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Apple lawsuits against Samsung, etc. are really against Google?

Well, that’s mildly passive aggressive of Steve Jobs, don’t you think? By now, you’ve surely heard about all the patent infringement lawsuits that Apple has launched against companies like Samsung, but it looks like the real target isn’t these manufacturers at all: it’s Google.

Think about that for a moment. Rather than going after the Googs directly, Apple is systematically approaching the various manufacturers that produce Android tablets. In addition to Samsung, Apple also has active legal battles with the likes of Motorola and HTC, among others, citing “slavish copying” of the Apple design.

Apple has already managed to block sales of the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia and the EU, for instance. Perhaps Apple’s legal team thinks that it’s easier going after specific products in specific markets, rather than launching a broad-sweeping battle against the entire Google Android operating system and ecosystem. One way to beat the competition is to prevent them from selling their products in the first place.

Android has already usurped iOS on the smartphone front and it’s steadily picking up pace with tablets too. In fact, projections have Android tablet sales skyrocketing to 230 million by 2015. Compare that to last year’s 20 million. By going after the manufacturers, Apple could charge them licensing fees to use Apple-esque features that are found in Android, making the latter OS less “free” to implement.

About Michael Kwan

A freelance writer and tech geek from Vancouver. Find me at michaelkwan.com and follow me on Twitter @michaelkwan.

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  • Anonymous

    It’s ironic that Apple tries to use some simple (and never should have been granted) design and gesture patents to stop their competition by withholding licensing, when Apple itself is totally dependent on others for their product.  

    Apple’s iPhone could not exist without the willingness of other companies to sell critical parts and/or license their far more major IP.  Nokia, Microsoft, among others such as the patent holder of Visual Voice Mail. 

    Imagine if they all withheld licenses and memory/LCDs/etc from Apple.

  • Anonymous

    It’s ironic that Apple tries to use some simple (and never should have been granted) design and gesture patents to stop their competition by withholding licensing, when Apple itself is totally dependent on others for their product.  

    Apple’s iPhone could not exist without the willingness of other companies to sell critical parts and/or license their far more major IP.  Nokia, Microsoft, among others such as the patent holder of Visual Voice Mail. 

    Imagine if they all withheld licenses and memory/LCDs/etc from Apple.