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More patents, more problems

Patents are killing innovation, said Saadi

The ongoing patent disputes between Apple and Google and its Android partners is killing innovation, according to Malik Saadi, principal analyst at Informa Telecoms & Media.

App downloads surge as Android outstrips Apple

Android Market will support in-app billing

The world’s smartphone users will download a total of 18 billion mobile apps during 2018, up 144 per cent from 7.4 billion in 2010, according to Ovum. The firm forecast that the number of downloads will grow to 45 billion in 2016.

iPhone 5 available for pre-order

The next generation of Apple's popular iPhone is expected to be unveiled soon

The fifth iteration of Apple’s popular iPhone handset has inched closer to commercial availability with the news that Deutsche Telekom has begun taking pre-orders of the new mode.

HTC responds to tracking claims

HTC has been accused of tracking users' locations with its Sensation handset

HTC has become the latest mobile player to become embroiled in controversy over tracking users’ locations. The Taiwanese vendor faces allegations that two of its handsets, the Sensation and Evo 3D, track users’ locations without permission.

FT app gets pulled from iTunes

The FT has pulled its app from the App Store

The Financial Times (FT) has had its iPad app removed from iTunes following a dispute with Apple.

The decision was made after the FT refused to comply with Apple’s demand that is collects a 30 per cent cut from all in-app payments and subscriptions, and has ownership of all customer data that is collected.

What lies in store for post-Jobs Apple?

New Apple CEO Tim Cook: more than just a safe pare of hands?

The resignation of Steve Jobs from Apple has reignited the debate over the extent to which the company’s success and it’s charismatic leader are inseparable. Commenting on Jobs’ departure, Ovum’s chief analyst Jan Dawson suggested that there are “reasons to fear” for Apple’s future if this latest news suggests, as many believe, that Jobs health is failing.

Jobs steps down as Apple CEO

Jobs has been on medical leave since January

Apple founder Steve Jobs has resigned as the firm’s chief executive, leading to renewed speculation that his health has deteriorated further. In a brief letter to the board, Jobs wrote: “I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple’s CEO, I would be the first to let you know. Unfortunately that day has come.”

Samsung Galaxy Tab ban lifted

The Galaxy Tab 10.1, get it while you can

A ban on the sale of Samsung’s Galaxy Tab in Europe that was put in place earlier this month has been lifted already, albeit temporarily, while authorities investigate the legitimacy of the original ruling. A German court instigated the EU-wide ban (excluding the Netherlands) on the import and sale of the tablet device, after complaints from Apple that the Galaxy imitated its iPad product.

Canadian government to review Nortel patent sale

The Canadian government is set to investigate the sale of Nortel's patents

The Nortel patents auction saga took another twist Wednesday when Canadian Industry Minister Christian Paradis said that his government will hold an investigation into the sale to establish whether it complies with the terms of the Investment Canada Act.

Industry giants gang up on Google to win Nortel patents

A consortium including Apple and Microsoft has successfully bid $4.5bn for Nortel's patent assets

The bunfight for Nortel’s patent chest concluded yesterday, with Chief Strategy Officer George Riedel’s announcement that “following a very robust auction”, the winning bid came from a buyer too big for even Google to take on. Following months of speculation and a $900m kick-off bid from Mountain View, the booty has gone to a consortium that reads like a Who’s Who of the tech industry: Apple, EMC, Ericsson, Microsoft, RIM and Sony. Even with names like that in the mix, the $4.5bn price paid is still pretty eye-watering or, as Nortel’s Riedel preferred to put it, “unprecedented.”

Samsung seeks to ban Apple from US market

Samsung is seeking a ban on the import of Apple products into the US

The patent dispute between Apple and Samsung has escalated another few notches with Samsung’s announcement Wednesday that it will seek to ban imports of Apple’s devices into the United States.

Google in spat with Taiwanese government

Google has suspended all Android Market sales in Taiwan, following a spat with the government there

Taiwan’s Taipei City Government has accused Google of attempting “to hold Taiwan’s consumers hostage, in exchange for the privilege of refusing to follow Taiwanese law.” The accusation arises from a dispute between Google and Taiwanese regulators that has resulted in the suspension of all paid-for applications in the Android market in that country.

China is Apple’s second largest market for apps

China is Apple's biggest app market after America

China is Apple’s second largest market for apps, after America. App analysis firm Distimo’s latest report reveals that, while the Asian app market is booming, it’s not exactly a gold rush: free applications rule the roost, with paid-for offerings only driving about a third of the revenue they do in the US.

Microsoft’s Skype deal gets the go-ahead

Microsoft's bid for Skype has been approved by US authorities

Microsoft’s bid for Skype has received the go-ahead from American anti-trust regulators, following an “early termination” of a review into the proposed sale. Under America’s Hart-Scott-Rodinho (HSR) Act, certain types of large mergers and acquisitions deals must be submitted for review by the government.

Nokia takes a bite out of Apple

Apple has agreed to pay Nokia licensing fees for its technologies

Nokia has announced the settlement of a long-running patent spat with Apple. Under the terms of the agreement, Apple will pay an undisclosed lump sum as well as ongoing royalty payments for its use of patents Nokia claims belong to it. Both parties have agreed to withdraw their respective complaints to the US International Trade Commission (ITC).

Apple iCloud to take on Amazon and Google

Apple's introduction of iCloud is likely to finally introduce the concept of cloud computing to the masses

As expected, Steve Jobs took to the stage Monday at the Apple Worldwide Developer Conference in San Fransico to reveal iCloud, a collection of cloud services designed to work seamlessly with its iOS and MacOS X devices and computers.

US DoJ reportedly concerned about Nortel patent bids

The US DoJ is reportedly concered that bids for Nortel patents will be used to reduce competition in the telecoms market

As interest in defunct kit maker Nortel’s patent portfolio heightens, the US Department of Justice (DoJ) is reported to be taking a close interest in the bidders. Apple is the latest company reported to be interested in making a purchase after Google opened bidding with a $900m offer in April. Now the DoJ is said to be concerned that the patents will be used to stymie competition in the telecoms sector.

Google wants real-time comms in the browser

Google has announced the open sourcing of its WebRTC framework for real time browser-based video and audio communications. The technology, which Google acquired when it bought Global IP Solutions last year, has been released under a royalty-free BSD license.

Microsoft to take on patent trolls

Microsoft has joined the fight against "non-practising entities"

As tit-for-tat patent infringement litigation steps up a few notches in the telecoms world, people with a sense of irony will no doubt appreciate the news that Microsoft has signed up as the first member of a new organisation challenging specious software patents. The company that has threatened the likes of Salesforce and TomTom over their use of Linux (which Redmond claims infringes on Microsoft IP – an assertion that has yet to be tested in court) has signed up for Litigation Avoidance, a crowdsourcing service “designed to help companies analyse and act on patents of questionable quality.”

Erase and rewind

AWIW_20.05.11

In a week during which the UK distinguished itself as the “Whiplash Capital of Europe” thanks to its rep for filing dodgy insurance claims, The Informer is pleased to note that, in the technology world at least, injury-preventing U-turns have been the order of the day.

@telecoms