Posts with tag legal

Some good news and some bad news

Compromise is at the core of today’s Apple / Samsung patent decision


In the never ending patent battle between Apple and Samsung, the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has handed down some good news and some bad news for both sides. According to the folks in high places, Samsung is indeed guilty of infringing certain, specific design patents in a previous (remember, this case is a couple of years old, now) version of Apple’s iPhone – a win for Apple. However, those same folks also decreed that Samsung wasn’t wholly copying the overall look and feel of the iPhone, instead creating an overwhelmingly original design.

This means exactly what it sounds like – Samsung will still owe Apple some money for those infringing design patents, but it’ll owe less – and likely considerably less – than before. Truthfully, this seems like a decent compromise. Apple’s claim that Samsung copied the overall look and feel of the iPhone years ago, an accusation which many claimed ridiculous. Many opponents to Apple’s accusation claim that Apple doesn’t own the concept of a rounded rectangle with a big screen in the middle of it, and today’s decision validates those doubts.

Source: The Verge

The fallout continues

Microsoft changes policies following Outlook snooping aftermath


The other day we noted that there appears to be a large amount of fallout following the revelation that Microsoft snooped on a users’ Hotmail account in order to confirm allegations that a company employee leaked confidential trade secrets. While the case itself is undoubtably a win for Microsoft, the thought of Microsoft snooping through their users’ Hotmail accounts on the drop of a hat has raised new questions surrounding what rights we have to privacy online.

Microsoft has finally responded the situation, and it’s done so in a big way. Company representative John Frank, VP and deputy general counsel, admits that “even we should not conduct a search of our own email and other customer services unless the circumstances would justify a court order, if one were available,” and as a result the company will now adhere to strict set of guidelines before invading a user’s privacy and checking their inboxes and data (thank goodness).

A new legal team entirely separate from the internal investigations team will be instituted that will determine whether any case could justify a court order. If the team determines that a court order would be allowed, the company will then be allowed to continue to browse throw the users’ data.

This will also result in a new “bi-annual transparency report” that will detail the number of searches conducted since the last report. Any current investigations have been stopped immediately barring approval from Microsoft’s new legal team to assure that a situation like this doesn’t happen again.

Check after the break to read Microsoft’s full statement on the matter.

Source: The Verge

Well above estimates

Apple iBookstore owns about 20% of the eBooks market

IBooks_logoIn court today, Apple was forced to reveal that their iBookstore portal, which allows customers to purchase eBooks and load them on their iOS device for easy reading, currently owns about 20% market share of the entire eBooks market, which is currently overwhelmingly dominated by Amazon and their Kindle eBooks store.

When asked directly by the court about the iBookstore’s performance, who also claimed that Apple’s iBookstore was somewhat of a “failure”, Apple executive Keith Moerer also revealed that “I disagree. E-book sales grew 100% last year at the iBookstore and it had over 100 million customers.”

The government is currently investigating as to whether or not Apple conspired to fix eBook prices to unfairly harm both the competition as well as consumers.

Via: MacRumors
Source: PublishersWeekly