Acer chairman JT Wang has accused Apple of starting a “patent war” but claims his company is ready and willing to fight, despite having watched as fellow Android OEMs have been hit hard by the Cupertino legal crusade. According to Wang, DigiTimes reports, Apple’s goal is “money or market influence” and that “any related losses” should be considered “as costs of doing business.”
Wang pointed to HTC’s ongoing battle in the courts with Apple, where the two companies each allege that their rival has infringed on various patented technologies. Most recently, HTC was judged by the ITC to have violated two of Apple’s patents, though the Taiwanese company protests otherwise and has promised to appeal against the judgement. Apple is also heavily involved in patent struggles with Samsung, claiming the Korean firm has copied the iOS and iPhone design language for its Galaxy range of phones and tablets.
According to the Acer chairman, patent trading is likely to become more common as the various players in the consumer electronics market shuffle their cards to balance increasing costs. Acer has, until now, kept a low profile in the legal spats, but with OEMs using Android being targeted not only Apple but Microsoft, it’s unlikely that will continue for much longer.
Google chairman Eric Schmidt recently accused Apple of jealousy and running short of innovations, suggesting those were the primary reasons behind the company’s recent litigation. Similarly, CEO Larry Page denied that the Android patent situation was critical in a recent interview. However, while Microsoft seems keen to squeeze licensing settlements out of companies – or encourage them to produce Windows Phones – Apple’s goal looks to be hamstringing Android altogether, miring the platform in a mess of patents and licensing that would slow its progress in the market.