Apple recently asked a court to put two pending lawsuits with Motorola Mobility on hold, FOSSPatents reported on Monday. Apple believes that Google’s planned $12.5 billion acquisition of Motorola Mobility has resulted in a forfeiture of Motorola’s patent litigation rights. “Apple should not have to face the threat of an injunction based on the claims of a party that now has no standing to bring those claims,” the company argued. Apple currently has 21 patents-in-suit against Motorola Mobility, FOSSPatents said, and the iPhone maker is worried the results of a potential court win against Motorola will be moot once Google finishes its acquisition. “Were Apple to prevail in this case it risks an attack on its victory on appeal by a third party, whether Google or another Android smartphone manufacturer, contending that the judgement should be overturned due to a lack of prudential standing,” Apple said. Google CEO Larry Page hopes the acquisition of Motorola Mobility will bolster Google’s patent portfolio and help it defend Android partners against Apple and Microsoft. More →
Reports of an iPad 2 sales freeze that may have gotten Best Buy in hot water with Apple emerged Thursday night, and the possible explanation given by someone claiming to work for Best Buy was odd at best. The anonymous whistleblower claimed that the retailer was holding iPad 2 inventory after having met its sales quota for the day. BGR has independently confirmed that retail employees of at least two Best Buy stores were told by managers not to sell iPad 2 inventory on Thursday afternoon. We have also obtained an internal communication delivered to all retail employees at a California Best Buy location on Thursday. The communication, which is claimed by our source to have been delivered by Best Buy management via SMS, instructs employees to hold all iPad inventory except for pre-orders. The message goes on to direct employees to misinform customers who inquire about the iPad 2, which could also be part of the reason the retailer is in hot water with Apple.
NewsFlash: ipads cannot be sold according to BBY. All ipads except for preorders MUST be held until further notice. Cant tell customers were holding them either
No explanation was offered to Best Buy employees by management, and employees in two different Best Buy locations stated that their Apple reps did not answer calls seeking clarification. Best Buy did not immediately respond to BGR’s request for comment.
UPDATE: Best Buy provided the following statement to BGR via email: “Best Buy continues to receive iPad 2 inventory from Apple on a regular basis. As we’ve said previously, we are fulfilling customer reservations first. Our stores have been asked to temporarily hold non-reserved iPad 2 inventory for an upcoming promotion. This is a customary practice for us when there are supply constraints. Best Buy enjoys a great partnership with Apple, and we’re delighted by customer response to iPad 2.” Best Buy did not address claims that retail staff is being instructed by management to misinform customers.
Among the more aggravating predicaments gadget fans often find themselves in are the scenarios where devices break or accounts get over-billed and phone calls to customer service must be made. The only sure way to make these situations even more aggravating, of course, is to navigate through a maze of key-presses and then sit on hold for 13 minutes before a call is finally connected. Thankfully, services like FastCustomer look to ease the tension a bit by waiting on hold in place of the user and then and connecting the call only once an operator has picked up the phone. Companies like Fonolo have been trying to tackle the same problem for quite some time, but no other service offers the simple UI and the smooth user experience FastCustomer affords — input the name of the company you want to reach, key in your phone number, then sit back while the magic happens. FastCustomer’s Web-based service is completely free for the time being, and it has an app in Apple’s App Store for $0.99. The company is also looking to connect with an Android developer to build a Google-friendly app, but no word on a time line. Hit the break for a video explaining how FastCustomer works. More →