“Apple and Palm kicked a lot of dirt at each other last week — acting Apple CEO Tim Cook flatly told analysts that ‘We will not stand for people ripping off our IP’ when asked specifically about competition like the Palm Pre, and Palm responded with a similarly-explicit ‘We have the tools necessary to defend ourselves.’ At issue, of course, is that the Pre employs a multitouch screen and gestures almost exactly like those made famous on the iPhone — and if you’ll recall, Steve Jobs introduced multitouch on the iPhone with a slide reading ‘Patented!’ To top it all off, the past few days have seen a number of media outlets proclaim that Apple’s been awarded a ‘multitouch patent’ without so much as a shred of analysis, instead hyping up a supposed future conflict,” Nilay Patel reports for Engadget. “That’s just not how we play it, so we enlisted Mathew Gavronski, a patent attorney in the Chicago office of Michael Best & Friedrich, to help us clear up some of the confusion and misinformation that’s out there.”
“You’ve got two large companies, each loaded up with tons of patents and pending patents, only some of which we’ve touched on here, and plenty of reasons to fight this one out: not only is Apple historically protective of its IP, it’s got the massively popular iPhone to defend, while Palm’s more or less staking its survival on the success of the Pre,” Patel writes.
MacDailyNews Take: “Two large companies?” Really? It’s time for us to “clear up some confusion and misinformation,” too. Apple has 32,000 employees worldwide. Apple’s current market cap is $83 billion, the company is debt-free and has $28.145 billion, with a “b,” in cash on-hand. Palm’s has 1,050 total employees; including some notable Apple castoffs who seemingly couldn’t cut it in Cupertino. Palm’s current market cap is $827.6 million, the company has $396 million in debt, and $224 million in cash on-hand. It relies on cash infusions from Elevation Partners to survive. To equate the two companies in terms of size (or pretty much anything else) is patently ridiculous.
Patel continues, “We doubt this will all settle quietly in the night. More likely it’s going to come down to whoever decides to blink first — and unless Palm decides to go out in a blaze of glory, files a declaratory judgment action and tries to preemptively invalidate Apple’s patents, we’d say the first shot’s going to come from Cupertino.”
Full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: “Pre” must be short for “prevarication.” The more we see and hear of Palm’s wannabe iPhone, the more we’re convinced that it’s nothing more that takeover bait. Perhaps they think they can entice the likes of Microsoft’s Ballmer or some other company’s similarly out-to-lunch CEO? The fact is that Palm simply does not have the resources with which to effectively compete with Apple, much less create another mobile platform (especially one that is superfluous) or even effectively bring their Prevarication to market. We’re not even sure that Palm will have enough cash left to pay their lawyers if and when the lawsuits begin.