Interesting turn of events for Apple. The choice Apple now faces is how to enforce their patents. It seems HTC and Microsoft/Nokia are likely fine due to earlier patent licensing deals, but Samsung and Google aren’t looking to hot. However, I don’t think it is as dire as Jason Mick makes it out to be.
Apple was out for blood with Google/Samsung, but that seemed driven more by “hot heads” than by business motivations (i.e. it was personal). It seemed like it was pushed by Steve Jobs with perhaps Forstall encouraging it. The read I have on Tim Cook is that he is a lot more analytical in his operations.
The smartest move would be to make it more expensive to sell Android devices through licensing agreements with these companies. They could still be crafted, like Google does with Google Android apps, that would keep Android hardware companies “in line” but that would also make money for Apple with each handset sold.
This should be very interesting to watch.1
I’d love for Apple to be a little cheeky and line-item Android patent licensing income. “And this quarter we made $793 million dollars from Android device sales. Off of Android sales of XX million units, note that is not the activation number Google touts, but the real ‘sold’ figure, as calculated by our licensing partners.” ↩