Aping Apple – Stupid, stupid mobile manufacturers

Samsung and Apple

So, Apple have scored their first major hit in the patents brouhaha that has been going on for a while.

I had no idea that we would ever have these patent wars on our hands in the mobile industry. I however did not like the way that every Tom, Dick, and Harry began to ape Apple’s iPhone after that device was released years ago. Suddenly, it was as if all manufacturers lost their heads and creativity was largely thrown to the dogs. Every smartphone wanted to be a slab. Every smartphone wanted to do pinch-to-zoom.

It was mediocrity at best, and stupidity at worst. Apple made a huge impression because they were creative and did something different. But everyone now wanted to make a similar impression by aping Apple. That’s “insiwination.” No; that is not a dictionary word. It is a word that I coined years ago. In Yoruba language, an “asiwin” is a mad man. Insiwination is my coined word to give special effects to madness. Aping Apple is madness.

Why must every smartphone be a slab? Why must everyone be outdoing themselves to copy the iPhone? Dolts! Even if you had to create a slab, must you ape the iPhone?

Followers of this blog know that I don’t like iOS much. It is pretty much unusable for me. But I have never denied that iOS is innovative. I don’t give a dog a bad name to hang it. In its current state, iOS is not for me, but that doesn’t make it bad or terrible.

You can argue all you like, but I insist that a company like RIM should leverage on their strength – the hardware QWERTY keyboard (which they have perfected to a fine art) and their range of services. We all don’t want iPhone-look-alikes. I want a BlackBerry, not an iPhone. If I want an iPhone, I will go buy one. I insist that Windows Phone is truly innovative. Even though running a slab-based UI, it is different. Like it or hate it, Windows Phone is innovative.

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After reading news of the Apple-Samsung judgement, I got angry. I got angry, not with Apple, but with the stupid, stupid mobile manufacturers who have become good at only one thing: aping an outsider who sneaked into your court and stole your game. Sorry losers, all of them. Shame. This could have been avoided if they had innovated and been creative, instead of being lousy copy-cats.

Hopefully, with this present reality, our mobile manufacturers will head back to the drawing board and get creative once again. Perhaps then, consumers can begin to enjoy real choices once again.

Sue them, Apple. Sue their sorry behinds. All of them.

Mister Mobility

I started blogging about mobile in 2004 as a fun way to share my passion for gadgets and mobile services. My other interests include digital media, speaking and teaching, photography, travelling, and dancing.

0 thoughts on “Aping Apple – Stupid, stupid mobile manufacturers

  • August 25, 2012 at 8:23 am
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    If i were Samsung i’d pay up with smiles to my face. It was worth it especially now that we are the number 1 smartphone coy out there.
    Lets face it, the truth is that apple products are the hottest products out there and everyone is copying one thing or the other from them. Everyone from Microsoft, Google, everyone

  • August 25, 2012 at 8:29 am
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    Apple wanted $2+ billion, they were only awarded $1bn. Samsung takes a risk by appealing in Silicon Valley and expecting to win.

    If this means going back to the drawing board, so be it, but I suspect that’s not what Apple wants – they want to rule it all.

  • August 25, 2012 at 9:17 am
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    i am annoyed as well. But unlike Mr Mo, against Apple. Its so unfortunate that they were grated patent for such essential shape like the rectangle with rounded edges. So other manufacturers should making phones that are not rectangular in shape and with sharp edges? Everyone knows the rounded edges were to reduce damage possibilities while falling.

    Those patents are frivolous. All those claims existed before in prior arts. Apple didnt invent any. The judgement is only going to result in fewer choices available to the american consumer. Apple is not out to protect any patent mind you. They are just out to beat their competitors through the back door. What they foresee difficult doing at the market place.

    Just like martinkem and noni said, i will advise samsung not to appeal cos they wont win. Apple is their jewel in the US.

  • August 25, 2012 at 9:29 am
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    for some weird reason i can only sign on to MN through desktop and never on my mobile in recent days. I have tried all the browsers and access app sites, same no ni. Thats why i you haven’t been seeing any comment from me.

    Mr MO, any solution?

    • August 25, 2012 at 10:14 am
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      for some weird reason i can only sign on to MN through desktop and never on my mobile in recent days. I have tried all the browsers and access app sites, same no ni. Thats why i you haven’t been seeing any comment from me.

      Mr MO, any solution?

      I am able to login from all the mobile devices available here. Can you send a detailed support request to: mobility@mobility.com.ng detailing the devices, browsers and mobile networks involved? Thanks.

    • August 26, 2012 at 10:04 pm
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      I don’t know o. But somehow I was able to log on through my Note’s stock browser this evening using the yahoo window. Will see how it goes. Thanks for the quick response.

  • August 25, 2012 at 9:37 am
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    the patents cache must be awash with a lot of bullshit frivolous patents.

    patents on “icon”? “shapes”?. jeeze!

    maybe Samsung and LG should rush and jointly patent the “phablet” size of smartphones?

    after all, if a Monoplistic Bully can patent SHAPE”, why can’t others patent “sizes”.

    Rubbish!

  • August 25, 2012 at 11:33 am
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    Apple did make a very good case in the court by showing how determined Samsung was in copying the shape and look and feel of its devices, the internal memos cannot be denied. On the issue of copying Apple’s devices, Samsung is simply guilty so Samsung’s lawyers should have concentrated their efforts more in trying to prove that those patents were invalid.

    They should have spent their efforts to prove that Apple stole other people’s ideas and patented that and thus have no moral justifications going to court claiming invention of anything. Unfortunately, some of such arguments and supported evidences never made it to the court because they were probably lazy. Well I think Samsung should appeal the decision to see how they manage and right this wrong or at least reduce the financial penalty.

  • August 25, 2012 at 12:21 pm
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    Samsung is contesting and will go to the Appeal Court.

    Certainly, some aspects of Samsung products are similar to iPhones.

    Additional, China and US have 1 hidden similarity, they greatly support Home grown.

    Apple is a sure winner, but the war is not yet over.

    The coming weeks verdict may also lead to banning some Samsung products in US.

  • August 25, 2012 at 1:52 pm
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    @henry the American patent law doesn’t care abot who invented it first but who filed for the patent first. And that’s what Apple is playing on, Samsung should just cough up the dough from the monies apple pays them to produce parts for the iphone and also license or remove the items they are found to infringe on in their new devices

  • August 25, 2012 at 2:41 pm
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    If Apple had made the first car, they’d sue everyone else for putting headlights on the front, brake lights on the back and seats on the inside since they thought of that first.

    If Apple had made the first airplane, they’d sue everyone else for putting wings on them since they thought of it first.

    I’m actually suprised that they don’t sue other MP3 makers for having headphone jacks on them. Oh wait, they didn’t think of that first.____extracted from somewhere.

    I utterly hate Apple for this ruling, and according to SAMSUNG… It is unfortunate that patent law can be manipulated to give one company a monopoly over rectangles with rounded corners.

  • August 25, 2012 at 3:35 pm
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    Its unfortunate, that’s a sh*tload of money. I agree the earlier Galaxies closely resembled an Iphone. When I still had my 4′ Galaxy, had em girls giggle and say “can I see your iphone”. As for the docking system, I also agree it closesly resembles dat of Apple. So, in my very unlawyery opinion (have no idea how law works) couldn’t Sammy have proposed to withdraw the Apple look alike devices (the newer models; S2 n S3 do not have the typical slab shape) and perhaps also promise to overhaul the touchwhiz UI which I think needs tweaking instead of fighting the patent? Like I said I don’t know how the law works so that’s my amateur opinion.

    Secondly, on a forum somewhere someone proposed that manufacturers should adopt a ‘triangle shaped’ design. This is utterly silly, then I would have to buy a pouch/phone bag to carry the darn thing.

    Nokia X7 has an unusual form factor (it almost looks like It can be used as a weapon sef) but it is still pretty.

    Its not all about givin me quad-core, 41mp cameras, pixels that my eyes cannot see, 4gb ram. How about giving me a device with a form factor that would be visually appealing and stand me out. Easier said than done as the ‘slab format’ is highly pocket and user friendly but if they focus their genuisness on a new form factor, they would definitely birth something awesome.

    Ps: triangles and Circles are out. U high?

  • August 25, 2012 at 3:36 pm
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    Harry Echemco:

    ”Unfortunately, some of such arguments and supported evidences never made it to the court because they were probably lazy.”

    Lazy, nothing could be farther from the truth! I’ve been keenly following this trial for some weeks now. Samsung’s arguments was largely handicapped by the Judge who refused a lot of their evidence and ruled them as irrelevant. It was obvious Apple was going to win, what i didn’t expect was that margin of victory. I thought some of the absolutely ridiculous patents would be struck out and Samsung’s counter-claims would be awarded.

    I actually rooted for Samsung to win

  • August 25, 2012 at 3:50 pm
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    @saiddigge:

    I think they were lazy because some of the filings were ruled to be late and not allowed to stand. I was also following the case so my statement is a fact not far from the truth.

  • August 25, 2012 at 3:51 pm
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    ”Suddenly, it was as if all manufacturers lost their heads and creativity was largely thrown to the dogs. Every smartphone wanted to be a slab. Every smartphone wanted to do pinch-to-zoom.”

    Mister Mo, there’re just so many ways you can design a smartphone! With the level of advances in tech one would need some level of COPYCATism to compete in the mobile world these days. Look at some of these patents for heavens sake! Tap to zoom, pinch to zoom, bounce at the end of scrolling, rectangle with rounded edges, slide/swipe to unlock! Seriously? These’re mundane things that would’ve been done by any manufacturer, Apple just got the hang of it first. Or do we now have to lick the screen to zoom or make the device’s corners pointed like pencil tip because Apple did it first?

    I concede that Nokia, and a few other compainies like RIM and Microsoft have actually done a good job of original innovations and they made genuine novel inventions, yeah. But how many of their products’re selling as beautifully as iPhones and Galaxies now??? Yeah, the hype is all about touchscreen slabs with huge screens now! My competitor is selling a touchscreen slab with rounded edges, it is only logical i release something similar to catch up. I hope the appeal changes things drastically. With the way Apple is going, phones’re either going to get ridiculously expensive(because of licenses) or our choices would be limited(monopoly) if this precedent is set.

    There.

    • August 25, 2012 at 4:02 pm
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      saiddigge,

      Look at some of these patents for heavens sake! Tap to zoom, pinch to zoom, bounce at the end of scrolling, rectangle with rounded edges, slide/swipe to unlock! Seriously? These’re mundane things that would’ve been done by any manufacturer, Apple just got the hang of it first.

      That’s the whole point of patents: that someone put in some effort to get the hang of it first and to file a patent..

      Are you aware of the fees that other mobile manufacturers pay to Nokia? Are you aware of how basic those things are to mobile wireless technology? Well, Nokia got the hang of those first too, and EVERYBODY who uses them pays. Even Apple pays Nokia to use them.

      Something may seem mundane to you, but lots of money probably went into R&D to get it working.

      Anyone dissatisfied with how the patents system works should start a campaign to overhaul it. For now, the law’s the law, and copying someone’s patemts without approval and paying is stealing.

      Its just that simple.

  • August 25, 2012 at 8:44 pm
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    ”For now, the law’s the law,and copying someone’s patemts without approval and paying is stealing.”

    Then why’s Apple not winning similar lawsuits in other countries???

    • August 25, 2012 at 9:04 pm
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      Then why’s Apple not winning similar lawsuits in other countries???

      Easy. Laws differ from country to country.

  • August 26, 2012 at 12:50 am
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    Read everyone’s comment(s) and learnt alot from them.
    Like the Bible said, when the edge is broken (the-missing-chunk-from-apple’s-icon), a serpent shall bite. This time around, the serpent is biting from the broken edge.
    Not been a fan of Apple products really but these filed offenses or whatever is being stroked against Samsung is just so “insiwine”
    It may lead to a war that never existed.

  • August 26, 2012 at 4:41 am
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    Quick questions. Is there anybody who wanted to buy an iPhone or iPad but unknowingly bought a Samsung galaxy S2 or galaxy tab instead? What is the essence of patents?
    Even my grandfather’s back door in his house built in the 1960s has always had the disputed slide-to-unlock feature in the i-devices. lol

  • August 26, 2012 at 6:17 am
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    ///
    Even my grandfather’s
    back door in his house
    built in the 1960s has
    always had the disputed
    slide-to-unlock feature in
    the i-devices. lol ///

    ROTL….

    Abimbola, you are a Genius!

  • August 26, 2012 at 8:06 am
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    Guys, a patent is a patent. If you have a problem with a patent, it’s not Apple’s fault. Take it up with the patent office.

    For those scoffing at rounded corners, have you noticed how many phones have rounded edges without looking like the iPhone, and how many tablets have rounded edges without looking like the iPad?

    Members of the jury were not fools. In this case, there was too much copy-and-paste.

    Like someone asked this morning, what is innovative about a bunch of phones that look and act like an iPhone? This ruling will enhance true innovation, not stifle it.

  • August 27, 2012 at 2:29 pm
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    This whole thing is very absurd. USA is touted to have a percentage literacy of 99% and yet things like similarity in shapes creating confusion among consumers is allowed to stand in a law court. I mean, these two groups of products have both company names and logos on their devices, so how can someone who set out to buy an Apple iPhone end up with a Samsung Galaxy series Android device?

    Most shops that sell phones and computers in the USA allow prospective buyers play with the device and I have played with both Android phones and Apple iPhones and know they don’t work alike. I really do not understand this confusion allegations with the level of literacy in the US. And if anybody is truly ever confused between the two devices, is it not reasonable to concluded that those people do not really know what they were going for and should be allowed to make their choices?

    I cannot deny that some of Samsung’s Galaxy series phones look like Apple’s iPhone or that Samsung probably set out to produce phones that look like Apple iPhone but that’s not to say that the similarity is close enough to cause confusion. Appeal is simply inevitable because, I just don’t see how a company that stole other people’s designs and rushed to patent them should be allowed to maintain the claim that it invented those designs.

    And if it is really confusion, how come Android platform keeps growing market share year over year. Is it so difficult to tell American people that the only way to identify Apple iPhones is through its logo and the Apple brand name.

  • August 27, 2012 at 3:52 pm
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    A great Article, Mr. Mobility. This article appeared to have been written in Heaven. Your points are pertinent and I cannot fault any of your logic.

    Samsung ought to stop whining and take steps to introduce work-around to the offending patents. I think HTC did a similar thing when faced with similar patent row with Apple. They did a work-around the Apple patent, instead of crying foul.

    If Samsung had come up with S-Voice before Siri, wouldn’t we give them credit for it? It’s never too late though for Samsung, and in fact any other company to innovate and lead the Tech world to become the next “cool” thing.

  • August 27, 2012 at 6:04 pm
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    You are completely right about Windows Phone. One can argue that its strategy is counterproductive when looking at numbers, but I think it will pay off in the long run. On the other hand, I think Apple is also experiencing a loss of ideas and since they are not able to come out with something really innovative (which they proved time and again they are able to do), they resort to sue the competition to keep people talking – a mere publicity stunt, if you ask me.

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