Samsung: battle with Apple "a loss" for innovation

Samsung Executive Vice President David Eun has told All Things D‘s Kara Swisher that the legal battles between his company and Apple have been “a loss” for innovation. He made the comments at the D: Dive Into Media conference on Monday. He did acknowledge that Samsung makes money off of every iPhone sold, but Eun wasn’t legally able to expand on his thoughts about lawsuits between the two companies around the globe as most are on-going. However, his views echo some tech pundit’s views that legal battles over patents hurt innovation. Others, of course, say patents spur innovation as companies are forced to come up with new ways of doing things.

Interested readers can view the interview here.

iTunes, iPhone accessory sales more lucrative than most smartphone vendors

Horace Dediu has created an eye-popping chart about just how big Apple’s iTunes revenues and iPhone accessory revenues have become. iTunes was once considered a “break even” business model for Apple, meaning that the company wasn’t too concerned about making a profit on iTunes sales but using the media sold through iTunes was a way to sell more iPhones. Likewise, Apple’s iPhone accessory business was modest compared to sales of Macs, iPhones, and iPads. However, when both businesses are taken into account, iTunes sales and iPhone accessory sales generate more revenue than all other smart phone manufacturers except for Samsung.

In the fourth quarter of 2012, Nokia — third-largest smart phone vendor — had almost US$5.4 billion in smartphone revenues. Sony had $4 billion, and RIM and LG had close $2.8 billion. Those are impressive numbers until you realize that revenues from Apple’s iTunes and iPhone accessory sales reached almost $6 billion combined. The reason these two businesses exist is now primarily as support ecosystems for the iPhone, which reinforces how huge the iPhone is for Apple — and how much “catch up” the others have to do.

New iOS app Winston is your Siri personal assitant for news

Winston is a new and ambitious product from Colorado-based startup, Reactor Labs. It’s a take on the Siri personal assistant idea that focuses on news instead of sending messages. At the heart of the app is Winston, a personable British butler that compiles a daily brief from your selected news sources and social network feeds.

When you launch Winston for the first time, you are prompted to connect to Twitter and Facebook as well as setup channels for your news. The app includes a handful of news sources that cover technology, headline news, sports, fashion and more.

Mac 101: Schedule event details in the event title with Calendar

More Mac 101, tips and tricks for novice Mac users.

Lets Say you’ve just got off the phone with a friend. You’ve arranged to meet later for coffee, but you don’t want to forget, so you go to Calendar on your Mac to schedule the event. You double click the date you’re going to meet, enter a title, like “Meet Martin for Coffee,” and hit return. The event has been created, but all the details still need to be populated. So you double click the event again, to open it, and enter further details, like time and location etc. Or do you?

WSJ: Apple will respond to Greenlight Capital lawsuit by Wednesday

The pace is picking up in the lawsuit filed against Apple by Greenlight Capital fund manager David Einhorn. The Wall Street Journal reports that 1 Infinite Loop will issue its response to the suit by this Wednesday, February 13, with Greenlight expected to follow up with its comments by Friday in the US Court for the Southern District of New York.

George Riley of O’Melveny & Myers, a longtime Apple attorney and close friend of Steve Jobs, will be arguing the case. Apple is eager to address the suit quickly, before its scheduled shareholder meeting on February 27. The suit is likely to be a top topic during the meeting, as it concerns the belief of Einhorn and other shareholders that Apple should share more of its earnings — particularly a more than $100 billion cash stockpile — with investors.

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