Smartphone legal battles are officially ridiculous, GetJar is the latest victim of Apple’s bullying [RANT]

It seem as though the smartphone wars have become a mess of legal battles, rather than who offers the best products. Unfortunately the wallets of attorneys’ will get fatter, while innovation suffers.
The latest case involves GetJar. Apple already went after Amazon for the use of the term “App Store,” and although they did not lose, their motion for a preliminary injunction to bar Amazon from using the term “App Store” was denied. The case won’t be decided until late 2012. Now Apple has decided to go after GetJar for the same thing and they have given them a Cease & Desist notice for using the term “App Store.” GetJar started distributing apps in 2005, which is before Apple’s app store was in existence.
GetJar’s response is “We are not going to take it.” GetJar does not feel this is about Apple vs GetJar because they are not competitors with Apple. No one can compete on iOS as it is a closed ecosystem. They re-direct Apple users to Apple’s App Store as a courtesy for free with nothing asked in return. GetJar traffic comes mainly from Android users, which is a hundred times larger. GetJar feels that they don’t discriminate against Apple users, but Apple discriminates against them.

The timing of this is also interesting. GetJar just finished a major PR campaign about bringing Cut The Rope to Android. This is a game that won the Apple Design Award and GetJar brought it to Android for free as an exclusive. Their positioning moved from Appsolutely Everything to Appsolutely FREE. It seems like Apple is ticked off that GetJar gave “Cut The Rope” away for free.
The most interesting thing is that Apple really does not have a leg to stand on here. In 2008, Apple tried to register “App Store” with the United States Patent and Trademark Office and was denied. They filed again and were given a “provisional” registration under the condition that no one opposed the registration. Shortly after that Microsoft, as well as others, opposed it. Furthermore, GetJar has been using the term “App Store” since early 2009 and now Apple decides to go after them?
I don’t know about any of you, but I am getting sick and tired of all these patent suits and legal issues. Apple has gone after Samsung for copying them, Amazon and GetJar for the term “App Store,” and a few manufacturers for multitouch. Microsoft is now demanding money from Android manufacturers like HTC, Samsung, and others. A week or so ago, Google lost a bid for Nortel patents to Apple, Microsoft, RIM, and others. Recently, Apple won a very broad patent on displays that will cause them to, no doubt, file claims with everyone and their brother. Can we just concentrate on making innovative products without all of this? Seriously, does Apple think they are going to shutdown Android? Does Microsoft think this is the way to gain market share?
All of this equals big profits for lawyers and a very big cost to the consumer. Even if one could argue that device costs will not be higher because of all these legal costs, you still have to question what it does to innovation? Imagine if all of this money was actually spent on R&D, we could have more improved technologies quicker. Why not just come out with a better product than your competitor? Hey Microsoft, you watched Apple and Google take over the market share while you did nothing innovative. Now that you want to re-enter the game, and instead of letting your product speak for itself, you think your competition should pay for the fact that you fell asleep at the wheel. What about you Apple? You make a great product and have a great following, not to mention huge profits. You aren’t disappearing anytime soon, so why do you feel the need to lower yourself like this? You point your finger at everyone and then you announce iOS 5, which has elements that are directly taken from Android. Should Google sue you for that?
Unfortunately, I fear this is only the tip of the iceberg, and the space that this post takes would be better served in writing about something innovative in Android development, rather than ridiculous legal wars that never end well.
[via getjar]




SOURCE : ANDROID HEADLINES