AAPL Stock: 117.81 ( -0.22 )

Printed from

Cook says patent system broken, lawsuits have 'gotten crazy'

updated 11:22 pm EDT, Tue May 29, 2012

Competitors accused of suing over standards patents

Speaking to attendees at All Things D's D10 conference, Apple CEO Tim Cook answered several questions regarding the ongoing patent wars that the company has become involved in. When asked if the legal battles are a "problem for innovation," the executive bluntly stated "Well it is a pain in the ass." He likened the situation to Apple painting a piece of art and then someone else coming along and signing their own name to it.

"From our point of view, it is important for Apple not be the developer for the world," Cook added. "We just want other people to invent their own stuff."

Kara Swisher pointed out that Apple is the defendant in a number of lawsuits, not just a plaintiff. Cook suggests there is an important difference, as "the vast majority" of lawsuits filed by competitors are simply attempts to exploit "standards-essential patents."

"This is an area where the patent system is broken today," Cook said. "No one should be able to get an injunction off a standards-essential patent."

The CEO argues that Apple has never sued a competitor over a standards-essential patent, as it feels that such strategies are "fundamentally wrong."

"The problem in this industry is that if you add up what everyone says their standards-essential patents are worth, no one would be in the phone business," Cook added. "It's maddening. It's a waste. It's a time suck."

The comments echo similar feelings voiced by the late Steve Jobs, who viewed Android as a "stolen" mobile operating system and said the company was willing to "go thermonuclear" to defend its intellectual property rights. Cook suggests that ongoing litigation is "not going to stop us," but it does add to company overhead.

by MacNN Staff



    Comment buried. Show
  1. wrenchy

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Patent System Broken?? Crazy Lawsuits??

    Pot, meet kettle.

    >> who viewed Android as a "Stolen" mobile operating system.

    Not according to the courts.
    macnn, are you quoting that troll Florian Mueller again?

    >>willing to "go thermonuclear"

    Oh please. Shut your cake hole Stevie-boi.

Login Here

Not a member of the MacNN forums? Register now for free.


Network Headlines

Follow us on Facebook


Most Popular


Recent Reviews

Ultimate Ears Megaboom Bluetooth Speaker

Ultimate Ears (now owned by Logitech) has found great success in the marketplace with its "Boom" series of Bluetooth speakers, a mod ...

Kinivo URBN Premium Bluetooth Headphones

We love music, and we're willing to bet that you do, too. If you're like us, you probably spend a good portion of your time wearing ...

Jamstik+ MIDI Controller

For a long time the MIDI world has been dominated by keyboard-inspired controllers. Times are changing however, and we are slowly star ...


Most Commented