Apple's Legal Fees Rumored to Top $100M on HTC Patent Dispute Alone

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In his biography, Steve Jobs was so infuriated by Android's similarities to the iPhone that he swore to spend all the money Apple had in the bank to defeat the platform. Newsweek columnist Dan Lyons passes along a rumor that Apple has spent $100 million in legal fees on just its first set of claims against HTC.
Who knows if it's true, but if so, Apple didn't get a lot for its money.

[...]

[Against HTC,] Apple started out with 10 patents -- presumably its best ones -- and ended up with a tiny victory on just one. Was that worth $100 million?

Apple certainly can afford the legal fees, and shows no sign of letting up.

[...]

HTC has two claims pending against Apple with the ITC as well, the first one due for a decision next month and the second in April 2013. And then there are other claims, all over the world, against HTC, Samsung and Motorola.
But, Lyons notes, HTC, Samsung and Motorola are all countersuing Apple with their own patent claims and Apple already lost a major lawsuit to Nokia and had to pay the Finnish company not insignificant royalties its own patent infringement.

Apple has hired some of the best -- and most expensive -- patent litigators in the world and, after several years of legal wrangling (and many more to come), doesn't have much to show for it.

Lyons points out that whether the $100 million figure is accurate doesn't really matter. Apple and all the other cell makers are simply jockeying for position and trying to gain leverage for what is likely an inevitable legal settlement. "In that sense, whatever Apple is spending on legal fees is probably money well spent," notes Lyons.

Tomorrow, Apple will announce the most recent quarter's additions to its cash pile, which totaled more than $80 billion three months ago. Apple can easily afford many more years of massive legal bills.

Article Link: Apple's Legal Fees Rumored to Top $100M on HTC Patent Dispute Alone
 

mdriftmeyer

macrumors 68040
Feb 2, 2004
3,071
715
Pacific Northwest
Lyon's is full of it that Apple lost a significant case to Nokia. They settled and cross-licensed with each other. If Nokia felt their case was worth significant damage they would have not offered any terms of agreement to settle, never mind accept them.
 

pdjudd

macrumors 601
Jun 19, 2007
4,041
65
Plymouth, MN
Not to mention Apple stipulated in that case that they were already willing to pay standard licensing terms to Nokia anyway - the same amount that other vendors would. The case was over unfair licensing terms.
 

Oletros

macrumors 603
Jul 27, 2009
6,002
57
Premià de Mar
If Nokia felt their case was worth significant damage they would have not offered any terms of agreement to settle, never mind accept them.
Not to mention Apple stipulated in that case that they were already willing to pay standard licensing terms to Nokia anyway - the same amount that other vendors would. *The case was over unfair licensing terms.
You have to check better the facts, reality was just the contrary.

Apple didn't accept that the amount was set by a jury as Nokia asked them. Strange if they thought that the amount Nokia asked was unfair
 

Nebrie

macrumors 6502a
Jan 5, 2002
573
65
Isn't Lyons the one that has been going on crazy anti-Apple diatribes for the last 2 years?
 

rdowns

macrumors Penryn
Jul 11, 2003
27,400
12,410
Sigh, I remember a time when tripe like this would never make it to MR. Seriously, a story about Apple's $100M fees where the number is made up by a 'journalist' and the story quotes the 'journalist' saying 'whether the $100 million figure is accurate doesn't really matter'.
 

G4DP

macrumors 65816
Mar 28, 2007
1,451
3
Sigh, I remember a time when tripe like this would never make it to MR. Seriously, a story about Apple's $100M fees where the number is made up by a 'journalist' and the story quotes the 'journalist' saying 'whether the $100 million figure is accurate doesn't really matter'.
Half the stuff that ends up on the front page wouldn't have made page 2, when I started reading the site.
 

roasted

macrumors member
Dec 2, 2011
99
0
This money could have been donated to charity. Totally lame.
I hear ya. Apple really, really needs to stop being a patent troll. I can't help but to feel less-than-happy when using their gear simply because of how childish they act. They can do so much better if they'd just be a little more mature.
 

Gene Steinberg

macrumors member
Apr 24, 2007
33
0
Just stop with that stuff.
Read my lips: When it comes to sage comments and speculation, Dan Lyons, sometimes known as "The Fake Steve Jobs," is a fool!

You can quote me.

Peace,
Gene Steinberg
Host/Executive Producer,
The Tech Night Owl LIVE
 

SirChadwick

macrumors member
Sep 21, 2011
30
0
The first to innovate is not always the one to capitalize on the success. Just look at Kodak, they invented digital photography and are now bankrupt. A key to success has been the vision to use and apply innovation. If Apple’s competitors are allowed to steal ideas, the value in creating ideas is diminished.
 

Gene Steinberg

macrumors member
Apr 24, 2007
33
0
The first to innovate is not always the one to capitalize on the success. Just look at Kodak, they invented digital photography and are now bankrupt. A key to success has been the vision to use and apply innovation. If Apple’s competitors are allowed to steal ideas, the value in creating ideas is diminished.
Remember that Apple and Kodak partnered on the QuickTake cameras, perhaps the first digital cameras available for the mass market.

Apple is claiming ownership of those patents.

Peace,
Gene Steinberg
Host/Executive Producer
The Tech Nigth Owl LIVE
 

Gene Steinberg

macrumors member
Apr 24, 2007
33
0
Oh, what one could do with $100 million...
But like my signature says, i got 99 problems, being rich aint one :cool:
I'm sure they're spending loads of cash on legal cases. But I don't take anything Dan Lyons says seriously, and you folks shouldn't either. Check his track record and see if he does better than the fortune teller at your local carnival. :)

Peace,
Gene Steinberg
Host/Executive Producer,
The Tech Night Owl LIVE
 

dwd3885

macrumors 68020
Dec 10, 2004
2,106
90
Apple needs to stop using that money on ridiculous legal fees and use it for something good. Donate to a charity, give money back to your stockholders, heck, lower the prices of your phones and computers.
 

Gene Steinberg

macrumors member
Apr 24, 2007
33
0
Apple needs to stop using that money on ridiculous legal fees and use it for something good. Donate to a charity, give money back to your stockholders, heck, lower the prices of your phones and computers.
If Apple fails to protect their intellectual property in court, they in effect lose the right to do so. If you invented something that enriched your company, how would you feel if someone ripped you off?

What Apple spends on legal fees is likely chump change compared to the rest of their operating expenses. It won't materially impact their cash on hand.

Peace,
Gene Steinberg
Host/Executive Producer,
The Tech Night Owl LIVE
 

godknows

macrumors newbie
Apr 5, 2010
29
0
This is how Steve Jobs revolutionized the legal industry!
I have a lot of respect for Steve because he is a creative genius, but his insanely intense personality isn't working for him all the time.

Considering how much cash Apple has right now and how much it's wasting on these legal battles (and some on useless marketing) Apple should have slashed $100 off its devices. All those Android and PC manufacturers would have a hard time catching up on this pricing.
 

vant

macrumors 65816
Jul 1, 2009
1,231
1
Doesn't matter how much Apple spends.

The point is to make it harder on Android OEMs.

Every dollar Apple spends on legal fees ~= a dollar an OEM has to spend.

If I developed a technology that would eventually change the world, you bet your ass I will fight to the death to defend my IP.
 

applesith

macrumors 68030
Jun 11, 2007
2,659
1,070
Manhattan
100 million keeps

400 people on a $50,000/year salary for 5 years in the USA...

:eek:

Being unemployed (again) - this is how I'm thinking of this... :(
Apple has legal fees because they have to pay people to do the legal work. Using the legal services of a partnered law firm employees people at that company.

They aren't burning the money. They are spending it on labor.