Apple recently denied allegations from the United States Justice Department that suggested it was the ringleader in a conspiracy to fix eBook prices. The trial isn’t set to start until next month, but AllThingsD posted a now-public document the DoJ plans to use as evidence when making its case. In the email from late Apple co-founder to News Corporation’s James Murdoch, Jobs writes that News Corp. should “throw in with Apple and see if we can all make a go of this to create a real mainstream e-books market at $12.99 and $14.99.” Apple stands accused of colluding with book publishers to stop eBook vendors like Amazon from selling titles at discounted prices. Apple is now the lone defendant in the price-fixing trial after the four book publishers originally indicted settled out of court with the DoJ. A copy of Jobs’s full email follows below. More →
Bill Gates and late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs are among a small group of people who helped shape the technology industry over the past 40 years and in a new interview conducted by 60 Minutes’ Charlie Rose, the former reflects on his final visit with the latter. Gates recently sat down with 60 Minutes to discuss his work at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and although it didn’t air in CBS’ broadcast, the conversation veered off topic for a few moments as the Microsoft co-founder got emotional while recounting his last visit with friend and rival Steve Jobs in May 2011. No spoilers here — the unaired footage from the Gates interview follows below. More →
Apple (AAPL) has struck a new deal to license patents from Access, according to a document published on the patent holding firm’s website. The IP covered in the small deal includes patents originally filed by Palm, Bell Communications Research and Geoworks. As 9to5Mac points out, former Apple CEO Steve Jobs once told then-Palm CEO Ed Colligan that the company’s patents were “not that great,” and that Apple had passed on an earlier opportunity to acquire them to protect the iPhone because they were basically worthless. To be fair though, the Apple-Access licensing deal is valued at 1 billion yen, or about $10 million USD, which is indeed practically nothing to a company with more than $140 billion in cash on hand.
Apple (AAPL) is expected to sit atop the consumer electronics industry for quite some time to come, but the company’s stock continues to take a beating as growth inevitably slows and margins are squeezed. The latest ding to Apple shares came as Needam & Co. analyst Charlie Wolf lowered his price target from $750 to $710, citing a slowdown in iPhone sales growth and a crunch on iPad margins in the coming 12 months. More →
When Apple (AAPL) CEO Tim Cook says that he hates patent litigation, he’s apparently not bluffing. In a long Reuters piece about the complicated relationship between Apple and rival Samsung (005930), unnamed sources claim that Cook was always opposed to suing Samsung but was overruled by then-CEO Steve Jobs. According to Reuters‘ sources, Cook was against filing patent suits against Samsung “largely because of that company’s critical role as a supplier of components for the iPhone and the iPad.” Given Cook’s role in building and managing Apple’s first-rate supply chain over the years, it makes sense that he’d be opposed to any strategy that could disrupt the company’s relationship with suppliers. Nonetheless, Apple has still followed through with Jobs’ plan for a “thermonuclear” war legal against Samsung and other Android vendors even after his passing in 2011. Reuters speculates, however, that given Apple’s lack of success in obtaining sales bans for Samsung devices that the two companies will reach a stalemate in the near future and that the patent wars between them will slowly wind down.
Late Apple (AAPL) CEO Steve Jobs was known for being insanely competitive, but this takes things to a whole new level. Reuters reports that documents unearthed in a civil suit against Apple, Google (GOOG) and Intel (INTC) show that Jobs once allegedly “threatened to file a patent lawsuit against Palm if that company’s chief executive didn’t agree to refrain from poaching Apple employees.” Former Palm CEO Edward Colligan, who described the feud with Jobs in a sworn statement, claims he told Jobs that such proposed collusion between the two companies was “likely illegal” and that he wasn’t intimidated by Jobs’ threats. Colligan provided his statement as part of a lawsuit filed by five tech industry employees who allege that major tech firms have engaged in a series of gentlemen’s agreements to not poach one another’s workers.
Just as Steve Jobs originally (and dubiously) thought “Bicycle” was a good name for the original Macintosh or “MacMan” for the first iMac, the late Apple (AAPL) CEO almost went with the name “Freedom” for its Web browser. Former retired Apple programmer Don Melton writes on his blog that other names on the table included “Alexander” and “iBrowse,” but in the end Jobs chose “Safari.“
Steve Jobs’ impact on Apple (AAPL) is still being felt more than a year after his passing. According to patents discovered by AppleInsider, Apple now owns the patent to the iPhone 4 and its external antenna design, iPad 2, Smart Cover, iPhone 4/4S Bumper, L-shaped MagSafe found on previous generation MacBooks. The patents are accredited to the late Jobs and Jonathan Ive, senior vice president of Industrial Design. As designers and artists, as Jobs liked to be called, both men were responsible for designing Apple’s most iconic products since Jobs returned to Apple in 1996.
Research in Motion (RIMM) CEO Thorsten Heins seems to have gone on a public relations binge ever since announcing the BlackBerry 10 launch event in January. The chief executive previously expressed his confidence in the company’s upcoming operating system, claiming it will be a hit with consumers and could even eliminate the need for a laptop computer. Heins’ confidence has reflected positively on shares of RIM with some analysts even moving to increase their price targets on the struggling company’s stock. He isn’t done talking yet, however. The executive revealed in an interview with Wired additional details about RIM’s recovery and his Steve Jobs inspired approach to leading a company. More →
Steve Jobs was famous for his product launch keynotes, so it’s not entirely surprising that screenwriter Aaron Sorkin has decided to make those product launches the center of his upcoming Jobs biopic. Speaking at Newsweek’s Hero Summit on Thursday, Sorkin said that the entire film would consist of three 30-minute scenes shot in real time that take place right before Apple (AAPL) product launches. Newsweek CEO Baba Shetty wrote on his Twitter account that the three products would be the original Mac, the NeXT Cube and the iPod. Regarding Jobs himself, Sorkin told the summit that he would be portrayed realistically since there’s “no point in writing about someone unless they’re flawed.”
Believe it or not, Steve Jobs and Apple (AAPL) weren’t always the schoolyard bullies of patents. In fact, the Cupertino-based company rarely patented any of its technologies prior to the iPhone. But following a $100 million lawsuit from Creative Technology in 2006 targeting its iPod MP3 player, however, Steve Jobs vowed to “patent it all,” according to a report from The New York Times. Jobs and Apple engineers would reportedly hold monthly “invention disclosure sessions,” where the team would describe what projects were being worked on and a lawyer would decide whether or not the projects could be patented. More →
I spent last night re-reading stories about Steve Jobs’ life and I realized why he was so different from most CEOs out there: For Jobs, making money was of secondary importance. Now, don’t get me wrong. Money was extremely important to Jobs as it is to all capitalists. Jobs, Tim Cook and company wouldn’t have spent years building up the most efficient production and distribution system in the world if they didn’t care about the bottom line. The issue is more that Jobs never wanted to make money for its own sake: He wanted to earn it by making the best and most original products the world had ever seen. More →
Legendary Apple (AAPL) CEO Steve Jobs passed away one year ago on Friday and current Apple chief Tim Cook decided to pay tribute to Jobs on Apple’s website with both a letter to Apple customers commemorating Jobs and a video tribute to Jobs’ life. In his letter Cook said that Apple was one of Jobs’ “greatest gifts” to the world and said that under his leadership “no company has ever inspired such creativity or set such high standards for itself.” Cook also said that Apple’s employees now “share a great privilege and responsibility of carrying his legacy into the future.” Apple’s video tribute to Jobs is posted below.