Audiobooks.com App For Android Lets You Listen To Unlimited Books On Your Smartphone, Gives You Another Reason To “Read” The Hunger Games
Audiobooks are loved by many— especially those of us who happen to have long commutes to and from work or school. While audiobooks aim to make things just a little easier for individuals on the go, the more traditional forms of audiobooks can be very expensive with an average price of $20 – $30 for each one. Fortunately, relief is at hand as the up and coming audiobook service Audiobooks.com has unveiled its new Android app which provides a unique interface for navigating the book library and controlling playback, while also giving users the ability to download up to two books at a time to listen offline– which may be helpful especially to those of you on those tightened data plans. Among the 15,000 available titles include The Hunger Games and Walter Isaacson’s Steve Jobs bio.
For those of you who are interested— the Audiobooks.com subscription will run you about $25 per month but again— you get unlimited access to its entire library of titles. So if you’re a Froyo 2.2+ user and have a hankering for some good books to
read listen to, be sure to grab the app today in the Play Store or by scanning the QR code below.
I wonder how many Judges in America get to a point in a case where they want to throw up their arms and yell “I’m sick of this!” Well it wasn’t as dramatic, but U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh, who is presiding over the Samsung vs. Apple case, has apparently grown weary of the quibbling attorneys and had asked them to meet in person yesterday (Sunday). Judge Koh reportedly said in her order yesterday “The Court is disappointed by the parties’ respective reports regarding their meet and confer efforts on final jury instructions. Lead trial counsel shall meet and confer in person today and file joint and disputed final jury instructions by Monday, August 13, 2012 at 8 a.m.”
This came after both Samsung and Apple reportedly blamed each other for impeding the jury instruction process. Late Friday, Apple filed a claim that “although [it] has tried diligently to advance the process, Samsung has stymied those efforts.” Samsung reportedly responded saying they had “agreed to more than twenty revised instructions proposed by Apple and is continuing to review Apple’s remaining disputed instructions for any common ground,” while Apple had “agreed to only two complete instructions drafted solely by Samsung.”
Are you shaking your head in disbelief yet? Well it doesn’t stop there as this is just one of many issues the two companies butted heads over. In addition, they argued over destroyed evidence and if the jury would hear disparaging comments made by the late Steve Jobs about Android. Judge Koh ruled the jury will hear no such comments.
Finally, Apple even tried to get the court to keep jurors from seeing the Samsung logo on TVs and such to avoid the impression that the court favored Samsung in any way. Is it just me or does this seem like a couple of children stuck in a “he did this” ”well shes did that!” “yeah but teacher, they were doing this.” I can’t imagine Judge Koh feeling anything less than a glorified babysitter at this point. “Come children, play nicely now.” Too bold? Maybe, I just want this to end and for Samsung to embarrass Apple, and I want Samsung to come out on top because their product truly is magnificent and better. Don’t believe me? Head down and pick up a Galaxy S III, then try to tell me otherwise.
Samsung says Apple could not have sold a single iPhone without the benefit of their patented technology
Next week Samsung and Apple go at it in the courts again. I know, what else is new? Anyways, the Wall Street Journal posted some excerpts from Samsung’s trial brief. Of course Samsung’s argument is that they didn’t copy Apple’s iPhone one bit and that they were working on the next generation of mobile phones in the Summer of 2006, months before the iPhone was announced. These designs were based on market trends for increased screen sizes. They certainly weren’t going to scrap everything and change just because of the iPhone.
As to patents, Samsung said, “Indeed, Apple, which sold its first iPhone nearly twenty years after Samsung started developing mobile phone technology, could not have sold a single iPhone without the benefit of Samsung‘s patented technology.” Hit the break for some of the highlights.
Samsung has been researching and developing mobile telecommunications technology since at least as early as 1991 and invented much of the technology for today‘s smartphones. Indeed, Apple, which sold its first iPhone nearly twenty years after Samsung started developing mobile phone technology, could not have sold a single iPhone without the benefit of Samsung‘s patented technology.
For good measure, Apple seeks to exclude Samsung from the market, based on its complaints that Samsung has used the very same public domain design concepts that Apple borrowed from other competitors, including Sony, to develop the iPhone. Apple‘s own internal documents show this. In February 2006, before the claimed iPhone design was conceived of, Apple executive Tony Fadell circulated a news article that contained an interview of a Sony designer to Steve Jobs, Jonathan Ive and others. In the article, the Sony designer discussed Sony portable electronic device designs that lacked “excessive ornamentation” such as buttons, fit in the hand, were “square with a screen” and had “corners [which] have been rounded out.”
Contrary to the image it has cultivated in the popular press, Apple has admitted in internal documents that its strength is not in developing new technologies first, but in successfully commercializing them. . . . Also contrary to Apple‘s accusations, Samsung does not need or want to copy; rather, it strives to best the competition by developing multiple, unique products. Samsung internal documents from 2006, well before the iPhone was announced, show rectangular phones with rounded corners, large displays, flat front faces, and graphic interfaces with icons with grid layouts.
Prior to the iPhone‘s announcement in January 2007, Samsung was already developing numerous products and models with the same design features that Apple now claims were copied from the iPhone. In the summer of 2006, Samsung began designing its next generation of mobile phones, based on the market trend of ever-increasing screen size. At that time, Samsung‘s designers envisioned a basic design: a simple, rounded rectangular body dominated by a display screen with a single physical button on the face.
As . . . documents confirm, Samsung independently developed the allegedly copied design features months before Apple had even announced the iPhone. It did not switch its design direction because of the iPhone.
Apple‘s utility patents relate to ancillary features that allow users to perform trivial touch screen functions, even though these technologies were developed and in widespread use well before Apple entered the mobile device market in 2007. Samsung does not infringe any of Apple‘s patents and has located dead-on prior art that invalidates them.
Apple relied heavily on Samsung‘s technology to enter the telecommunications space, and it continues to use Samsung‘s technology to this day in its iPhone and iPad products. For example, Samsung supplies the flash memory, main memory, and application processor for the iPhone. . . . But Apple also uses patented Samsung technology that it has not paid for. This includes standards-essential technology required for Apple‘s products to interact with products from other manufacturers, and several device features that Samsung developed for use in its products.
Long before Apple even announced any of its 3G products that use Samsung‘s standards-essential technology, Samsung had offered licenses for these patents (along with other patents) to virtually every major player in the mobile phone industry, successfully striking cross-licensing deals with all of them. After Apple released products that use the technology patented in the [two standards-essential patents at issue in the trial], Samsung similarly offered a cross-licensing deal to Apple, asking for a fair and reasonable royalty in return for Apple‘s use of Samsung‘s technology. Unlike all the major players in the mobile phone industry, however, Apple refused to enter a cross-licensing deal with Samsung.
Instead, despite the fact that virtually every other major industry participant was willing to take a license from Samsung for use of the standards-essential patents in this suit, Apple claimed that Samsung‘s patents are unenforceable.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you already know that Apple and Samsung, the largest electronics corporations in the world, are waging a legal war in several countries with complaints towards each other for patent violations as they battle for domination in the market for mobile devices.
Before Steve Jobs died last year, he made a few statements to his biographer about Apple’s intellectual property, saying he was willing to go “thermonuclear” to “destroy” Google’s operation system. So far, I think that’s backfired on them.
Seeking to introduce the statement in court, Samsung argued in a filing that the statements by Jobs “speaks to Apple’s bias, improper motives and its lack of belief in its own claims in that they are a means to an end, namely the destruction of Android.” However, Apple argued in a court filing that Jobs’ quotes are an unreasonable distraction, and asked that they be barred from trial.
At a hearing in a San Jose, California federal court that took place on Wednesday, U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh said Jobs’ statements were irrelevant. “I really don’t think this is a trial about Steve Jobs,” Judge Koh said.
Apple sued Samsung last year, claiming the South Korean company blatantly copies its designs for the iPhone and iPad. Samsung denied the accusations and decided to countersue. The trial of all of this madness is scheduled to begin on July 30. Apple has won the pretrial mandate against the Galaxy Tab 10.1 and the Galaxy Nexus phone already. Samsung is appealing both mandates
On Wednesday, Judge Koh ruled that the evidence about Apple’s operations in China could be discussed, but would not be looked at as a human rights violation. Evidence of Samsung’s taxes paid in the U.S. could be discussed too, Judge Koh ruled, but Apple would not be able to make any suggestions of tax avoidance from Samsung.
By now we’ve all heard what the late Steve Jobs had to say about Android. Specifically, these two quotes from Walter Isaacson’s Steve Jobs biography:
- “I will spend my last dying breath if I need to, and I will spend every penny of Apple’s $40 billion in the bank, to right this wrong.”
- “I’m going to destroy Android, because it’s a stolen product. I’m willing to go thermonuclear war on this.”
In the upcoming trial between Apple and Motorola over a series of alleged smartphone patent violations, Apple lawyers had requested that these quotes, and any others from his biography, be excluded from testimony. On Thursday, federal Judge Richard Posner refused Apple’s request without explanation.
On Friday, the judge had this to say:
“More broadly, I forbid Apple to insinuate to the jury that this case is a popularity contest and jurors should be predisposed to render a verdict for Apple if they like Apple products or the Apple company or admire Steve Jobs, or if they dislike Motorola or Google.”
In other words, Posner is essentially saying that Apple should not try to influence jurors based on sentimentality over the late Steve Jobs, his popularity, or Apple’s.
The trial begins June 11 in the U.S. District Court for Northern Illinois.
Apple and Samsung have battled and battled, and yes, battled in the courtroom for a while now. It would be nice if they called a truce. Now with Tim Cook in charge I guess it’s a possibility now as he doesn’t feel like going thermonuclear war on Android the same way Steve Jobs did. According to Foss Patents, the two smartphone giants are scheduled to meet on May 21 and 22 for mediation to settle this war once and for all. Nothing is guaranteed, but this is a start. I say lets end this war and get on with innovation.
source: foss patents
The Guardian thinks Google makes four times more from iOS. Where is the revenue generated from? Don’t forget Google is a search company and products such as that and Maps are used on Apple’s iPhone and iPad. Back in October, Google CEO Larry Page said that they were “seeing a huge positive revenue impact from mobile, which has grown 2.5 times in the last 12 months to a run rate of over $2.5bn.” Notice how he used the word, “mobile?” He didn’t say Android, but people automatically interpret it that way.
Asymco took this information and went a little further by charting it all out. Assuming $1 billion in mobile revenue in 2010 (from Larry’s comment of 2.5x for 2011), they put together the following chart:
They went a little further by breaking it out per device here:
So there you have it. I didn’t spend a lot of time trying to “shoot holes” in these figures, but I think it’s safe to assume that Apple is pretty important to Google. In fact Larry Page downplayed whatever hatred Steve Jobs had for Android. Whether he really did hate Android or not, I’m thinking Google definitely doesn’t hate Apple.
Bloomberg Businessweek’s Brad Stone sat down with Google CEO and co-founder Larry Page recently and discussed everything from Android to tablets to social networking. Oh yes, they also talked a little bit about Steve Jobs and Apple. Larry took over the Google reins when Eric Schmidt departed last year, and seems to be a man who is passionate about the technology he helps develop.
What we see, having these amazing devices in your pocket. Every time I get a new one, it’s like a kid on Christmas. I mean, it’s just totally—my life has changed. It’s kind of like the experience of first using the Internet or using a computer as you get these new phones.
When asked if there’s an Android tablet he’s happy with, he states:
I really like using my Samsung tablet. I previously used the Motorola Xoom for a while and liked that. I think that those are great experiences, but they’re going to get a lot better. I think that we’re at the pretty early stages of this.
The feud between Apple and Google over Android was a topic that yielded probably one of the most interesting quotes from Page.
I think the Android differences were actually for show… I think that served their interests. For a lot of companies, it’s useful for them to feel like they have an obvious competitor and to rally around that. I personally believe that it’s better to shoot higher. You don’t want to be looking at your competitors. You want to be looking at what’s possible and how to make the world better.
That’s an interesting way to look at it, and the fact that Page and Steve Jobs were on friendly terms may add some credence to that statement. But I question how much was for show and how much was real anger, especially on the part of Jobs as depicted in his biography by Walter Isaacson.
There’s more interesting tidbits in the interview. Hit the source link for the details.
According to Google’s Eric Schmidt, “Android is ahead of the iPhone now.” This was declared in front of an audience of tech enthusiasts and aspiring entrepreneurs at the LeWeb conference. The irony wasn’t lost when the audience in a room full of various Mac products, like the iPad, iPhone, and Mac Laptops, went silence, implying skepticism. Schmidt would go on to elaborate, “unit volume, Ice Cream Sandwich, the price is lower, there are more vendors.”
Android is successful but it was apparent where Android was lacking compared to iOS; being a top programming priority. An example of this includes Evernote announcing their new app called Hello, an app used for keeping track of folk, that is so far for iPhone users only. Another would be Flipboard, a news reader for iPad, was announced as expanding to the iPhone. Mike McCue, the Chief Executive, refused to say on if an Android Version was in the works. He only said, “We’ll see.”
Schmidt remains optimistic and thinks that the high volume of Android shipments will win out, thanks in part to Android 4.0 aka Ice Cream Sandwich. He was quoted to say:
“Ultimately, application vendors are driven by volume, and volume is favored by the open approach Google is taking. There are so many manufacturers working to deliver Android phones globally. Whether you like Android or not, you will support that platform, and maybe you’ll even deliver it first.”
In response to a frustrated Android-carrying audience member who was grumpy at seeing iOS apps beating out their Android Market counterparts he said.
“my prediction is that six months from now you’ll say the opposite.”
He continued by saying that there are roughly 200 million Android phones in use so far with 550,000 new activating them daily. He also brushed off criticism on Android being an iOS knock off, thanks Steve Jobs, by saying “Android was founded before the iPhone was.”
Even though the operating system is given away, its success is central to Google’s plans. The reason this is, is that it’s used as a mechanism for the company to push its services out into peoples’ hands. While search is a big proponent, these services include Google Apps, Gmail, Plus, Music and Maps. Schmidt’s thoughts on this were:
“All the interesting new applications are going to be some combination of social, mobile, and local. Social, local, mobile has been true for humans for at least 10,000 years, so I don’t think it’s going to go away any time soon.”
These features are heavily integrated in Ice Cream Sandwich, which in the long run will help Google.
“We started off thinking phones were computers. We forgot that they were about communication,” Schmidt said.
While we do still, yet, impatiently, wait for the release of Ice Cream Sandwich on the Galaxy Nexus in the United States, ICS will hopefully make Schmidt’s claims a reality or at least solidify them as fact.