• Why Android Takes Forever to Get Cool Apps

    Reporter: Juan Modesto Rodriguez
    Published: viernes, 13 de diciembre de 2013
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    Some phonemakers are quietly exploring alternatives to the Android operating system implicated in the Samsung-Apple ruling, industry watchers say, despite their public pronouncements they are sticking with the technology.

    Some phonemakers are quietly exploring alternatives to the Android operating system implicated in the Samsung-Apple ruling, industry watchers say, despite their public pronouncements they are sticking with the technology.

    Last week, a US court ruled Samsung's Android devices were violating Apple patents - a major blow to the leading mobile software platform because it could lead to sales bans and high licensing fees.

    The impact could also hit smaller vendors that use Android like HTC, ZTE, and Sony. Android is used in more than two thirds of smart phones.

    Huawei, Sony, Lenovo and ZTE - which all use Android extensively - told Reuters they were continuing to bet on the Google's platform despite the ruling.

    "(The ruling) is not relevant to what we are doing," said Chris Edwards, chief of ZTE's business development in Europe.

    But as the mobile market matures and more patent cases look likely, some makers are looking at the alternatives.

    Samsung, which has used a number of platforms but now mostly uses Android, announced a new phone running on Microsoft's new Windows Phone 8 software at a consumer technology conference on Wednesday, sneaking ahead of a hotly-anticipated launch of a Nokia-Windows phone due next week.

    Shares in Nokia, which has partnered with Windows and is its main user, jumped after the Samsung ruling on expectations it might be a safer legal bet than Android makers.

    The California jury said Samsung infringed six of seven Apple patents in the case, including technology that recognizes whether one or two fingers are on the screen, the front surface of the phone and the design of screen icons, which is a clear reference to Google's technology.

    After the verdict, Google said that most of the patents involved "don't relate to the core Android operating system."

    Android was used in 68 percent of all smartphones sold last quarter, with Samsung making almost half of them, while Microsoft had 3 percent market share.

    The balance of power is unlikely to shift quickly as this season's new phones were all made before the ruling.

    Sony launched three Android phones this week at IFA, Europe's largest consumer electronics fair. Chinese phone maker Huawei launched four.
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    1. The California jury said Samsung infringed six of seven Apple patents in the case, including technology that recognizes whether one or two fingers are on the screen, the front surface of the phone and the design of screen icons, which is a clear reference to Google's technology.

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    2. Huawei, Sony, Lenovo and ZTE - which all use Android extensively - told Reuters they were continuing to bet on the Google's platform despite the ruling.

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