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Whoa Now, Apple is Willing to License Patents to Samsung and Motorola? What Happened to “Thermonuclear War?”

Wait a minute Apple, we thought the term “license” was banned for life from your campus like a Gizmodo editor. What’s this we are hearing about you offering potential licensing deals of patents to Samsung and Motorola? No more “thermonuclear war?” What happened to spending every last penny in the bank to destroy Android? Oh, things have changed according to sources familiar with the matter.

After battling with the entire Android world for a couple of years now, Apple may have realized that ridding the world of their biggest competitor’s partners is probably not going to happen. Reports have them offering licensing deals of $5 – $15 per device to Samsung and Motorola, two companies that they have both won and lost patent spats with in the last few months. These numbers come in at around 1% – 2.5% of net sales per device, which are numbers similar to what Moto was asking them for in their German win, yet Apple whined like children at how unfair of a number it was.

Company spokespersons from all of the companies involved refused to comment, so this is all unconfirmed for now. It certainly tells you one thing though, that Apple’s direction and focus is already changing with Tim Cook at the helm.

Via:  BGR, Nasdaq

  • CORYK333

    Diggin’ that DOPE picture up there!!!!

  • Ulnek75

    what happened?  steve jobs died.  the warden of apple is no longer so apple is relaxing a bit.

    • Jonathonflores6958

      Beat me to it by 11 minutes.

  • Balls

    simple, more money from patents then their own products, less effort and resources in court

    smart move.

  • evltwn

    Not sure if you can trust BGR as a source. But if NASDAQ is reporting the same thing, it just might be true.

  • jeff3yan

    I just wish at least one company would get sued into oblivion. I’m not a fanboy by any means, although I am a fanboy of disappointed fanboys.

  • Thanassi

    I like how there are birds flying in the Thermonuclear War.

  • http://www.vgchartz.com SuperChunk

    Probably mentioned, but this is probably due to Google buying Motorola. Apple knows that once Google has full control of these IPs it will use is massive bank account to hit Apple hard and thus it now makes more sense to setup cross licensing agreements. (Does Google have full control yet?)

  • BrandoHD

    I await the approval of Google’s software patent for the notification bar, then let the cross-licensing begin….

  • seronac

    Well, Jobs is dead, so he can’t do anything about it; they can spend truck loads of money on attorneys and lawsuits, or make a few bucks from each device that’s sold. It sounds like a business decision to me.  And if Jobs really believed that Android was a ripoff, he would have already gone thermonuclear.  Competition is good, because products get better, and everyone wins.  Long live capitalism.

    (The pic is cool, but it’s not widescreen; it’ll look stupid on a 16:9 monitor.)

  • Zippitydoodah!

    This is great news for Windows Phone! Now, not only will Android OEM’s have to pay Redmond, but Cupertino as well. Mountain View is going to look less and less desirable to them.

  • fauxshizzl

    The jab at Gizmodo made my day. Nice work.

  • possomcrast1

    With steve jobs gone they seem to be becoming a lot more lenient maybe that’s just me..

  • Josh Flowers

    Homer: “nucular…it’s pronounced, nucular”

  • Butters619

    They’ll be making more money per Android device than Google. 

  • Lane252

    lol Im stealing this picture :)

  • mustbepbs

    Finally Apple has the bullocks to admit defeat and settle.

  • Greyhame

    Finally, a good riddance to the Jobsian patent mindset??  Yes please.

    This is the way it should be, versus wholesale banning of products (for “similar looks” nonsense, REALLY?). I believe fair compensation for IP is the only way to come to an [somewhat] amicable agreement between all parties involved.

    Maybe *pple is finally realizing there’s no slowing this Android locomotive and are trying to give themselves a safety net of sorts? ;)

    • possomcrast1

      He basically thought he and apple were completely responsible for the technological world we know and love today. No big deal really. LOL JK if anyone is very responsible for the personal computing we know and love its the other Steve (that i actually like) Steve Wozniak.

  • http://www.hammertechnologies.net/ Chase Johnson

    So Im suing you because you are winning – to – ill let you stay bu t you have to pay me because im still losing?

    HAHAHAHA. Go find a tree to hang from Apple.

  • unkanny

    If they are gonna lend license per device..there may be a chance Motorola and Samsung will limit their phone unit production to cut cost right?

    • unkanny

      and/or more pricier phones..

    • Peter Kelly

      With $10 additional license fee, Moto and Sammie will increase the cost of the phone by $25.
      Verizon will subsequently increase the price of the subsidized phone by $50.

      It’s a win-win! 

      • http://www.vgchartz.com SuperChunk

        I didn’t notice any increases when MS signed licensing deals with ALL of these OEMS.

  • Droidfan

    Smart try on Apple’s part.  They are only breaking in the battles outside the US.  And Judge William Alsup’s recent rulings in the Oracle/Google case must be sending some scary signals here in the US.  The smart thing for Apple and Google would be to cross license their patents for no dollars and move on.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jonathanf Jonathan Fingas

    There’s an important distinction between Apple and Microsoft (as well as many other lawsuit filers, for that matter): Apple based it on a real, ideological point of view about Android.

    Many (not all) here like to harbor the false notion that Apple is trying to sue rather than compete, but the truth is that Steve Jobs genuinely believed Google was copying the iPhone (and to a small extent, it was — if only because of how rapidly it swung from a BlackBerry-like design to a full-touch interface).  As he put it, he’d rather have drained Apple of all its cash than let HTC, Motorola, Samsung, et. al. “get away” with what he thought was them and Google riding on Apple’s hard work.

    Don’t forget that Eric Schmidt was on the Apple board sometime before and for a short while after the iPhone came out.  Imagine how Jobs felt when one of his board members was trying to undermine a product he’d shipped first?

    With Jobs gone, that fire isn’t there.  Apple is now thoroughly entrenched in several lawsuits, so it can’t just drop everything — it may just see more pragmatism in asking for a royalty and calling it a day.  That would accomplish the intended goal (“Hey!  Design your own stuff!”) and let it refocus on the devices.

    • Barbacoa

      You mean like how apple designed the drop down status bar…. Oh wait… mah bad

      • http://www.facebook.com/jonathanf Jonathan Fingas

        Google also didn’t patent the notification bar (at least not until well afterwards), to my knowledge.

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Micah-Madru/100001151887665 Micah Madru

           The patent is from 09 or 08 if i remember correctly. The patent office is just really far behind from all the patent applications they get.

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1148820665 Dustin Howard

          but apple can sue samsung because their products look similar? sounds fair.

    • Michael Forte

      Don’t spread this FUD, Google already had support for touch screen devices and probably had more than one prototype device, the Blackberry esque one was just one of them. http://www.osnews.com/story/25264/Did_Android_Really_Look_Like_BlackBerry_Before_the_iPhone_

      • http://www.facebook.com/jonathanf Jonathan Fingas

        Take a look at the video — it’s the same UI as the BlackBerry-like design, just on a taller display.  I didn’t say Google didn’t have touch before; I said Google started swinging towards touch.

        • E A butler

          Hello genius, …. how did Google copy Apple?  The first Android model was the G1 MADE BY HTC, that phone had a full touch screen with a slide out keyboard.  It look very similar to the Windows mobile devices that HTC had been making for years prior to the release of iPhone.  HTC actually had some of the nicer handset designs for the Windows Mobile platform, and if Google really wanted to go the route of “blackberry” knock off i think they would not have chosen HTC to be their partner, because they were not knowm for making those type of designs. 
          I don’t know all of the facts, but check what phones looked like in the rest of the world in 2006-7.  That black berry crap was only popular in America, full touch screens with or without slideout keyboards were very popular in Asian and European markets.  I know because I owned a Windows mobile device , full touch no keyboard almost 2 years before iPhone was released, and I think it was even made by HTC, that I bought in Hong Kong. 

        • RoboRobP

          Nice try but yes you did mean that it didn’t have touch in your post “how rapidly it swung from a BlackBerry-like design to a full-touch interface”. Clearly the touch version they showed was a full touch interface so how did they swing to it? No where in your post did it state you meant the UI. Also looking at the UI only shows icons on the bottom of the screen, something both Android and the iPhone have today. How do you think it means they originally copied Blackberry for the UI only to switch to the iPhoone style, I have no clue. You say they swung towards touch but they had both being developed side by side for the obvious reason of being used. They have used both designs to this very day as well as many other designs. The whole point was to put it on many different styles of devices to appeal to different people. Keep in mind Android started development in 2003 then the iPhone in 2005.

    • ddevito

      Then why did Apple sart this AFTER Android became the #1 platform globally? 

      No, Jobs didn’t believe Android was a rip-off because if he did he wouldn’t hve waited this long to try to stop it. So if what you’re saying IS true then Android would be okay as long as it didn’t grab any market share. Yeah okay buddy.

      • http://www.facebook.com/jonathanf Jonathan Fingas

        A few things.

        First, there’s a well-known instance of Jobs berating Schmidt in 2007 after Android was public; Schmidt was at Burning Man and got yelled at over the phone.  It only got worse in 2008.  There’s a well-known instance of Jobs being very mad that Android 2.0 introduced multi-touch to the platform (Google intentionally left that out until late 2009).

        Android wasn’t the leading platform in early 2010, when the lawsuits started; it was only just starting its rapid increase in the wake of the Motorola Droid.

        No doubt the success helped incentivize suing in 2010, but there’s a number of far more practical other reasons: patents can take years to go from filing to being granted, particular implementations, and so on.  Again, all you have to do is read the biography and pay attention to earlier anecdotes; Jobs was genuinely mad.

        So, I’ve got evidence.  You’ve got feelings.  Who’s right?

        • AlexKCMO

          I read somewhere some time ago that the Google guys stayed away from any iPhone meetings as board members to avoid a conflict of interest.  They excused themselves whenever the topic came up or did not attend the meetings. 

          Again, not sure where I read that.

          • http://www.facebook.com/jonathanf Jonathan Fingas

            You’re right, to a certain point — Schmidt had to recuse himself when something came up that was a conflict of interest.  For awhile, though, that didn’t necessarily include the iPhone.  It was more of an issue later.

        • TC Infantino

          Eh, you got that right Jobs was mad, he was off his damned rocker.  Of course he was a douche to his other competition Microsoft as well. 

      • Kr00

        Now your just being douche (again). You know (or should at least be aware) that Apple filed suits as soon as Android hit the ground. As usual, you are wrong, again. It took 18 months before Apple got a hearing. Its since been back and forward for investigation, discussion and it still hasn’t had a resolution. If Google was smacked back then, we would have had this on going rubbish between manufacturers. Thats one HUGE reality distortion field you live in. Must suck to be you. 

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=10602828 Mike Hilal

      You really do live on another planet, dont you?

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1097190148 Brandon Girod

      Why are you in every Apple thread defending them like some religious zealot? You’ve got some facts right, but everything else you’ve been spewing is complete crap. Please stop shoving your opinion down my throat. 

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1097190148 Brandon Girod

        Let me state further! The only thing you’re doing it trying to spread some conspiracy theory. You don’t have any information to prove anything. Trust me, if Apple can’t prove Google copied them in a court of law with virtually unlimited resources, you certainly can’t do it here. And of course, there were touch screen phones prior to Apple. You imply Jobs thought Android copied iOS, and then say Android looked a lot like Blackberry… does that mean Apple also used Blackberry’s likeness? Just give it a rest. You don’t have any answers. You don’t have any special knowledge. You have nothing to prove. 

    • gf1fanatic

       It wasn’t competition for Jobs, it was control. Read the Isaacson biography. If Jobs wanted to take over the smartphone market, he had the chance, but in the name of control, he offered it to AT&T first. If Apple had released the iPhone for multiple carriers from the beginning, Android would never have been born. So I guess we can be grateful for Jobs’ biggest mistake.

    • RoboRobP

      Actually they were working on touchscreen design along side the “Blackberry-like design”. The information you hear from Apple lovers is wrong.

      http://www.osnews.com/story/25264/Did_Android_Really_Look_Like_BlackBerry_Before_the_iPhone_ 

  • ddevito

    Patents were meant to encourage innovation, not to be used as a weapon to stop it

    • Kr00

      Don’t you think that forcing Google to make a different or better slide to unlock action is pushing innovation? Copying what someone else does isn’t innovation either. So what’s Googles motives when they copy? Can’t be innovation can it.

      • Guest

        Have you seen ICS slide to unlock? It makes iphones look stupid.

      • Barbacoa

        You mean like all the renovation that apple does?…. 

      • Trueblue711

        You mean like how iPhone blatantly copied Android’s notification bar?

  • http://www.youtube.com/lordstickmax LordStickMax

    It’s called MAD( Mutually Assured Destruction ) and just like the cold war, these patiant wars will end the same way.  It will be slow and painful, but eventually innovation and free markets will prevail. Since everyone has the chance of getting screwed in some way.

  • Liderc

    Loving the picture, no comment on Apple.

  • ddevito

    This is still utter bullsh1t. 

  • http://twitter.com/DroidBricker Droid Bricker

    Why can’t they just call it “even” and stop this BS?  The ones who suffer are obviously consumers who have to pay for the lowlife lawyers on both sides.

  • neowiz73

    it’s about time Apple grew up and started playing it smart. Steve Jobs was a whiny brat and it sounds like Tim is truly trying to make Apple into a real innovation standard. Maybe if he loosened up the restraints on their core systems they would really take a majority of the market share in many areas and not just tablets.

  • http://www.facebook.com/mtate0408 Michael Tate

    Steve Job’s is turning over in his grave!!

  • frankandsimple

    Kellex.. whats up with the juvenile sarcasm and tone? Act a bit professional will ya?

    • Destroythanet

      Agreed. This is actually a good move from Apple, yet Kellen is still whining like some teenage fanboy. Weak.

      • EC8CH

        Yeah… he should pretend to be impartial, you know like Fox News or MSNBC.

    • MKader17

      I really agree with this as well. Also, the grammar and spelling mistakes in almost every post are kind of annoying. I know it doesn’t destroy the message, but 14 year olds can spend all day being overly opinionated and writing blogs with poor grammar (not saying that’s what DL is but I can say that the quality of posts have decreased over the past year).

      It takes someone with skill to pull from multiple sources and support an opinion with facts.

      I love DL, and I just want things that are worthy to be posted. I want the latest news, but with a information I couldn’t get from Googling it. Or at the very least, not feel like I’m supposed to hate Apple with a passion while reading it. I don’t agree with what they do and it will be a long time before I buy an Apple product (if ever), but it doesn’t mean that we can’t treat them with a little respect and look at things objectively.

      Let your commentors create the fanboyism, there will be plenty of it.

  • Barbacoa

    The Macolites are realizing that they aren’t winning. 

    • http://www.facebook.com/jonathanf Jonathan Fingas

      Given that Apple has usually been on top of the rulings so far, I’d tend to disagree…  just ask Samsung why all of its tablets suddenly have a different front design.

      • EC8CH

        Or ask apple why push has stopped in Germany.

        Different front design that apple still tried to block, which once again demonstrates how ridiculous their lawsuits are.

        • Kr00

          Push services? Like the same push services RIM, Google and Microsoft have used way before iCloud was a fart in Steve’s underpants? So why sue just ONE transgressor? Bit of a thin argument.

  • Destroythanet

    Good. Jobs’ irrational desire to “destroy” Android at all costs was dumb. Licensing is the best way for all parties to get some benefit. Smart move.

  • Jorge Leal

    more importantly, how are there birds flying inside that mushroom cloud?

    • moelsen8

      i think they’re in the foreground..

  • moelsen8

    hey it’s time to grow up

  • http://profiles.google.com/adamtruelove Adam Truelove

    If you can’t beat em, license to them.

  • Rich

    Kellex,

    Food for thought… What if, Apple lost in Germany or in some other country with their patent suits and then tried to rid the world of Android? well as easy as Apple can 86 sales of android in certain countries so can moto or Samsung or who ever it was whom won the court case over apple…

    Apple realized that they lost a bigger market, and to demand android stop selling its devices around that country would backfire and the same would happen to apple… not to mention, this is a money maker for apple since their sales for iStone are falling…

    Not to mention that was Steve Jobs personal vindication not apples… he is dead, so apple is run by someone more intelligent now…

  • http://www.thinkgeeks4u.com Hiral Patel

    Bet Jobs is looking down in disgust 

    • Stewie

      Naah, he’s too busy working on iGhost 1.0

      • zepfloyd

        …while sitting on his iCloud?

        • Peter Kelly

          Not over Germany.

    • DigitalEnforcer

      Or looking UP in disgust

      • http://twitter.com/LucasNJohnson Lucas Johnson

        You sir have made me spill my coke out my nose. 

  • Stewie

    The real story, someone from Microsoft has joined Apple, and they are now following a similar vein: If you can’t beat them, make $$$ off of them.

    MS is making a mint off every Android device sold, to the point that they make more off of Android than they do from their own mobile OS.

  • Deltaechoe

    Sounds like Apple finally has someone who isn’t a completely whiney bitch at the helm anymore.  Thank god

  • bjn714

    When does the daytime soap opera premier?

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=10215724 Raj Bhatt

    Hahaha probably because they started losing court cases. They didn’t see that coming.

  • thecharrr

     Apple is pulling a Microsoft: Don’t stop innovation, make tons of money off innovation and everyone wins

    • Stewie

      Exactly!

  • EC8CH

    observation:

    Funny how the ring of the mushroom cloud looks like the new *pple campus 2.

  • htowngtr

    Jobs died and Apple got smart about it. M$ makes more money from Android than they do from their own phones.

  • -= )v(urphy =-

    New wallpaper, that’s what just happened =)

  • http://www.Nave360.com Sebastian Gorgon

    Microsoft making more money from Android than from WP7 just happened 

    • DrHotmann

      Yeah why spend tons of money on legal fees suing the crap out of everyone when you can have a nice steady income like Microsoft.

      • Noyfb

        Its probably a trade wash, They let Moto have some of their patents, and Moto let’s them have some of theirs, even trades. Hopefully from now on they’ll diplomatically sit down and talk first before wasting millions in court fees and lawyers.
        Put the money to R&D and innovation.

  • Jason Purp

    At least somebody knocked some sense into them. Idiots.

  • SH

    At this point, just let it drag out in court. Make them prove they own the patents first. If they win, agree to pay the license fee. 

    • Jdstell

      If they win, they can get a lot more than just a licensing fee.

  • Curtis Martin

    Well, “thermonuclear war” was said by Steve Jobs, and he’s not exactly around anymore =/. He was also very particular about running things to his exact standards. Maybe things are loosening up (in a good way) over at Apple.

  • Tabe

    Thermonuclear war passed away back in October, silly!

  • EC8CH

    Jobs died, that’s what happened.

    • patapongirl

      LOL it’s exactly what I thought too.