Apple and Google are reportedly meeting secretly to discuss their patent war over Android and iOS, says Reuters. It should come as no surprise there’s movement between the two camps, now that Google’s ally Samsung lost its Android Galaxy patent war with Apple in a U.S. District Court recently.
The reported talks between Apple and Google may be one of the biggest pieces of tech news this year and could finally bring an end to this silly patent war.
Larry Page and Tim Cook reportedly had a conversation by phone, while officials from both companies have been in discussions as well. Although neither company will confirm, it appears that a meeting between the two CEOs is scheduled to take place over the next few weeks, and one topic on the agenda is said to be intellectual property (read: patents).
It’s not surprising that both Apple and Google want to end this patent war, despite Steve Jobs’s proclamation that he’d spend every penny of Apple’s fortune to destroy the Android ecosystem. (He believed Android was a stolen product.)
Google’s Market share to Lose
For Google, the stakes are high because it’s on the verge of releasing a new Android-based Galaxy Nexus phone (or more). They certainly don’t want any patent-related problems. Google is smarter than Samsung, I believe, and is unlikely to make similar mistakes in having a number of similarities between Apple’s mobile devices and its lineup.
Android has also clearly been embraced by a number of smartphone makers. And the way I see Android developing right now, it’s hard to say it’s the same thing with iOS.
Apple knows Google’s Galaxy Nexus phone is different from other phones. And rather than target Google directly, it’s going after smartphone makers using Android and targeting the software patents, which for some (including me) might sound silly. But in the U.S., anything is possible. Just ask Samsung.
- Exclusive: Google, Apple CEOs in secret patent talks [Reuters]
- Apple Patent Fight: Google in Cross Hairs [WSJ]