HTC Looking To Strike Deal With Apple Regarding Patent Dispute

Apple vs. HTC

Over the past few weeks, a patent dispute had been going on between Apple and HTC. The judge found that HTC had indeed been infringing upon two of Apple’s patents, and initially has ruled in Apple’s favor. Today, Bloomberg reports that HTC is interested in striking a deal with Apple for the patent dispute between the companies. FOSS Patents points out that these two patent infringement could put Android in serious trouble.

We have to sit down and figure it out,Winston Yung, chief financial officer of the Taoyuan, Taiwan-based company, said by phone today. We’re open to having discussions.

HTC on July 6 announced a $300 million deal to buy S3 Graphics Co., less than a week after that company won an ITC ruling against Apple over two patents. In a July 15 initial determination, the same commission ruled in Apple’s favor on two other patents.

We are open to all sorts of solutions, as long as the solution and the terms are fair and reasonable,Yung said. On and off we’ve had discussions with Apple, even before the initial determination came out.

In addition, Bloomberg says that in a separate report the battle between Apple and Google has started to heat up. Apple’s contribution to a consortium of $2.6 billion towards the acquisition of Nortel’s patents outbid Google with a total of $4.5 billion. The report reveals that Google and Apple are both considering bidding for patents from the mobile technology company InterDigital. These patents may cost a 50% premium over its already high sale price.

InterDigital currently holds 8,800 patents related to wireless technology with 15% of them being rumored to being related to mobile phone technologies. Also, some of these patents haven’t been licensed to companies yet. According to analysts, these patents maybe worth more than Nortel’s 4G LTE patents sold to Apple’s consortium.

It will be in interesting to see how all these patents disputes turn out over the next few years. In conclusion, how could a company that claims to be innovating and not stealing be this desperate for patents?

HTC Puccini Images Leaked

Compared to the other Android device manufacturers like Motorola, Samsung and LG, HTC got into the tablet game rather late. Since HTC was the first company to launch an Android smartphone, I expected it to be the first, or at least one of the first companies to come out with an Android tablet as well.

However, they came out with the HTC Flyer much later than Samsung launched the Galaxy Tab, and almost all other companies had announced new Honeycomb tablets. The HTC Flyer didn’t exactly fly off the shelves, and saw dismal sales.

However, HTC is back with a new offering – the HTC Puccini. It’s a new Android tablet with a 10.1 inch capacitive touchscreen display, and it will run Android Honeycomb. It seems to have an 8 MP camera with a dual LED flash. It will also sport stereo speakers, a mic, and comes with stylus input support, like the HTC Flyer.

Though we don’t have many official details about the HTC Puccini, some rumors have suggested that it will come with a dual core 1.5 GHz processor, and 1 GB RAM. It will likely have a display resolution of 1280 x 800 pixels. It will come with the Sense UI and will offer 4G LTE connectivity as well.

Today, BGR has leaked some images of the soon to be released HTC Puccini. Check them out:

HTC Puccini

HTC Puccini

HTC Salsa Launched In China; Comes With Sina Weibo Button Instead Of Facebook

HTC Salsa is the company’s first smartphone, which comes with a dedicated Facebook button. This handset allows you to upload photos or update your status, within a single click. This handset has been recently launched in China. Since, Facebook was blocked in china and the Chinese users doesn’t care much about Facebook, HTC ditched the Facebook button and launched this handset in China with a dedicated Sina Weibo button. Sina Weibo is a popular social networking service in China, similar to the Twitter. HTC has also renamed the handset from HTC Salsa to HTC Weike.

“This is the first time for a handset company to cooperate with a Chinese Internet giant, and I think this could be a trend when the mobile Internet era catches on,” said, Ray Yam, China president of HTC Corp.

htc salsa china

HTC Weike features a 3.4 inch touchscreen display with 480 x 320 pixels resolution, 800 MHz processor, Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) Operating System, HTC Sense UI, Dedicated Sina Weibo button, 5 megapixel camera with autofocus and LED flash, VGA front camera, 512 MB ROM, 512 MB RAM and so on.

Other features include a 3.5 mm headset jack, internal GPS antenna, G-Sensor, Digital compass, Proximity Sensor, Bluetooth 3.0 with FTP/OPP, Wi-Fi connectivity, micro-USB, microSD card slot, up to 540 mins talk-time, up to 530 hours stand-by time and a 1520 mAh battery. This handset measures 109.1 x 58.9 x 12.3 mm and weighs 120 grams.

HTC Weike allows you to access more than 250,000 apps from the Android Market. This handset comes with a price tag of 3,380 yuan (approx. $520).

HTC ChaCha Launched In India For Rs.15,990

HTC recently launched its second Facebook phone, the HTC ChaCha at an event in Mumbai, India. This device was announced at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2011 in February. After waiting for more than 5 months, HTC finally released the device in the Indian market. HTC ChaCha comes with a dedicated Facebook button, which allows you to upload photos or add a status update on Facebook with the click of a button.

At HTC, we have always strived to take mobility experience to newer levels and add multi dimensions to our devices. Featuring a dedicated Facebook button and one-touch Facebook access, the HTC ChaCha aims to make it simpler and convenient for its users to share and connect through their favourite social networking site,said Faisal Siddiqui, Country Manager, HTC India. We are extremely pleased to launch the HTC ChaCha in India with Tata DOCOMO, and are positive that this social smartphone will garner a favorable response from Indian mobile phone users,he added.

htc chacha

HTC ChaCha comes with a 2.6 inch touchscreen display, 480 x 320 pixels resolution, 800 MHz MSM7227 processor, Dedicated Facebook button, Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) Operating System, HTC Sense 3.0, 5 megapixel camera with autofocus and LED flash, VGA front camera, 3.5 mm headset jack, 3G Connectivity, 512 MB ROM, 512 MB RAM, Bluetooth 3.0 with FTP/OPP, Wi-Fi connectivity, micro-USB, microSD card slot, 32 GB expandable memory, Internal GPS Antenna, up to 450 mins talk-time, up to 660 hours stand-by time and a 1250 mAh battery.

HTC ChaCha comes with a price tag of Rs.15,990, but you can get the device for around Rs.15,000. This handset is available in 3 vibrant colors – White, Purple and Black. Tata Docomo customers will also get free data as well as other benefits with this handset.

3G Customers:

  • 3 GB data with a validity of 90 days
  • 3 hours of Mobile TV service

(Tata Docomo 3G is available only in Maharashtra, Gujarat, Karnataka, Kerala, Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh (West), Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh circle.)

2G Customers:

  • 3 GB data with a validity of 90 days
  • 300 mins local Tata to Tata calling

(Free Tata to Tata minutes can be used to call Tata Docomo as well as Tata Indicom numbers)

Google on the HTC-Apple Lawsuit: “We Will Make Sure They Don’t Lose”

Apple has already won the initial ruling in its patent infringement lawsuit against HTC, which alleged that HTC had infringed upon two of its patents by using the Android OS in its devices.

With the HTC lawsuit almost won, Apple has a very good chance of winning similar lawsuits against other Android manufacturers, as most of them use the same features described in the lawsuit.

With this set of patents, Apple joins the exclusive club of those companies who stand to make billions in revenue from Android, which currently include Google, Microsoft and Oracle.

I also pointed out that Apple now had a chance to shut down the sale and import of all Android devices in the US, though it may have seemed a bit far fetched.

Today, at the Google Mobile Conference in Tokyo, Eric Schmidt said that his company will back HTC in its patent fight against Apple.

“We have seen an explosion of Android devices entering the market and, because of our successes, competitors are responding with lawsuits as they cannot respond through innovations,” he said. “I’m not too worried about this.”

He also commented that “We will make sure they don’t lose, then”, when asked whether Google will be providing financial assistance to HTC. He didn’t reveal any more details, about how it planned to defend its HTC and its other hardware partners.

Google doesn’t have nearly as many patents in its arsenal as Oracle, Microsoft or Apple. It recently lost the Nortel patent auctions, which could have doubled its patent portfolio and provided it with some much needed ammunition in its patent wars against Apple and Microsoft.

HTC’s Unlocked Bootloader Promise Coming To Fruition In Canada First

Back in the beginning of June, HTC declared some of their high-end devices would be receiving updates to unlock the bootloaders, the first round to include the T-Mobile Sensation and the Sprint Evo 3D. Well, it would seem that Canada is getting the first device to ship with an unlocked bootloader. Rogers Wireless, a national carrier in Canada, will have an exclusive launch of the Evo 3D in the coming months alongside the LG Optimus 3D.

A Rogers spokesperson has commented on their support site, Rogers RedBoard, indicating that the Evo 3D will be available “this summer” and will have an unlocked bootloader.

The Evo 3D was announced by HTC back in June, recently became available through carriers and was billed as the first “glasses-free 3D smartphone”.

HTC indicated that August would be the initial transition date for devices to receive updates in order to allow for users to flash their own firmware images (ROMs) that aren’t cryptographically signed. While Google explicitly allows (and partially encourages) their “Nexus” line of devices to be easily unlocked, generally, this voids the warranty of a device and should be left as an option to experienced developers and power users. Custom ROMs are the bread and butter of Android when it comes to customization and developing; they allow for much more control as to what software comes pre-installed, supported languages, as well as many performance and security updates that are rolled into a single package. Having more devices that can receive timely updates means more users will be purchasing hardware and putting money directly in HTC’s pocket.

Whether the software update will be available to existing Evo 3D users before Rogers customers have it in their hands is unknown, but a small victory for Android developers is imminent.

Via MobileSyrup

HTC Status Now Available At AT&T For $49.99

Last month, AT&T announced the HTC’s much-awaited Facebook phone, the HTC Status. This handset is the AT&T’s version of the HTC ChaCha smartphone, which was first showcased at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2011 in Barcelona. The HTC Status comes with a dedicated Facebook button and it is currently available for purchase, exclusively for AT&T customers in the US. If you are planning to buy this device, then check out the complete specs below.

htc status

HTC Status features a 2.6 inch touchscreen display with 480 x 320 pixels resolution, 800 MHz MSM7227 processor, Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) Operating System, HTC Sense 3.0, 3G Connectivity, 5 megapixel camera with autofocus and LED flash, VGA front camera and more.

Other features include a 3.5 mm headset jack, 512 MB ROM, 512 MB RAM, Bluetooth 3.0 with FTP/OPP, Wi-Fi connectivity, micro-USB, microSD card slot, 32 GB expandable memory, Internal GPS Antenna, up to 450 mins talk-time, up to 660 hours stand-by time and a 1250 mAh battery.

HTC Status is available only in White color with Silver accents. This handset comes with a price-tag of $49.99 with a 2 year service agreement and a $15/month data service. You can also buy this phone without any contract for $399.99. To buy this handset, head over to this page.

HTC Droid Incredible 2 Android 2.3 Gingerbread Update Rolling Out Now!

HTC and Verizon have started rolling out the Android 2.3 Gingerbread update for the Droid Incredible 2. The update carries the version number 2.18.605.4, and weighs in at around 116MB.

Droid_Incredible_2_Gingerbread_change_log

Apart from the bump in the Android version, the update also includes some much needed bug fixes and enhancements. There is a new download manager app on-board, along with toggles to GPS, Wi-Fi etc, in the notification bar. There is also a new dock’, along with a new wireless charging UI.

Some Gingerbread goodies which Incredible 2 owners can also enjoy post the update include better battery life, improved copy and paste functionality and improvements in the performance and stability of the handset. Incredible 2 owners should also expect an improvement in network reception post the update.

The update is already available for download from Verizon’s server. Incredible 2 owners can download the update by going to Settings-> About Phone > Software Updates, and selecting the Check for updates option.

It is ironic that the Droid Incredible 2 got its Gingerbread update, before Verizon’s first 4G LTE phone the HTC Thunderbolt. Hopefully, the Thunderbolt’s Gingerbread update should land in a few weeks!

HTC To Start Shipping Updates To Unlock Bootloaders From August

Listening to feedback from the homebrew and modding community, HTC decided not to lock the bootloaders on their phones. The policy announced by HTC CEO back in May makes it easy for users to tinker with their phones. For all the openness claims of Android, unlocked bootloaders are great news for the community.

In an update issued on their Facebook page, the company said that they will be shipping software updates for the HTC Sensation (worldwide) in August that would enable unlocking the bootloader. The company said, T-Mobile HTC Sensation 4G and Sprint EVO 3D will be getting the updates soon as well. According to the statement, devices should be capable of unlocking bootloaders by September and more devices will be supported as maintenance updates are released.

Recently in a statement to Ina Fried of AllThingsD, Bill Cox said that Microsoft is okay with enthusiasts porting Windows Phone 7 Mango to older devices (HTC HD2 in this case). With Windows Phone 7, Microsoft has reached out to the community realizing their importance in growth of the platform.

Htc Thunderbolt Gets a Software Update to Fix the Random Reboot Issue

HTC and Verizon have started rolling out a new software update for their first ever 4G LTE capable smartphone the Thunderbolt. No, this is not the Android 2.3 Gingerbread update, which Thunderbolt owners are expecting.

Instead, this OTA update is aimed at improving the 4G connectivity issues along with the random reboot issue, from which most of the Thunderbolt owners suffer. The OTA update carries the version number 1.70.605.0, and weighs in at 74MB.

Thunderbolt_Software_Update

Below is the official change-log of the update from Verizon :

  • Improved data connectivity.
  • Enhanced Call History view.
  • Reduced number of device power cycles and resets.
  • Improved Bluetooth ® Discovery Mode pop-up window.
  • View App Menu in tabbed layout.
  • People search function enabled.
  • Backup Assistant has been added to the All Apps menu.
  • Preloaded My Verizon, V CAST Music and V CAST Videos.
  • Desktop cradle App is now available, showing clock in landscape mode.
  • NY Times site has been added into the browser bookmarks.

HTC Thunderbolt owners can already download and install the update on their phone. To do so, go to Settings-> About Phone-> Software Update, and select the Check for updates option. The handset will then automatically download and install the update.