Apple patents being upheld will force industry toward innovation and differentiation. That’s a good thing. Patents not only protect the investments of innovators, they create incentives for the rest of the industry to innovate instead of copying the work of others. Apple’s win today reaffirms the importance of patents to the future of innovation. Today’s ruling is a clear message to the rest of the industry to get busy licensing or get busy innovating.
Patents are essential for the enormous investment needed to make innovative products like iPhones and iPads:
Patents are protected by over 200 years of US law and by Article 27(2) of the United Nation’s Universal Declaration on Human Rights. Patents grant exclusive rights in order to encourage companies like Apple to make the risky, long-term investments needed to invent, perfect, and market new innovations. The jury in Apple v. Samsung found that Samsung violated valid Apple patents on iOS, and we applaud the jury for deterring further violations of Apple’s federal civil rights.
On claims that Apple’s patents shelter it from competition:
Apple’s patents don’t shelter it from competition, they create incentives for the rest of the industry to innovate instead of copying. Apple has proven willing to license its patents to competitors like Microsoft and others, but it is not willing to let Samsung simply use Apple as its own R&D lab without paying anything for it.
On the ridiculous argument that Apple v Samsung is driving innovation:
In the world of smartphones and tablets, Apple’s only real competition is Apple. Anyone suggesting we need to let Samsung keep ripping off Apple’s designs to ensure Apple keeps innovating has no idea what is actually going on in the mobile industry. Each time Apple rolls out a new iPhone or iPad its chief competition is the previous iPhone or iPad. Because of rapid equipment upgrade cycle in the mobile industry, Apple needs to keep innovating regardless of what Samsung copies.