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  • Apple and Swiss Federal Railways Come to a Licensing Agreement Over Clock Design


    iOS 6ís iPad clock design looks very similar to the clock design owned by Swiss Federal Railways (SBB). The problem being that Apple never asked to use the design. In late September, the SBB made headlines all over the Internet stating that they would be getting together with Apple to discuss the matters.

    Itís not too often that Apple is on the cruddy end of the stick. Apple is usually the one that goes after other companies for using their designs and then demands large sums of money in compensation. In the less-common instances that Apple actually is the one being sued, Apple usually has a dirty habit of slipping out of the situation unscathed. Whatís interesting about this case is that Apple isnít being sued in court, instead the SBB only wanted to negotiate.

    Today, the SBB announces that both parties have agreed to licensing terms one-on-one and agreements have been signed. Apple will now pay the SBB to use the design, although The Verge reports that neither Apple nor the SBB have made public what amount of money Apple needs to shell out:

    Quote Originally Posted by SBB
    For the use of the SBB station clock on devices like iPad and iPhone, the Swiss Federal Railways SBB and Apple have agreed and signed a license agreement.
    The adoption of the design is not a bad thing; the Clock application on the iPad running iOS 6 looks great. It's sleek and offers a lot of detail, which Apple is known for. At is appears, the clock design on the iPad running iOS 6 wonít be going anywhere. Now if only Apple could give the iPhone and iPod touch the same gorgeous clock design treatmentÖ

    Sources: SBB (translated) via The Verge
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Apple and Swiss Federal Railways Come to a Licensing Agreement Over Clock Design started by Anthony Bouchard View original post
    Comments 20 Comments
    1. Sage I's Avatar
      Sage I -
      Hahaha... They got caught "borrowing" an image of a clock... That's classic... Nice of the railway company not to stoop to a lawsuit level, but negotiate a licensing deal instead... Maybe apple should try that route with their lawsuits...
    1. Mrteacup's Avatar
      Mrteacup -
      Quote Originally Posted by Sage I View Post
      Hahaha... They got caught "borrowing" an image of a clock... That's classic... Nice of the railway company not to stoop to a lawsuit level, but negotiate a licensing deal instead... Maybe apple should try that route with their lawsuits...
      They have. But i dont blame you on not be completely educated on apples lawsuits because i too get tempted to just skip all the 1000 articles on modmyi about the lawsuits which are mostly bias, however some are great at not being bias.

      I think the reason it didnt end in a law suit too is because they acknowledged the fact apple is a big tech giant and they would rather have a good relationship than a bad with them.
    1. Wyman's Avatar
      Wyman -
      Oops, somebody at Apple didn't do their homework right in checking whether the clock design was owned by somebody else; or alternatively, they did their job great - now all they have to do is pay some sum to use it.
    1. Silverado1987's Avatar
      Silverado1987 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Mrteacup View Post
      They have. But i dont blame you on not be completely educated on apples lawsuits because i too get tempted to just skip all the 1000 articles on modmyi about the lawsuits which are mostly bias, however some are great at not being bias.

      I think the reason it didnt end in a law suit too is because they acknowledged the fact apple is a big tech giant and they would rather have a good relationship than a bad with them.
      Agreed. If ya can't beat me join em
    1. rcm's Avatar
      rcm -
      next feature for ios 6.0.1, a new clock that won't be able to tell time correctly.
    1. Checksum47's Avatar
      Checksum47 -
      Maybe the swiss clock people should have sued Apple for 6 Billion dollars for copyright infringement. I mean Apple should know that they cant just go around making a clock that is round with a hour hand and a minute hand. I'm pretty sure that Swiss railway designed it and now holds the patent.
      If its good for the goose then its good for the gander...
    1. nebo1ss's Avatar
      nebo1ss -
      Quote Originally Posted by Checksum47 View Post
      Maybe the swiss clock people should have sued Apple for 6 Billion dollars for copyright infringement. I mean Apple should know that they cant just go around making a clock that is round with a hour hand and a minute hand. I'm pretty sure that Swiss railway designed it and now holds the patent.
      If its good for the goose then its good for the gander...
      Actually if you look at the original you will see it has nothing to do with the hour hand and the minute hand. It is the Clock background and the second hand with the little circle on it that are the offending issues.
    1. Orby's Avatar
      Orby -
      Quote Originally Posted by nebo1ss View Post
      Actually if you look at the original you will see it has nothing to do with the hour hand and the minute hand. It is the Clock background and the second hand with the little circle on it that are the offending issues.

      (Courtesy of The Verge)

      That looks like a total, blatant copy to me. Down to the minute and hour hands.

      Shame on y'all, Apple.
    1. gomezah's Avatar
      gomezah -
      Sbb was just boss mode they gathered the facts. Knocked on apples door and talked it over. I bet they had there lawyer ready to explain their case and how valid it was. Apple knew they were at fault so came to agreements with SBB. You know apple ain't afraid to take it to court I am sure they knew they ****** up. I say they got lucky Swiss just wanted a piece of the action and more in the future. What better way to do that then act like partners.

      Oh yeah apple clock designers getting fired.
    1. merismus's Avatar
      merismus -
      Quote Originally Posted by Mrteacup View Post
      They have. But i dont blame you on not be completely educated on apples lawsuits because i too get tempted to just skip all the 1000 articles on modmyi about the lawsuits which are mostly bias, however some are great at not being bias.

      I think the reason it didnt end in a law suit too is because they acknowledged the fact apple is a big tech giant and they would rather have a good relationship than a bad with them.
      It does still not change the fact that Apple was sneaky by copying the clock's design and agreed to a licensing agreement after being caught!!!

      Suing everybody claiming that their products are being copied!!! Apple are Hypocrites!!

      Dont think i am an anti apple person because i am not!!! But their backstabbing actions are just irritating!!
    1. Checksum47's Avatar
      Checksum47 -
      merismus, that is exactly the point I was trying to make. Apple are Hypocrites. They dont want anyone to make a smartphone that is rectangular because its their design. But they can copy someone elses clock down to the EXACT details and somehow they dont get sued for 6 billion dollars...
    1. LucasPukus69's Avatar
      LucasPukus69 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Checksum47 View Post
      Maybe the swiss clock people should have sued Apple for 6 Billion dollars for copyright infringement. I mean Apple should know that they cant just go around making a clock that is round with a hour hand and a minute hand. I'm pretty sure that Swiss railway designed it and now holds the patent.
      If its good for the goose then its good for the gander...
      OR....
      Apple could just say "No. We didnt copy it. What are you talking about??"
    1. bigbaba's Avatar
      bigbaba -
      Exactly what everyone said!!! SBB should have just filed a statement of claim and sued Apple exactly like how they sued Samsung!

      Not like Apple gave Samsung the chance to license any of their IP...wait a minute Apple did give Samsung the opportunity to license their infringing IP. Samsung just told Apple to stuff it.

      Judging by the comments so far everyone participating was too young to have seen the Galaxy S when it first came out. It was just as much a cheap copy of the 3GS as this new clock is. I remember a sales guy was boasting how they both look the exact same so might as well get the Galaxy S. Sure there have been a bunch of revisions now to Samsung's line since then but unfortunately lawsuits take years.
    1. LucasPukus69's Avatar
      LucasPukus69 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Checksum47 View Post
      merismus, that is exactly the point I was trying to make. Apple are Hypocrites. They dont want anyone to make a smartphone that is rectangular because its their design. But they can copy someone elses clock down to the EXACT details and somehow they dont get sued for 6 billion dollars...
      WOW!! 6 billion for one icon... So lets see... how many icons, ideas & designs did Samsung copy?? Well I guess given those figures, Apple can just stop selling their products & just live off what Samsung will owe them...
    1. mlee19841's Avatar
      mlee19841 -
      Quote Originally Posted by rcm View Post
      next feature for ios 6.0.1, a new clock that won't be able to tell time correctly.
      Lol. It's always 10:15




      Oh yea 73 degrees to.
    1. LucasPukus69's Avatar
      LucasPukus69 -
      The Samsung defence: Apple uses light black whereas the swiss clock is dark black. There is no swiss logo on the Apple icon & no silver rim... Other than the fact that they look exactly the same, they look TOTALLY different!!
    1. xLastWishx's Avatar
      xLastWishx -
      There are SO many ways to design a clock, Apple is at fault for this one. Still, I don't blame them - it's incredibly sexy and I'm glad they can sort things out unlike the whole Samsung vs Apple case.
    1. LucasPukus69's Avatar
      LucasPukus69 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Wyman View Post
      Oops, somebody at Apple didn't do their homework right in checking whether the clock design was owned by somebody else; or alternatively, they did their job great - now all they have to do is pay some sum to use it.
      UNLIKE Shamsung
    1. Silvio6's Avatar
      Silvio6 -
      The design was created in 1944 for the SBB. But since 1986 Mondaine company was given the exclusive right to use this design to create different products (wrist watches etc..).
      They were not mentioned in this agreement, i foresee a probability of a lawsuit .. Or another agreement. :-)
    1. quidam_brujah's Avatar
      quidam_brujah -
      Quote Originally Posted by Orby View Post

      (Courtesy of The Verge)

      That looks like a total, blatant copy to me. Down to the minute and hour hands.

      Shame on y'all, Apple.
      [SARCASM] Ppfft... Apple's individual minute markers are long and narrow, not short and fat -- totally different! [/SARCASM]

      Besides, how useful is a second hand with a big red ball on it other than being so inexact as just to show you that there are 'about so many seconds' to the next minute...