The presiding judge in the Motorola v. Apple case in Illionois, Richard Posner, has just handed down an order dismissing all claims of both parties in the case, just as it was set to go to trial on Monday. Posner's preliminary order (he'll be writing a full decision soon, which I can't wait to read) basically says neither party was able to show that the infringement of patents by the other resulted in the production of evidence that said infringement actually caused them any harm.
Update: It should come as no surprise, but Samsung has responded to Apple's attack on the Galaxy S III, saying it will "demonstrate to the court that the Galaxy S III is innovative and distinctive."
Apple and Samsung's ongoing litigation in California federal court has become something of a three-ring circus. Back in December, the presiding judge denied Apple's request for a preliminary injunction against a wide variety of Samsung products.
Apple has filed a new complaint with the ITC against HTC over the same data-tapping patent that caused a substantial disruption of HTC's supply line into the United States, and resulted in delayed or stifled launches for a number of phones.
After removing the multi-option dialogue that appeared upon pressing a phone number in an email or webpage from its devices, HTC proclaimed it was clear of Apple's patent on data-tapping techniques.
What an interesting turn of events - Oracle just sued a notorious patent troll Lodsys, seeking invalidation of four of Lodsys' patents. In fact, these are all the patents Lodsys owns - if Oracle wins, Lodsys will have nothing to threaten innocent developers with.
If you haven't been following the Lodsys drama for the past year+, let me step back for a brief history lesson. Lodsys LLC, a Texas patent troll shell corporation, has been harassing various developers since early 2011, including many with Android apps in the Play Store.
We're hearing via The Verge that Judge William Alsup has just handed down his decision on the copyrightability of Oracle's 37 Java API's, asserted by Oracle as having been infringed by Google in the Android operating system. This is probably the most important issue of the entire case. While a jury decided that Google did infringe Oracle's APIs as asserted by Oracle, that decision hinged on the assumption that the APIs were in fact copyrightable in the way Oracle had insisted they were.
Update: We've received an official statement from an HTC spokesperson on the situation with US Customs, and it basically confirms what was said to the Taiwanese stock exchange. Here it is:
“Each imported HTC model must be reviewed by Customs and will be released once Customs officials have completed the inspection. Some models have gone through inspection and been released to our carrier customers. We don't have the status of each specific device model at this time, but we are working closely with Customs.
In a somewhat unexpected turn of events, it seems that at least one customer ordering an HTC Amaze 4G from T-Mobile.com has been alerted that shipments of the device have been delayed "due to an unforeseen issue with receiving the product from the manufacturer." It looks like T-Mobile is sending out emails to customers informing them that they have no "estimate as to when the product will be available," and suggesting that customers explore other options in the meantime.
According to an exclusion order issued by the ITC, some of Motorola Mobility's smartphone devices are in violation of four claims in a Microsoft patent related to scheduling meetings in a calendar. The specifics really aren't important - basically, the ITC found that Motorola infringed a Microsoft patent related to mobile software for creating and sending meeting invitations.
Motorola and Google had argued that an exclusionary order banning the import of offending Motorola devices wasn't in the public interest, but the judge didn't buy it.
You've probably already read headlines in the last hour or two proclaiming that Google has "lost" its copyright case against Oracle, and in the strictest sense of the word, it has. Google lost on a number of counts, including the most important one, question one in the jury instructions. It also lost on a count involving nine lines of code that have long-since been removed from Android.
The first question, though, asked the jurors whether Google's use of 37 Java API packages, taken as a group, constituted an infringement of Oracle's copyrighted works.
The Galaxy S III is... well... it's ugly. There's really no other way to put it. But why? Why is it ugly? I don't mean aesthetically, why is it ugly, I mean, "How did something like this ever make it out of Samsung's design studio?" I'll tell you how, it was never in the design studio. This phone design was born down the hall, in a room where the door sign reads "Samsung Legal."
It was designed by lawyers.