judgecorp writes "Shanghai Zhizhen Network Technology is suing Apple in China, claiming Siri infringes its voice technology patent. Zhizhen claims to have 100 million users for its Xiao iRobot software which responds to voice questions and commands. From the article: 'The move came only days after Apple Inc paid $60 million to Proview Technology (Shenzhen) to end a protracted legal dispute over the iPad trademark in China. Zhizhen's patent covers "a type of instant messaging chat robot system", according to the database of the country's State Intellectual Property Office. It was filed on Aug 13, 2004, and got approved on Feb 15, 2006. '"
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westlake writes "CNET reports that Apple is turning its back on the EPA supported EPEAT hardware certification program. One of the problems EPEAT sees are barriers to recycling. Batteries and screens glued into place — that sort of thing. There is a price for Apple in this: CIO Journal notes that the U.S. government requires that 95 percent of its electronics bear the EPEAT seal of approval; large companies such as Ford and Kaiser Permanente require their CIOs to buy from EPEAT-certified firms; and many of the largest universities in the U.S. prefer to buy EPEAT-friendly gear."
walterbyrd writes "The latest in the ridiculous saga of the patent dispute between Apple and Samsung, which has resulted in Samsung phones and tablets being banned from sale in the U.S. is that Samsung, with the help of Google, has been pushing out an over-the-air software update to make its phones worse. Yes, the OTA update is designed to take away a feature, in an effort to convince the judge that the phones no longer violate Apple's patents. The feature in question? The ability to do a single search that covers both the local device and the internet."
imamac sends this quote from a Reuters report: "The U.S. judge who tossed out one of the biggest court cases in Apple's smartphone technology battle is questioning whether patents should cover software or most other industries at all. ... Posner said some industries, like pharmaceuticals, had a better claim to intellectual property protection because of the enormous investment it takes to create a successful drug. Advances in software and other industries cost much less, he said, and the companies benefit tremendously from being first in the market with gadgets — a benefit they would still get if there were no software patents. 'It's not clear that we really need patents in most industries,' he said. Also, devices like smartphones have thousands of component features, and they all receive legal protection. 'You just have this proliferation of patents,' Posner said. 'It's a problem.' ... The Apple/Motorola case did not land in front of Posner by accident. He volunteered to oversee it."
AlistairCharlton writes "Online retailer Amazon is developing its own smartphone to take on the Apple iPhone and handsets that run the Google Android operating system, according to media reports 'Foxconn International Holdings Ltd. (2038), the Chinese mobile- phone maker, is working with Amazon on the device, said one of the people, who asked not to be identified because the plans are private. Amazon is seeking to complement the smartphone strategy by acquiring patents that cover wireless technology and would help it defend against allegations of infringement, other people with knowledge of the matter said.'"
zacharye writes "Microsoft has a long and storied history of leadership in the tech industry, and the company has driven innovation for decades. In recent years, however, Microsoft has fallen behind the times in several key industries; the company's mobile position has deteriorated and left it with a low single-digit market share, and Microsoft won't launch Windows RT, its response to Apple's three-year-old iPad, until later this year. In a recent piece titled 'Microsoft’s Lost Decade,' Vanity Fair contributor Kurt Eichenwald analyzes the company’s 'astonishingly foolish management decisions' and picks apart moves made during the Steve Ballmer era."
redletterdave writes "It appears that Google is no longer alone in exploring the realm of wearable tech solutions. Apple was granted a patent on Thursday in relation to 'peripheral treatment for head-mounted displays.' While Google Glass places a piece of smartglass right above the user's eye, Apple's solution uses two peripheral lights to show two different images to each eye 'to create an enhanced viewing experience for the user.' Apple's patent also attempts to address the biggest problems with head-mounted displays (HMDs), particularly tunnel vision and motion sickness."
EliSowash writes "A new version of the MaControl malware has been reported in the wild. More information on the malware, its behavior, and the attack campaign is available from Kaspersky Labs, who discovered this variant. As more malware authors become motivated to attack OS X it is likely that we will continue to see targeted attacks such as this in the future. Just like with PC malware, a combination of exploits and social engineering tricks are generally the most effective; it won't be surprising to see a spike in such attacks soon."
Google is retiring the iGoogle page, but on a much shorter time scale, Apple is shutting down an iService of its own: the cloud-storage site iWork.com (linked to Apple's office apps suite iWork) is slated to go offline at the end of this month. Says the article, over at SlashCloud: "As of that date, 'you will no longer be able to access your documents on the iWork.com site or view them on the Web,' reads Apple’s note on the matter, followed by a recommendation that anyone with documents on iWork download them to the desktop." Both of these announcements remind me why I covet local storage for documents and the ability to set my own GUI prefs.
New submitter DavidGilbert99 writes "Security experts have discovered what is claimed to be the first ever piece of malware to be found in the Apple App Store. While Android is well known for malware, Apple has prided itself on being free from malicious apps ... until now. The app steals your contact data and uploads it to a remote server before sending spam SMS messages to all your contacts, but the messages look like they are coming from you."
An anonymous reader writes with this excerpt from Network World: "For months now, rumors of an iPad with a 7.85-inch screen have been circulating through the blogosphere. And though Steve Jobs once said that 7-inch tablets are 'dead on arrival,' the relative success of the Amazon Kindle Fire and other smaller tablets suggests that consumers are more than willing to accept a smaller screen size in exchange for a cheaper buy-in point. Indeed, you might remember that Apple CEO Tim Cook recently said that Apple saw a tremendous uptick in overall iPad sales once it lowered the price of the iPad 2 down to $399. That said, a chorus of credible reports over the past few days have all claimed that Apple is currently working on a slimmed down iPad and that it may be set for release as early as this Fall."
First time accepted submitter bargainsale writes "Many recent updates from Apple's App store are crashing immediately, including Instapaper. Instapaper's creator, Marco Arment, thinks this is due to corrupt binaries being distributed. As Angry Birds Space is among those affected, there is some hope that Apple may acknowledge the problem and fix it ..."
An anonymous reader writes "In a move that is likely to have wide-ranging implications for patent rulings around the world, a High Court Judge in the UK has ruled that HTC did not infringe on a number if Apple's patents. 'He said Apple's slide-to-unlock feature was an "obvious" development in the light of a similar function on an earlier Swedish handset.' Two other patents that Apple had claimed were infringed were ruled invalid, while a third was found not to apply to HTC. A statement from the Taiwanese firm said: 'HTC is pleased with the ruling, which provides further confirmation that Apple's claims against HTC are without merit. We remain disappointed that Apple continues to favour competition in the courtroom over competition in the marketplace.' Apple declined to comment on the specifics of the case. Instead it re-issued an earlier statement, saying: 'We think competition is healthy, but competitors should create their own original technology, not steal ours.'" This after a similar victory for HTC in a different venue, when Apple's request for an injunction on some HTC devices was rejected in the U.S.
another random user sends this quote from the BBC: "HTC is claiming victory in a patent dispute with Apple after a ruling by the High Court in London. The judge ruled that HTC had not infringed four technologies that Apple had claimed as its own. He said Apple's slide-to-unlock feature was an 'obvious' development in the light of a similar function on an earlier Swedish handset. Lawyers fighting other lawsuits against Apple are likely to pay close attention to the decision regarding its slide-to-unlock patent."
New submitter tukang writes "The US International Trade Commission has rejected an emergency request by Apple to detain some HTC phones (including the One X and EVO 4G) at the border while the agency investigates Apple's claims of patent infringement. In May, HTC's phone shipment was held up at the border and was only allowed to pass after U.S. Customs and Border Protection received assurances that HTC worked around Apple patents, a claim which Apple disputes."