A win for Apple in Beijing as court overturns iPhone patent ruling

 Apple has bigger fish frying in the world of intellectual property. But it must be a relief that an IP court in Beijing has handed the smartphone pioneers a win. On Friday, the courts overturned a May 2016 ruling that said Apple had violated design patents of a small, and now defunct, Chinese company called Shenzhen Baili. The disputes were over the exterior design of the iPhone 6 and 6… Read More

China says Apple isn’t cloning a local phone maker

Did it seem ridiculous to you that Beijing officials ordered a ban on the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus over a dubious design patent claim? You're not the only one. A court has reversed the ban (which was suspended during a dispute process) and declared tha…

Chinese Court Overturns iPhone 6 Patent Ruling in Apple’s Favor

A Beijing court has overturned a 2016 ruling that Apple’s iPhone 6 violated a Chinese manufacturer’s patent, which saw intellectual property regulators attempt to bar sale of the phone in the country (via South China Morning Post).

Last June we reported that ailing company Shenzhen Baili filed a lawsuit against Apple claiming that the iPhone 6 violated the patent of its 100c smartphone. Shortly after the lawsuit was filed, the Beijing Intellectual Property Office ruled that the iPhone did infringe on Shenzhen’s patent rights, accusing Apple of having “copied” the exterior design of the 100c phone.



The Cupertino company was ordered to halt sales in Beijing completely, but an appeal at a regional patent tribunal was granted that allowed both the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus to remain on sale. Today’s news finally appears to have put an end to the legal dispute.

The court “quashes the decision of the bureau” and “recognises that Apple … has not infringed the design patent filed by the company Shenzhen Baili”, according to the verdict reported by the People’s Court Daily.

The Beijing court ruled that the features of the iPhone 6 “completely change[d] the effect of the entire product” and made both phones “easily distinguishable in the eyes of consumers”.

The decision is likely to be another nail in the coffin for Baili, which was reported to “barely exist” even at the time of its original victory in the intellectual property office. The company, along with its parent Digione, is no longer a competitor in the Chinese smartphone market and has since collapsed, blighted by mismanagement and public criticism of its products, which were seen as poor quality.

Apple’s lawyers will be relieved with today’s ruling, given that Apple has been on the losing side of Chinese intellectual property lawsuits in the past. In May 2016, an “iPhone” branded leather goods maker won a lawsuit filed by Apple, after the court ruled Xintong Tiandi had registered the word as a trademark in 2007, while Apple’s phones didn’t go on sale in China until 2009.

Tag: China

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Tencent leads $350M investment in Chinese photo/streaming app Kuaishou

 Earlier this month, we reported that China-based photo app firm Kuaishou is gearing up for an IPO in the U.S. later this year. Well the company, which also offers live-streaming video in its service, has stopped to refuel its tanks first after it raised $350 million in fresh funding led by Chinese internet giant Tencent. Tencent, Asia’s highest valued tech company, confirmed to… Read More

Tim Cook Hails China Investment, Says Apple ‘Here to Stay’

Apple CEO Tim Cook sat down for an interview with Chinese media outlet Caixin on Tuesday, in which he emphasized Apple’s ambitions in China and its long-term commitment to investment there.

Despite Apple’s need to see off competition in the country from the likes of Chinese mobile makers Oppo and Huawei, Cook took pains to explain that Apple isn’t simply in China to grab a piece of the market, but that it is actively working to create jobs and improve people’s standard of living in the country.

Tim Cook poses for a photo during his visit to Ofo

“We’re not just someone who’s here to access the market,” Cook told Caixin. “We’ve created almost 5 million jobs in China. I’m not sure there are too many companies, domestic or foreign, who can say that. … There’s deep roots here. I think very highly of the country and the people in it. We’re here to stay.”

As reported earlier this week, Cook has spent the last few days in China to celebrate the company’s announcement that it is building several research and development facilities in the region. On Wednesday he stopped in at Beijing-based bicycle sharing startup Ofo, which counts ride hailing company Didi Chuxing as one of its investors.

Apple surprised analysts last year when it bought a $1 billion stake in Didi, earning it a place on the company’s board. Speaking to Caixin, Cook said the investment in Didi was an exceptional case and not a general direction for Apple.

“We’ve never invested in a developer before, and yet we met Didi, and Didi was so impressive. One, we thought their management was so great, we thought their idea was great,” Cook said. “And we liked the holistic view, they were doing everything from taxi to the more-traditional private-car thing. There was a strategic alignment. They needed some funds to continue to grow. We really want them to be successful and be global.”

Cook kicked off his China visit with a wide-ranging talk on Saturday at the China Development Forum, where he underlined his support for globalization. When asked by Caixin about the subject, the Apple CEO said there were three groups of people he always kept in mind.

“My view on globalization is that you can think of three groups of people. There’s a group of people that globalization has helped tremendously. There’s a group that globalization did not help. There’s a group of people that globalization hurt,” Cook said. “Globalization has lifted hundreds of millions of people out of poverty. But I also recognize is that it did not help everyone.”

Commenting further on the recent political steps away from globalized investment, such as the protectionist policies of the Trump administration, Cook admitted it was important for policymakers to address the issues that have led to resentment by some, but said it would be a mistake to roll back the process of globalization.

“You want to keep this going because it’s great. But we must fix this,” Cook said. “I do think there are ways to address it. I don’t think it’s an impossible task. I hope the politicians will put their attention on fixing that problem. … I’m optimistic. We must be. There are so many good things in the world. We just have to make sure we focus on the thing to fix.”

Cook is likely to remain in the country until at least Friday, when Apple will launch its special edition red iPhone 7 and 7 Plus globally. Despite the missing (PRODUCT)RED branding in China, Cook told MacRumors that proceeds from sales of the red colorway iPhones will still go to help the fight against HIV/AIDS, which has been called a “looming epidemic” in the country.

Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

Tags: China, Tim Cook

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Tim Cook Confirms Apple Will Make Global Fund Donations From Sales of Red iPhone 7 in China

With the news earlier today that Apple has ditched the PRODUCT(RED) branding for the red iPhone 7 and 7 Plus in China, MacRumors reached out to CEO Tim Cook to find out if any of the proceeds on sales in the country would still be donated to charity in the fight against HIV/AIDS.

MacRumors’ question: We noticed the (PRODUCT)RED branding is missing from the new red iPhone 7 on the China Apple website. Will you be donating any of the proceeds from the phone’s China sales to the HIV/AIDs cause anyway?

Tim Cook’s response: We donate to the Global Fund on every iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus we sell in every country in the world.

Since the omission of the branding came to light, there’s been some speculation that recent changes in Chinese law prevent not-for-profit organizations from being involved in commercial advertising. Whatever the truth of the matter, it appears Apple will be upholding its (PRODUCT)RED charitable donations commitment with or without said branding.

Apple’s special edition red iPhone 7 models, due to be launched on Friday in more than 40 countries, are the first iPhones to join Apple’s (PRODUCT)RED line-up.

Apple said the new handset color was in recognition of more than 10 years of partnership between Apple and the charity (RED), offering customers a way to contribute to the Global Fund and “bring the world a step closer to an AIDS-free generation”.

Other Apple products in the (PRODUCT)RED range that are available all year round include the full iPod line of products, Beats Solo3 Wireless On-Ear Headphones, Beats Pill+ Portable Speaker, the iPhone 7 Smart Battery Case, and a range of accessories for iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch.

Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

Related Roundup: iPhone 7
Tags: China, Tim Cook, (PRODUCT)RED

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Tencent posts $21.9 billion in annual revenue, its highest growth since 2012

 Tencent may be more than a decade old but the Chinese internet giant continues to grow at pace after it posted its most significant jump in annual revenue for four years. The firm, best known for China’s dominant messaging app WeChat, announced total revenue of RMB 151.9 billion ($21.9 billion) for its fiscal 2016. That’s up 48 percent year, its biggest leap since 2012, when… Read More

Airbnb is doubling down on China

 Uber may have become the latest in a long line of Western tech firms to have failed in China, but fellow gig economy darling Airbnb is determined to succeed in the Middle Kingdom. Today, the company announced a new brand for its China-based business and the local launch of Trips, its travel services feature. Beyond those launches, the firm pledged to increase its local presence via plans to… Read More