What Apple’s Anti-Android Lawsuits Mean to Me

I love Apple. I do. I had a first generation iPhone until the iPhone 4 was released, and I used it for 2 solid years before getting my Samsung Galaxy Note. I own a Macbook Pro, and I have an iPad from work. On top of that, I fully intend to get a new 27-inch iMac once the new models are released later this year.

I’m not a fanboy; I just think Apple makes hellaciously high-quality electronics.

But here’s the thing: I don’t think Apple can do no wrong. They can. In fact, they’re doing a lot of wrong with their current batch of anti-Android lawsuits.

I’d go so far to say that right now, Apple Corporation is looking an awful lot like a huge bag of dicks because of their constant lawsuits against Android phones and tablets.

Last year, when I read about Apple filing for injunctions against Android devices because of alleged patent infringements, I thought it was silly. But they were shot down, and people were still able to buy whatever tablets and phones they wanted.

This year, however, Judge Lucy Koh decided that Apple’s accusations were not baseless. She allowed injunctions to be placed on the Galaxy Nexus and the Galaxy Tab 10.1, forbidding their sales in the United States based on software patent infringement. And do you know what that patent infringement was?

Unified search. Because you could a single search query that brought results from both the internet and the phone’s internal storage.

It’s ridiculous. When alleged patent infringements like multitouch gestures, swipe-to-unlock, and other such base functionalties were rejected, unified search is what gets devices pulled from the shelves?

Seriously?

Google’s working on a fix to be patched into Android, sure, but the whole thing just reeks of a bag of dicks to me.

Like I said, I’m no fanboy. Not for Android and not for Apple, at least.

I’m a fanboy for the end-user. For the consumers. I’m a fanboy for us. 

All Apple is doing with these lawsuits is hurting you and me. If these kinds of lawsuits stick, we can’t go out and decide what phone we want.

The market will be split even further than it is now. The United States will have subpar phones and tablets compared the rest of the world–more so than we already do. The US is already lagging behind in many respects, and if we want the actual gadgets (and not the neutered domestic ones), we’ll have to pay the exorbitant, unsubsidized prices for unlocked international versions.

Because Apple is litigating willy-nilly, and they’re not helping anyone. They’re just being mean. They’re just limiting consumer choices. They’re just throwing their weight around, and I don’t like it.

I don’t like it one bit.

I try to live my life with a simple goal: don’t be an asshole. And unfortunately, that’s the exact opposite of what Apple is doing right now.

They have market-share and brand identity. People know who Apple is now more than they ever have. The iPhone changed the way people use technology and see the world. So there’s no need to act like this.

This type of litigation does nothing but limit consumers.

I’m not going to #boycottApple or anything like that. And I don’t think you should, either. That defeats the purpose. That plays into what they’re doing–limiting the competition. And that’s not good for anybody. If you want an iPhone or iPad, you should be able to go and buy one. If you want a Galaxy Nexus, you should be able to get that, too.

The choice is what’s important. And that’s what Apple is trying to take away.

So what I ask you to do, folks, is research. Please. Look at the available technology before you make a decision on what to buy. Check out the Samsung Galaxy Note or the S3. See the Google Nexus 7. Check out Windows 8. Read about the new iPad and the upcoming iPhone 5. Go demo a Retina Macbook.

Then make your decision. For yourself.

Don’t let a company think they can bully you into thinking that their product is the only one for you.

Don’t let a company tell you there aren’t choices. Because there are. There are hundreds of them. Thousands of them. Don’t let a singe corporation–be it Apple, Samsung, Google, or anyone else–tell you there aren’t.

Comments

  1. Does seem pretty silly. Patent law is something else. This actually reminds me of the Microsoft anti-trust lawsuit a decade ago, only the exact opposite.

    • Which amazes me that Judge Koh is actually going for this. I don’t think it’s ever possible for Apple to have the monopoly (or even iOS having greater % market-share over Android), but the fact that they have only a single phone with a few versions that has reached that much proliferation might as well be the same thing.

      I mean, people STILL equate Windows and Microsoft with the word “computer,” and my computer teacher in college told us to get on the internet by “clicking twice on the big, blue E.”

  2. Richard

    Check out #boycottapple on Google+, there’s tons of things going on in that stream. Some posts are ignorant fanboys, sure, but there’s some great information on Patent law reform, patent trolling, and just some hilarious memes.

    • I’m all for the patent-law reform stuff I’ve seen. I’m definitely cool with people protecting their property, but Apple’s taking it a bit far with these lawsuits. I’d say the same thing if Google started doing the same thing based on the swipe-down notification window or something similar, though.

  3. If we could patent general ideas, the patent for everything would have been taken two hundred years ago by science fiction and fantasy writers. It’s a particular way of doing something that should be patentable because that’s the aspect that someone put time and intellect into. Just thinking “what if I could search two things at once?” is not even remotely patent-worthy. Apple’s goal isn’t protecting patents, but to manipulate the legal system for a market advantage. It’s not just an Apple problem (not to say they aren’t a great example and shouldn’t be made an example of).

    • And that’s where my problem is, yep. I love Apple. I do. But this kind of manipulation doesn’t help them in the long run because it hurts consumers. It limits consumers into thinking that new ideas aren’t worth striving for, that we should be happy with what’s already been tried and true.

      And that bothers me. I mean, I love the idea of Google Glass. LOVE IT. I’ll gladly buy one if my wife and I have the money for it upon release. But if Apple makes it’s iEye (tee hee) and rips Google’s idea off…will I be mad? Not really. I’d be mad if Google sued them for infringing on their patent of “looking up to check the weather.” I mean, think about that for a second. How ridiculous is that?