Chutzpah: Google wants 2.25% of every iPhone sale

Google wants 2.25% of every iPhone sale for its Motorola Mobility FRAND patents. “It’s not enough that Google borrowed the phone’s look and feel to make Android?” Phillip Elmer-Dewitt ask for Fortune.

“2.25% of the selling price of the product as a whole,” FOSS Patents’ Florian Mueller writes, “is absolutely out of step with the concept of FRAND and with industry practice.”

P.E.D. writes, “One can only imagine what Steve Jobs would say to Google’s latest gambit. The proprietary technology he felt Google had ‘stolen’ (his word) from Apple to build Android was original work, and not something Apple had asked to be made an industry standard. To try to create an equivalence with so-called essential patents — at least one of which dates back to the age of the pager — that Motorola promised at the time to share fairly with all comers may be the modern definition of chutzpah.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: A smartphone might involve as many as 250,000 (largely questionable) patent claims, and our competitors want to impose a “tax” for these dubious patents that makes Android devices more expensive for consumers… Instead of competing by building new features or devices, they are fighting through litigation… This anti-competitive strategy is also escalating the cost of patents way beyond what they’re really worth… Fortunately, the law frowns on the accumulation of dubious patents for anti-competitive means — which means these deals are likely to draw regulatory scrutiny, and this patent bubble will pop.David Drummond, Google Senior Vice President and Chief Legal Officer, after Apple and others acquired Novell’s patent portfolio, August 3, 2011

How’s your foot taste, Davey?

Related articles:
Apple gets support from Cisco on need to curb FRAND abuse – February 9, 2012
Apple asked standards body to set rules for essential FRAND patents – February 8, 2012
Motorola Mobility wants 2.25% of Apple’s sales for standards-essential wireless patents license – February 4, 2012
Google legal honcho: Apple, Oracle, Microsoft use ‘bogus patents’ to wage hostile campaign against sainted Android – August 3, 2011

41 Comments

    1. “This anti-competitive strategy is also escalating the cost of patents way beyond what they’re really worth”

      Notice they like to talk about the low value of patents when they have none, and now massively overvalue FRAND patents when they aquire some. If that’s not the definition of hypocricy I don’t know what is.

      1. Precisely – the same way they argued for net neutrality before they had a smartphone OS, and then suddenly turned their back on it once they partnered with a carrier.

        For more illustrations of Google’s blatant hypocrisy, FOSS Patents has two articles which illustrate the hole Google is digging themselves into. They’re basically arguing for two mutually exclusive extremes.

        1. We already have:
          No animal shall sleep in a bed with sheets.
          No animal shall drink alcohol to excess.
          No animal shall kill any other animal without cause.

          Pretty soon:
          Four legs good, two legs better

  1. Wow, talk about a bunch of jerks.

    I am reminded of the scene near the end of Trading Places where Eddie Murphy overhears the exchange of a dollar bet.

    I can’t wait for Google to eat some orange futures.

    1. Better that Google pay Apple a gazillion dollars for every android sold, and Apple pay Google -2.50 for every iPhone sold (that negative sign means Apple collects from Google). I hope evil Google gets sued out of business. Google is despicable.

    2. That doesn’t sound like a fair deal to me. Motorola patents are FRAND patents, while Apple’s aren’t. FRAND patents must be licensed fairly etc. Non-FRAND patents don’t need to be licensed at all. In a way, you can’t infringe a FRAND patent, you can just disagree on price.

      By Google’s word, there are 250 000 patents in a phone. If we assume that the value of all patents are 20% of the total value of a phone (there is value also in HW, SW, marketing, packaging and manufacturing too, for example) average value of one patent in an iPhone is around 0,0005 $. Fair value of a frand patent should be significantly lower – lets say 1/100 – than the value of an equivalent non-FRAND patent.

      My fair deal based on that:
      Apple should pay to Google something around 1 cent per iPhone, and Android should stop using Apple’s patented inventions for as long as the patents are valid.

    1. I wish he was still around to kick this asshole back to where he belongs. Still I’m confident that the guys running Apple now are 100% behind Steve moving forward and will collectively kick Google ass back to hell.

  2. It may not be as good as a Google search, but I started using Bing (default) some time ago because I think Google is a piece of crap, and I won’t have them benefitting from my searches.

    1. I also switched to Bing, not because it’s necessarily better (I think they often just steal Google search results anyway) but because I despise Google. Even Google lovers are coming to see how polluted their search results are and how cluttered their interface is becoming.

    2. Im using Blekko and it is in many ways better than google. I can easily get only the results I want on the first search (ie “pandas zoo /news” gives me current news with pandas and zoo in it while “pandas zoo /image” gives me photos iPad /shopping give me shopping/pricing info) there are hundreds of “slashtags” once you memorize the ones you need most searching is easier and faster.
      I have it set as a default search in Alfred (where I do most of my searching from) and my default engine in chrome (yes I use crome as my “second browser” because I am not willing to install flash in my system and I sometimes (hulu for example) need to play flash content.)
      Anyhow anyone interested in a search alternative check out blekko.com
      (Disclaimer: I work in film/network post production and have nothing to do with this company at all (other than I think their search engine rocks!)

    1. Actually, it should be Jobs’s. (pronounce both and you’ll hear the difference).

      When you write Jobs’, that implies a possessive form of a plural noun (one job, multiple jobs, so possessive is jobs’, as in “Foxconn jobs’ value is in their stability”). Tabloids often make the same mistake (using the plural possessive form for singular proper surnames; it all probably started when a brand of English muffins misspelt their name as Thomas’, instead of Thomas’s Enghlish Muffins; they misspell it with one, but pronounce with two esses). You’ll never see a proper newspaper (NY Times, LA Times, Times of London, etc) make such mistake.

      1. Predrag,
        OMG. did you just list the Times as a proper newspaper?
        I will have you know, you are responsible for the film of coffee spray now on on my desktop and keyboard.
        Well thanks at any rate, for the morning giggle.

  3. If Apple is in violation of Google’s patents, then Apple should pay Google. If Google is in violation of Apple patents then Google should pay Apple. End of story.

    And as far as saying Android ripped off the iPhone, if you used that argument, then every item you have ever purchased would be only the first company that invented it. So the only car around would be Benz, the only phone would be a Bell phone, etc. etc. If Apple has patents on how some of the features or technology works, then they can sue for that or license them out but just saying no one else can make a touch screen phone because they have one is ridiculous. I have had both Android and iPhones. While I like my iPhone better than my Android phone, there are many things on my Android phone that work better than the iPhone and these better differences can and do show up on the others phones and make the phone better. iPhones notifications suck big until they copied what Android was doing. I am OK with that, now my iPhone is better. Now I hope iPhone takes the GPS mapping and gets their act together and puts a good one on iPhone. Siri on the iPhone sucks. More times then not, it says, ” I am sorry, I cannot do that for you now”. I never had that issue with my voice commands on Android. Hopefully iPhone will get that right with ideas from Android.

    But people on here that are Apple fans really need to chill. While I love my iPhone, sometimes the one sided, narrow minds of some Apple zealots makes me not want to be seen with an Apple product as you sound like nut cases. BTW..I have and iPad, iPhone, and two MacBook Airs as well as Microsoft machines and I feel I am far more partial than most Apple people are.

    1. “iPhones notifications suck big until they copied what Android was doing.”

      Actually Android copied the jailbroken iPhone store Cydia, so Apple didn’t rip off Google here. Even if they did, you can hardly compare wholesale coping the iPhone to ripping off a single feature. I will grant you that the pre iOS 5 notifications were terribad.

      As far as “chilling”, no. I decline. Ripping off someone else’s ideas is a big problem and there’s a reason for the existence of patents, but they are an imperfect way to keep people from ripping off your ideas. Do I think that the first inventor should own the market they create? Yes, for a limited time. Absolutely. Poloroid successfully sued Kodak for ripping off their instant film cameras, and won an injunction and the exact same thing should happen with Android.

      After awhile, say maybe 10 or 12 years, there should be freedom to make multi touch phones other than Apple, but in the mean time anyone that wants to rip off the iPhone should have permission, and or license it from the creator.

      It’s true that touch screen phones existed prior to iPhone but there were no touch screen app phones, and there were no multi touch portable devices at all in wide circulation anywhere by anyone.

      1. Nonsense, how did Android copy Cydia when it was release a year before Cydia with the notification system pretty much unchanged. Why can’t you just give Android some credit for a unified notification system which most mobile platforms copied.

        Apple did not invent a multi touch screen that’s the problem with that patent. Thats why Apple in Jan paid Elan $5million dollars and signed a cross licensing deal.

        Also Apples multi touch patents are not about phones but capacitive multi touch screens otherwise the patents would be useless when seeking tablets. .

    2. Google’s patents are FRAND-patents. If Apple is in violation, they should pay a fair amount (how much if fair for a patent, when there are 250000 patents in a phone?). Apple’s patents are not FRAND. If Google is violating, they should stop violating, or get licensed on Apple’s terms, regardless of how unfair.

      You must know that patents aren’t forever, and Bell did patent the phone, just like Benz did his car. However – as you can’t patent an idea – that did not stop others from doing their own implementations as long as they were different enough, even while those patents were valid.

      That’s the case now too. Apple doesn’t want to be the only one making touch screen phones, but they want others to create their own ways of doing it. A patent for e.g. a “capacitive touch screen device” covers (most probably a very small) portion of one spesific way to implement it. You can copy the idea, but you can’t copy that implementation (this is what’s meant with “good artist copy, great artist steal”).

      Almost never a patented way is the only way, and usually not even the best. That’s how innovation works: invent an even better way to do something that allready has been done – and patented – multiple different ways.

      I’d like to see other companies inventing new ways to do something even better – or better yet, create something really new instead of just waiting for Apple to create it for copying. Like Siri, that’s something truly new (notifications not so much) every company had the chance to make “the next big thing” instead of iPhone-clones. Still, it was Apple that did it. And still it’s possible to create a Siri-like functionality without violating Apple’s patents, but it might be hard to make it as good without violating. I’d love to see Google to do it the hard way and invent something even better instead of violating.

      Most people seems to think that what’s best for consumer is copying, and the subsequent race to the bottom to get low prices. In fact, what’s best for the consumer is what’s best for the human race: innovative new features that advances technology to the next level. Unfortunately, now there is only one source for that.

  4. Google can suck it. I never thought I could ever “hate” a company more than Microsoft but Google now takes the cake. What does that mean? I’m now using Bing over Google for search and Gmail is ancient history. F U C K Google.

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