Apple’s Thermonuclear War in Mobile Patent Litigations [Chart]
These days, it seems like Apple is involved in just about every major lawsuit that hits the news. Whether they’re in defense mode or starting the litigation themselves, it seems that the Cupertino company is as drawn to the courtroom as they are to aluminum. The chart that has everyone talking today was produced by the Kanzatec IP Group, with the major takeaway being that Apple is tied to a whopping 60% of all major mobile patent suits.
So, how is it possible that Apple gets sucked into–or throws themselves into–more than half of these lawsuits? You’d think that an industry that includes such major players as Samsung, Sprint, Google, Comcast, HTC, and RIM would be awash in legal proceedings, and that’s true–but the thing is, most of them somehow wind their way back to Apple. Kanzatec explains that the reason for things shaking down like this is Apple’s unprecedented rise above the competition, as well as their much-publicized stockpile of cash. It’s impossible to be ignorant of their success, and so why not try and get a piece?
But that’s only half the story. Remember when Steve Jobs told Walter Isaacson he was “willing to go thermonuclear war on this”? He was referring to patent suits, and went as far as saying he’d spend the last panney of Apple’s $40 billion bank (at the time). That explains the injunctions Apple has won toward banning products from competitors like Samsung and Motorola on multiple continents, and it also goes a long way toward explaining how the company could get wrapped up in 60% of mobile lawsuit activity.
So now that you know who is suing whom, take a second and be grateful that you’re company isn’t the one at the center of the chart above. Imagine the headaches that go along with legal thermonuclear war!