Apple CEO Tim Cook previously said that he wants other companies to “invent their own stuff,” and that Apple shouldn’t be the “inventor for the world.” Google Senior Vice President and General Counsel Kent Walker seems to disagree with the statement and even went as far as writing a letter to the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee arguing that commercial inventions that impact “consumer welfare” should be just as important as technical patents. John Paczkowski of All Things D shared the following interpretation of Walker’s argument:
In other words, Google’s view is that just as there are patents that are standard essential, there are also patents that are commercially essential — patents that cover features that are so popular as to have become ubiquitous. The latter are just as ripe for abuse as the former, and withholding them is just as harmful to consumers and the competitive marketplace. Viewed through that lens, multitouch technology or slide-to-unlock might be treated the same way as an industry standard patent on, say, a smartphone radio.
The capabilities of an iPhone are categorically different from a conventional phone, and result from Apple’s ability to bring its traditional innovation in computing to the mobile market. Using an iPhone to take photos, manage a home-finance spreadsheet, play video games, or run countless other applications has nothing to do with standardized protocols. Apple spent billions in research and development to create the iPhone, and third party software developers have spent billions more to develop applications that run on it.
Source: All Things D