jury verdict.

- The real loser in the Samsung—Apple case is you.

- Hey, the Galaxy Note II has been unleashed!

- Samsung has, in all likelihood, earned a fanboy for life by sending a very, very cool Galaxy S III to a guy in Canada (HT to Stafford). I just hope Apple didn’t patent dragons.

About the author: Just the administrator of this humble blog.

  • jkitchstk

    “The Fair Trade Commission (FTC) is looking to see if multinational firms are violating Korean patent law…

    Is it worth 40 million Won?

  • http://www.xanga.com/wangkon936 WangKon936

    Got this from the Daily Meme. There is non-Korean resentment out there…

    http://sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash3/538565_327112040717473_856731387_n.jpg

  • hardyandtiny

    The technology is probably copied but the Galaxy Note is without a doubt better than the iPhone. Apple is going to have to offer a larger screen size as soon as possible before Samsung works their way around the patent infringements.

  • YangachiBastardo

    Interestingly enough Apple is loosing market share everywhere around the world, and particularly in China.

    The current vulgata is tht this is gonna drastically change with the release of the iPhone 5.

    I’m really, really curious to see what will happen

    Apple is going to have to offer a larger screen size as soon as possible before Samsung works their way around the patent infringements

    I have fairly big fingers and my eyes are less than perfect, i find the S 3 barely workable, any iPhone would be on the other hand a complete nightmare for me

  • hardyandtiny

    Is the S3 like the iPhone size?

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    The KFTC Guidelines on abuse of intellectual property rights are something like two years old, and are based on principles which have been established in US and European competition law for over a decade. This is not something Korea Inc. cooked up this week. I have every confidence, though, that the KFTC will savor enforcement against foreign companies.

  • slim

    I’m a blackberry/windows PC user at work and an Apple desktop owner since 1989, but no kind of fanboy. Computers and phones are merely appliances to me, so I don’t have a huge dog in the fight or any emotional investment at all in this case.

    I am curious to see how Korea Inc — with its captive regulatory institutions, government agencies and media — respond to this. I’m betting the FTC move is just the beginning.

  • cm

    There were some rumors back few months I heard, that Samsung Note 2 would have the new flexible screen technology breakthrough which would make it not bendable (yet), but unbreakable. All the write up’s and first look videos doesn’t seem to mention this, so I guess Samsung decided not to put that in for the new Note. It was reported a week ago that LG which is also making the new screen was ready to ramp up the production, to ship to Apple and others.

  • YangachiBastardo

    h&t: feels significantly larger to me

  • Barreira

    >>Who Really Lost the Apple vs. Samsung Case? You Did.

    Couldn’t disagree more.

    It’s absurd to conclude that this verdict will result in net loss to consumers – I guess the $1 Billion figure is blinding a lot of people to the fact that Samsung got nailed for infringing primarily *trade dress* and *design* elements.

    … Folks, this is *NOT* critical blocking technology – These are things that Samsung and Android can change pretty quickly (= inexpensively), and without critical loss of functionality. Even Apple’s utility patents found to be infringing are non essential….

    …I mean, does anyone really think that Samsung or Android will be squeezed out of mobile comm. business (thus reducing competition) because they can’t include “pinch to zoom” or “scroll bounce back”?! (or “round corners” or NxN arrangement of icons on the home screen?!?)

    The more likely scenario is that Samsung and the rest of the Android folks will brush this off and come up with alternative UI elements and designs that will be different – and even possibly (hopefully!) better than what Apple got. This is good for consumers.

    As an aside, regarding the sorry state of the Android hardware biz (and the tough times that HTC & co. are going through), hey, that’s the price you pay for being a manufacturer dealing in commodity products — such Android handsets.

    Blame Samsung for the Android hardware woes, not Apple.

    Even if Apple disappeared today, HTC and other Taiwanese/Chinese handset suppliers would still be squeezed out – by Samsung, with its economies of scale, larger home market (with captive consumers), superior vertical integration, and fast turnaround (= greater risk taking).

    P.S. If you look at it from this angle, the ONLY reason Samsung is not kicking Apple’s butt is Apple’s distinctive design and UI (along with the software ecosystem that Apple created through its own ingenuity/effort).

    So bitching about the verdict and the $ award cause it’s based “merely” on “soft” stuff, like UI, is like asking “what did the Romans give us other than the aqueducts….”

  • YangachiBastardo

    barreira: thanks for your post, it kinda answer many questions i’ve been asking the past few days

    I’m not quite sure how reinforcing the Samsung/Apple duopoly (as your analysis seems to imply) doesn’t hurt consumers though, at least in the medium run

  • http://www.chinasmack.com/tag/funny/page/3 Jakgani
  • http://www.chinasmack.com/tag/funny/page/3 Jakgani
  • http://www.xanga.com/wangkon936 WangKon936

    YB,

    Apple is losing market share because their product life cycles are too long. People are tired of waiting for two years for larger screens, etc.

  • DLBarch

    Barreira is spot on. We’re already seeing industry commentary that the Apple verdict is a boon to competing but to-date struggling non-Android platforms. Windows, Nokia, and dear old Blackberry (sigh) have just been extended a lifeline, and all of this is good for consumer choice.

    As for the KFTC, the intersect and tension between patent law (which effectively creates a temporal monopoly over a given technology) and antitrust (which aims to bust monopoly power and promote competition) is well established, and was my favorite area back when I was in Big Law.

    In the hands of the KFTC, though, gawd knows how this new interest is going to be (ab)used. Certainly, any Korean bureaucrat uttering the line “requesting too high licensing fees” should send shivers down one’s spine.

    DLB

  • DLBarch

    BTW, I don’t want to give any of our Korean or kyopo comrades an aneurysm, but Sony’s new line-up of smartphone and tablet products is just stunning!

    No link, but check them out for yourself. Just awesome.

    DLB

  • YangachiBastardo

    WK

    You thik al these people will rush back to Apple, once new products are available ?

    PS

    I have no idea

  • iMe

    WK @14
    “Apple is losing market share because their product life cycles are too long. People are tired of waiting for two years for larger screens, etc.”

    I always thought it was their strength since one didn’t have to worry about their gadget becoming outdated in 3-6 months after purchase.

  • http://www.xanga.com/wangkon936 WangKon936

    DLB,

    Sony’s ability to spend on R&D is very much hampered because the company can’t turn a profit worth a damn. Even ZTE can spend more on R&D than Sony. I would worry about ZTE and Huawei more than Sony or Panasonic if I was Samsung or LG.

  • YangachiBastardo

    WK: we’re still a few years ahead before Western or other Asian consumers will accept a mainstream Chinese brand…if we’re talking about shutting out the domestic market entirely to foreign competition, that’s possible and even likely

  • http://www.xanga.com/wangkon936 WangKon936

    iMe and YB,

    A longer product cycle was more of a strength in the past, but competition is heating up thus, Apple needs to step up their game, not just let lawyers do all their competing for them by setting up higher barriers to entry.

    It’s not a good strategy to have slow product releases and let your customers try out competing products. Who knows how many of those customers come back? Maybe many will, but it’s terrible business strategy to give your competitors that chance.

    Samsung has proven that there are sizable markets for the following products:

    1) Smartphone with a screen between 4.3 to 4.8 inches.
    2) A “phablet” smartphone with screen size between 5 to 5.3 inches.
    3) A tablet between the sizes of 7 to 9 inches.

    If I was an Apple shareholder, I would be asking why Apple isn’t participating in any of those sizable markets?

  • http://www.xanga.com/wangkon936 WangKon936

    YB,

    The Chinese consumer product manufacturers are coming…

    http://www.economist.com/node/21559929

    http://in.reuters.com/article/2012/08/28/zte-idINL4E8JS2BK20120828

    To think that the Japanese manufacturers have a shot in this hyper competitive environment may be a little ignorant. They are having trouble with the Koreans as it is. Wait till the Chinese come aboard. It is a lot easier to take a chance on a $100 Chinese phone then it is to do so for a $15k Chinese car. Chinese consumer electronics penetration in the West will be fast if they make some good products.

  • YangachiBastardo

    WK: when your company seems to fly on an endless supply of mystique and when that mystique turns so easily into the biggest free cash flow machine the world has probably ever known, Apple mangement can easily afford to silence any shareholder bit of skepticism with a loud fuck off :)

    Speaking seriously you are right, they seem bloated, arrogant and with a scant product line…on the other hand like this every product launch is an event. The risk of diluting their brand is always behind the corner

  • http://www.xanga.com/wangkon936 WangKon936

    Apple was a company driven by the charisma and mania of Steve Jobs. He’s dead now and his magic pixie dust will only last so long after his passing. The Apple TV is the last product he had a direct hand in. I worry for the company after that product is released. Without plentiful product pipelines, companies die. Look at Kodak. Flying high for over 100 years. After film gets replaced by digital, they don’t know what to do and they die.

  • YangachiBastardo

    To think that the Japanese manufacturers have a shot in this hyper competitive environment may be a little ignorant

    Totally agree…i think the real crisis of Japan is starting now, wouldn’t be too surprised to see many of the corporate zombies finally getting the silver bullet in the next 5-10 years

    It is a lot easier to take a chance on a $100 Chinese phone then it is to do so for a $15k Chinese car

    You read my mind :) i was exactly thinking about what kind of monumental failures so far Chinese car companies have collected in the West

  • DLBarch

    My understanding is the the normal product cycle argument is less cogent where most people are locked into two-year contracts with their wireless carriers. Unless they want to upgrade to a new phone in the middle of their contract by paying full price, most smartphone users wait until their contract comes up for renewal before taking advantage of their carrier’s subsidized incentives on the latest models as a means of retaining their customers.

    I also know first hand that at Apple, the emphasis is on hitting specific product benchmarks, not on turning-and-burning new products with a shelf-life of a few months.

    As for Sony, I think its premature to rule out its turnaround. The company has so much built up brand value that I suspect there are consumers out there just ready to return to the fold given the right product line.

    BTW, Samsux and LG both know this. There is a remarkable acknowledgement by these companies that they still lack (so far) the “cool factor” that drives brand loyalty.

    I suspect that most Samsux owners would throw their products under the bus at a moment’s notice.

    DLB

  • http://www.xanga.com/wangkon936 WangKon936

    “My understanding is the the normal product cycle argument is less cogent where most people are locked into two-year contracts with their wireless carriers. ”

    DLB,

    Then why is Apple offering to buy old iPhone 4s’?

    http://arstechnica.com/apple/2012/08/apple-will-buy-back-and-recycle-your-iphone-4s/

    “As for Sony, I think its premature to rule out its turnaround.”

    Well, then, would you recommend the stock? I certainly wouldn’t. If I could buy ZTE, Huawei or Haier stock I would.

    “I suspect that most Samsux owners would throw their products under the bus at a moment’s notice.”

    Everyone would throw away their products at a moment’s notice if they had something a lot cheaper and better in front of them. Brand loyalty is not a given. It’s important, but not a god given right. It can erode, dilute and depreciate. Yes, even for Apple. I use to own a 3Gs, but gave it to a friend and got the Galaxy SII late last year. I honestly don’t care what name is on my phone. I got tired of reading text from a 3.5 inch screen.

  • DLBarch

    Wow. If you don’t appreciate the importance (and billions of dollars spent on) brand loyalty to companies like Apple and Samsung, then there’s nothing more I can say to change your mind.

    That is just jaw-droppingly incredible.

    DLB

  • http://www.xanga.com/wangkon936 WangKon936

    … not saying that. I’m saying that it’s not as important as you think it is. Just ask GM… or Toyota.

  • http://www.xanga.com/wangkon936 WangKon936

    DLB,

    Remember Zenith, RCA, Commodore, Atari? Yeah, I barely do too. Your brand is only as good as your product line. Shit*y products and your brand eventually become shit*y too. That’s all I’m saying. People don’t worship Apple because it’s got a great brand. Where were all these supposed worshipers in 1996 when Apple was at the precipice?

    Apple has worshipers because their products are worship worthy that’s it. When the rain god gives no more rain the people go elsewhere. That’s how the Mayan civilization collapsed.

  • http://www.xanga.com/wangkon936 WangKon936

    …. oh, and Kodak still has a great brand. Not sure how much good it’s doing them now since they couldn’t change their PRODUCTS to match shifting CUSTOMER (and technological) SENTIMENT.

  • Q

    Things get more interesting. The jury foreman ”
    has a patent in his own name for a device which could be used in smart phones and tablets.”

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2194916/Apple-vs-Samsung-Verdict-1-billion-triumph-questioned-revealed-jury-holds-smartphone-patents.html

  • cm

    To me, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with Apple’s product life cycle. I think the true problem for Apple is that they only have one iPhone and one iPad – they lack product lines that will appeal to broad range of consumers. Some consumers want big screens. Some consumers don’t care about internet connection, they only want to talk on it. And if you notice, iPhone’s sell well in developed countries, but do poorly in developing countries. Why? Because they are priced out of the league for most people around the world.

    Then Apple could say, why should we broaden our range of products when we’re THE most profitable company in the world? The answer to that is market share, by using better brand name value and denying market share to companies like Samsung, Apple could theoretically do even better by eliminating the competition.

    And I disagree with DLbarch that Samsux is uncool. It used to be uncool noname value brand, but I don’t think it’s no longer the case, especially after this highly publicized war with Apple. Now everyone knows Samsux supplies components to Apple. I would say brand name recognition for Samsux and other Korean companies like LG have gone exponentially the last several years, thanks to Apple.

  • http://gypsyscholarship.blogspot.com/ jefferyhodges

    Q, that is an interesting article, but it’s a bit sensationalized. One of the experts cited in the article even acknowledges that the jury foreman’s “patent was not directly related to the issues at hand.” The patent dates from 2002, and the technology it describes doesn’t appear to have been used by either Apple or Samsung, or so the article implies.

    I’ll wait for more details on this before calling bias.

    Jeffery Hodges

    * * *

  • DLBarch

    WK @ 30,

    I think there is a common and understandable error in confusing brand-name recognition with brand loyalty. The two are not the same, and most business types know this. I will bet further that no one at Samsux agrees with you. But vive la difference.

    CM @ 33,

    I am absolutely willing to concede that Samsux has a good brand reputation in terms of quality. I do not begrudge them this. Whether the brand has yet achieved iconic “cool” status, however, I still have my doubts.

    Interestingly, the 2012 Global Business Reputation Index is out and there is not a single Korean company listed (ya gotta scroll down to get to the full list):

    http://landor.com/#!/talk/articles-publications/articles/2012-global-corporate-reputation-index-citizenship-deficits-limit-reputations/

    I am genuinely surprised. I would not put Samsux on this list (at some point one simply cannot ignore all the corporate corruption), but surely LG and/or Hyundai belong SOMEWHERE among the Top 25.

    And what’s the deal with all those Japanese companies? Honda and Canon, OK. Sony? Maybe. But Toshiba? Sharp?

    C’mon!
    DLB

  • http://www.xanga.com/wangkon936 WangKon936

    Well, I still continue to believe that brand loyalty is overrated (that’s different from unimportant). You’re only as good as your next blockbuster product. At the very least this attitude keeps companies on their toes and away from relying too much on intangible attributes. I believe the intangibles only work when they are married with solid fundamentals.

    For me, a kink in Apple’s armor was visible when it took them freak’in 18 months from the introduction of the iPhone 4 to the 4s. 18 months for a faster processor and Siri (incidentally, Apple took Siri out as a stand alone app from iTunes the minute the 4s came out). People were pissed (not just Hitler):

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lxn6Ag0mmhs

    Apple is only gonna move as fast as it’s competitors make it. They are getting fat and happy at the top.

  • cm

    DLB, I think this ranking of 100 best brand rankings is much more accurate than a poll of world citizens ranking their own country’s company reputations.

    100 best global brands ranking 2011, and Samsung is 17th, which is pretty good.

    http://www.interbrand.com/en/best-global-brands/best-global-brands-2008/best-global-brands-2011.aspx

  • http://gypsyscholarship.blogspot.com/ jefferyhodges

    WK, in writing “For me, a kink in Apple’s armor,” I think you meant a “chink” . . . unless you were referring mail armor.

    Jeffery Hodges

    * * *

  • Q

    Professor James Allworth at Harvard Business Reviews wrote “Who Cares If Samsung Copied Apple?”:

    the best defense against copying isn’t lawsuits, but rather, to innovate at such a rate that your competition can’t copy you fast enough.

    Bingo!

  • DLBarch

    CM @ 37,

    You are absolutely right. I stand corrected! That list certainly seems more encompassing.

    DLB

  • DLBarch

    @39,

    For the record, I’m familiar with James Allworth’s writings, but he is not a professor and does not have a Ph.D.

    He is, however, a fellow at Harvard and has an MBA, whatever that’s worth.

    His views on the unimportance of patents are pure nonsense.

    DLB

  • http://www.xanga.com/wangkon936 WangKon936

    Jeffery,

    “Chink” has certain undertones in today’s PC culture I want to avoid.

  • Q

    DLB wrote:

    For the record, I’m familiar with James Allworth’s writings, but he is not a professor and does not have a Ph.D.

    Thank you for the correction. It is interesting he has worked with Apple too:

    He has worked as a Fellow at the Forum for Growth and Innovation at Harvard Business School, at Apple, and Booz & Company.

  • cm

    How to get around Apple’s patent for pinch and zoom? Use the “Circle to zoom”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=48auZ6kPooQ

    Yonhap reports that this was patented by the Korean who uploaded the video, in 2009. The advantage of this is it doesn’t need multi touch screen. I’m presuming he can be turn into a multi millionaire if his patent is bought out by Samsung or others.

    http://news.hankooki.com/lpage/economy/201208/h20120831062900111720.htm

  • http://gypsyscholarship.blogspot.com/ jefferyhodges

    “Yonhap reports that this was patented by the Korean . . .”

    The Korean is a man of many talents!

    Jeffery Hodges

    * * *

  • tatertot

    WangKon936,

    The expression doesn’t really make any sense written with “kink.” Don’t change the expression, fully removing any meaning from it, just because some idiots don’t know what a chink is. Personally, if I was wearing armor and I had the option of somebody attacking a kink or a chink in it, I’d want them to go for the kink.

  • Q

    Bloomberg reports ‘Apple loses patent suit against Samsung in Japan’:

    “It’s hard to believe the products belong to the range of technologies of the claimant,” Shoji said in dismissing Apple’s case.

  • Arghaeri

    “Chink” has certain undertones in today’s PC culture I want to avoid.

    Seriously? You think a correct word used correctly in the right context in a well established phrase would be interpreted as a chinese person in the armor.

  • http://gypsyscholarship.blogspot.com/ jefferyhodges

    He prefers that kinky chain mail . . . or its homo-nym. Laugh fast — kinky chain mail will soon be anti-PC!

    Jeffery Hodges

    * * *

  • Q

    Vivek Wadhwa at Washington Post wrote Why Apple needs to lose the Samsung appeal.

  • Q

    Richard Blackden at The Telegraph wrote Keep rival Samsung sweet, Apple told:

    “Apple needs strong suppliers,” said Ben Rogoff, who manages $1.3bn (£882m) in technology funds at Polar Capital in London. “Apple needs to be careful what it wishes for. If this relationship deteriorated, you’d see Apple looking to diversify its supplier base, but that’s hard to do.”

  • palladin9479

    Numerous product offerings are not in Apple’s business strategy. Their basic design philosophy is freedom from choice, meaning the least amount of stress is involved for the user. It’s been demonstrated that multiple unfamiliar choices make people feel nervous and hesitant, the fear of making a wrong decision can make a customer not chose your product. This is why Apple employes graphics artists and media folks to design their products interface rather then using engineers to do it.

    So no, don’t expect multiple Apple products within the same market. At most you’ll get an iPad-mini for the size between a tablet and a smartphone.

    They’ll sue Samsung when they make one too…