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Device operating systems

OS Watch: The Samsung, Apple Copycat Controversy

The war of words between Samsung Corp. and Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) was taken to a new level this week, just one week before the U.S. patent trial for the companies gets underway.

Samsung's now claiming the iPhone maker ripped off designs -- not from it, but from Sony Corp. (NYSE: SNE) in building the smartphone. Samsung says a 2006 Business Week article on Sony design is what sparked the idea for the iPhone's look and feel. This argument wouldn't necessarily prove that Apple copied Sony; just that Samsung couldn't have ripped off Apple given its design wasn't original either.

In other mobile OS news:

  • Is HTC building a Facebook phone?: Rumors of a Facebook phone began to resurface this week. Sources tell Bloomberg that High Tech Computer Corp. (HTC) (Taiwan: 2498) is building the social networking giant a smartphone featuring a modified version of the Android OS to release in mid-2013. But Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg shot down the prospect on the company's first earnings call as a public company Thursday, noting that it wouldn't make sense for the company, and it would deeply integrate with other apps on top of its own.

  • Good and bad news for Microsoft: The bad news for Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) is that developers are losing interest in its Windows Phone OS in the enterprise, but the good news is that they're very interested in its Windows 8 OS for enterprise tablets, according to a survey conducted by IDC and Appcelerator Inc. . Only 6 percent of developers surveyed in the second quarter believe Windows Phone will win in the enterprise, where Apple continues to dominate, down 1 percent from the previous quarter. And, those saying they were "very interested" in the OS dropped to 25 percent, down from 37 percent in the previous quarter. However, 33 percent said they were very interested in Windows 8, "an objectively strong number for a device class that is not yet commercially available," IDC says. (See OS Watch: Nokia to Drive Up Windows 8 Prices and Microsoft Sets a Windows 8 Timeline.)

  • BlackBerry smiles for the camera: BlackBerry 's taking a cue from Facebook and paying a lot of attention to photography, updating its BlackBerry 10 OS to include an Instagram-like photo-editing experience. Crackberry reports that the new features are tightly integrated with technology it licenses from Scalado, which was recently acquired by Nokia Corp. (NYSE: NOK). (See Oh Snap! Facebook to Buy Instagram for $1B and Nokia Completes Scalado Acquisition.)

  • Sprint gives LTE a keyboard: Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S) announced its first Long Term Evolution (LTE) phone to pack in a qwerty keyboard and Android's Ice Cream Sandwich OS, the Motorola Photon Q. The enterprise-friendly device includes extra security features like remote wipe, PIN lock, data encryption and global roaming. (See Sprint Hunkers Down for Network Vision.)

    — Sarah Reedy, Senior Reporter, Light Reading Mobile

  • sarahthomas1011 12/5/2012 | 5:25:53 PM
    re: OS Watch: The Samsung, Apple Copycat Controversy

    The trial will sure be interesting. I don't see how you can decide one copied another when there's so much "evidence" both ways. Just "keep your eyes on your own papers" and proceed.

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