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Thread: Report Reveals Apple Paid $21 Million for Swiss Railway Clock Design

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  1. #1
    MMi Staff Writer Akshay Masand's Avatar
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    Default Report Reveals Apple Paid $21 Million for Swiss Railway Clock Design

    Apple's iOS 6 clock on the left and SBB clock design on the right

    A recently released report claims that Apple paid roughly $21 million to license the iconic clock-face used in its most recent iOS 6 mobile operating system, which is a design made famous by the Swiss Federal Railway’s train station clocks.

    For those of you who didn’t know, the original clock-face was designed by SBB employee Hans Hilfiker in 1944. The design was later recognized by the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the London Design Museum as an iconic example of 20th century design.

    It was previously reported that the SBB found Apple’s use of the design objectionable and said the two companies would “talk about” reaching some sort of agreement. The Swiss rail service denied reports of demanding compensation and instead said it was proud that a company such as Apple chose to use the design. According to SBB spokeswoman Patricia Claivaz, "it's not just about exchanging money, rather drawing up a contract stating where the logo can be used, under what conditions and for how long.” Shortly after, it was announced that the two parties reached an agreement, though the terms of the deal were meant to be kept secret with the recent report ended up revealing the actual price paid.

    It’s quite amazing to see how much value the icon itself has and how much Apple was willing to pay for it.

    Source: CNET

    Twitter: @AkshayMasand

  2. #2
    What's Jailbreak? 0055's Avatar
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    Apple makes awesome products but I don't understand why they couldn't just come up with their own design and save 21 mil...

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    Livin the iPhone Life KraXik's Avatar
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    Too much. Just change the design. I bet Ive could make one during his lunch break. At least it's one less court case...

  4. #4
    Green Apple
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    Are they using the actual same design now, technically? Like the weights of the lines etc. Or is it their interpretation of the Swiss design?
    If its the actual Swiss design then I can see why they paid so much for it. It's a design classic, a piece of modern art, hence the price.
    You could say why would someone pay millions for a painting when they can pay an artist a few hundred bucks to paint a copy?

  5. #5
    iPhone? More like MyPhone
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    Quote Originally Posted by 0055 View Post
    Apple makes awesome products but I don't understand why they couldn't just come up with their own design and save 21 mil...
    21mil to Apple is like 50 cents to you and I

  6. #6
    Green Apple
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    It is a very elegant clock, although at the end of the day it's only pixels.,.

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    My iPhone is a Part of Me luvmytj's Avatar
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    Where is this used? I am looking at an iPhone 5 running iOS6 and it has a different clock face.

    Anyways, what a waste. A 3rd grader could of come up with that. Why not just make the round ball on the sweep hand an Apple? Send me 21mil and I'll make you a sweet azz clock face for iOS 7...
    Last edited by luvmytj; 11-11-2012 at 11:32 AM.

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    iPhone? More like MyPhone Tucnepo's Avatar
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    After I restore from my backup, I still have the old classic clock I have a iPhone 5 on iOS 6.0.1 btw, anyone else has the same problem???

  9. #9
    Green Apple
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    For a clock?

  10. #10
    Livin the iPhone Life
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wolftamer View Post
    21mil to Apple is like 50 cents to you and I
    Still 21 million, if apple thought like that they wouldnt be this valuable..

    however it is swiss brand studies show swiss concepts/designs appeal more and i personally like them more. They do have a reputation we all know

  11. #11
    iPhoneaholic scroogelives's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by luvmytj View Post
    Where is this used? I am looking at an iPhone 5 running iOS6 and it has a different clock face.

    Anyways, what a waste. A 3rd grader could of come up with that. Why not just make the round ball on the sweep hand an Apple? Send me 21mil and I'll make you a sweet azz clock face for iOS 7...
    It's on iPads

  12. #12
    Super Sweet Moderator thetoothfairy's Avatar
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    Quite a bit of money for the clock! I feel it is tasteful however Apple could have did better!

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    Livin the iPhone Life bigboyz's Avatar
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    Still a bit of a waste in my opinion. I know they are worth billions and its like pennies to them. At the same time that's a lot of cash for a clock of all things.

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    Livin the iPhone Life steve-z17's Avatar
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    Way too much $$ for a clock design! You'd think Jony Ive could have come up with something pretty awesome instead of forking 21 mill over!

  15. #15
    What's Jailbreak? thazsar's Avatar
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    I need to start making clock face designs...

  16. #16
    What's Jailbreak? kawasabi's Avatar
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    21 million could buy a lot of food for hungry people...
    Last edited by kawasabi; 11-12-2012 at 06:39 AM.

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    Livin the iPhone Life Dark_Ninja's Avatar
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    I'm sure Apple "Innovated" that clock face too huh? Cuz aren't they the maker of all things? Including shapes, obviously!

    http://www.vicrosdesigns.net/imgs/DNsigv3.png

  18. #18
    What's Jailbreak? thazsar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dark_Ninja View Post
    I'm sure Apple "Innovated" that clock face too huh? Cuz aren't they the maker of all things? Including shapes, obviously!
    But, of course!!! LOL!

    Apple could rewrite history if they felt like it!

  19. #19
    Livin the iPhone Life Dark_Ninja's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thazsar View Post
    But, of course!!! LOL!

    Apple could rewrite history if they felt like it!
    Haha ur so right!

    http://www.vicrosdesigns.net/imgs/DNsigv3.png

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by steve-z17 View Post
    Way too much $$ for a clock design! You'd think Jony Ive could have come up with something pretty awesome instead of forking 21 mill over!
    Everyone is Captain Hindsight. Of course 21 million is too much. But it’s not like they were shopping for a clock face and saw this one and said “hey 21million that sounds like a good deal… I’ll take it”. The complaint came after apple stole/”borrowed” the design. Oversight I guess? Someone Googling clock faces, sees this one and says “hey, that’s pretty sweet”, and used it without checking if someone owned the design? That’s just my guess. I don’t know how it went down.
    I’m figuring they would have been sued. 21 million was the settlement. Both parties win no court case., and Apple doesn’t look like a total douche for stealing a design when they are in lawsuits of their own for people copying their designs.

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