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December 2014

To our Fans Around the Globe, Happy New Year!

1. HAPPY NEW YEAR 2015 FROM PATENTLY APPLE

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Apple Faces New Class Action over False iDevice Storage Capacities

1AF COVER CLASS ACTION LAWSUIT AGAINST APPLE
Floridians by the name of Paul Orshan and Christopher Endara have filed a class action lawsuit against Apple for storage capacity misrepresentations and omissions relating to Apple's iOS 8. According to the filing, "iOS 8 uses an unexpectedly large percentage of the storage capacity on 8 GB and 16 GB iPhones, iPads and iPods." While this is an annoyance lawsuit, it's an industry practice that should end – and Apple should lead the way.

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T-Mobile's CEO Continues his Un-Carrier War Cry and States that it's the Apple Watch that will Take Wearables Mainstream

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T-Mobile's CEO John Legere didn't mince his words about the fabled Bendgate back in October. To him it was all a bunch of Horse sh*t, to mark his words. He's definitely outspoken and an in-your- face type of CEO. Today Legere is stepping up his war cry by calling 2015 as he sees it. He steps on his competitors while talking a little about Apple in between punches.

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Looking Back at Steve Ballmer, Microsoft's Former CEO and Mad Salesman through the Lens of a 60 Second Video Clip & Beyond

10PX. Patently Xtra
Microsoft's former CEO Steve Ballmer officially retired earlier this year and so as the year closes out, I thought it would be fun to show you a video that I discovered earlier today on CNNMoney that had me laughing looking back at Ballmer the mad salesman. It shows us his glory days as an enthusiastic young man ranting like a crazed used-car salesman. Off course it made him a billionaire and so he gets the last laugh in the end. But who doesn't want to see a virtual pie thrown at someone's face for being a never ending pain in our side for the longest of time. So on that note, enjoy the video below.

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Samsung Preparing to Roll Out the World's First All-In-One PC with a 27 inch Curved Display in Q1 2015

10. News
In a report covering Apple's Q4 (calendar Q3) financial conference we noted that Apple had added some color to their initial press release wherein Apple's CEO Tim Cook stated that for Macs, it was a "blowout" quarter and that "it doesn't get better than that" at 21% growth year over year. That news was like waiving bananas in front of a hungry monkey and just too hard for Samsung to resist chasing. Over the weekend, Samsung's executive core held a 13 hour crisis management marathon meeting to find a way to get their company back to profitability. One of the products that they hope will sell well in 2015 is a new all-in-one PC with a 27" curved display.

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TSMC Likely to Retain the Bulk of Apple's Chip Business in 2015 due to GlobalFoundries 14nm Tooling Delays

10A News - Rumor
In November we posted a report titled "Did Apple Really Sign a Deal with Samsung for 80% of their 14nm Processors?" While everyone in the press was quick to claim that Samsung won back Apple's A9 business for 2015, we were skeptical of the story and now there's more data that has surfaced that just might throw cold water on that rumor. Report Update Dec 31 8:30 am

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Apple Granted 35 Patents Today Covering Magic Trackpad, Embedded Force Measurements, Location Tracking & More

1 cover - granted patent report dec 30 2014

The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 35 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today, the last publishing day for 2014. In this particular report we briefly cover three of Apple's granted patents. The first relates to input transitions that are used on Apple's Magic Trackpad. The second patent covers embedded force measurements for use on iDevice displays and the third patent relates to location tracking and recording on iDevices. We wrap up this week's granted patent report with our traditional listing of the remaining granted patents that were issued to Apple today.

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Apple Granted a Patent for an iPen that also Works with Paper

1AF APPLE COVER, IPEN GRANTED PATENT
On the last patent day for 2014, the US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 35 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In this particular report we cover one of Apple's unique digital pen inventions. This pen invention will allow a user to write on paper and have their notes simultaneously transfer to an iDevice like an iPhone or iPad. Apple's invention also smartly presents a built-in dock for the pen that would appear to be held in place via magnetics. Besides granted patents, Apple filed for ten new iPen patents in 2014.

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A New Study Shows that Apple Gained 51% of New Device Activations Worldwide During the Peak Holiday Season

10. News
Over the weekend we posted a report titled "Samsung's iPhone 5 Clones failed to make a Dent against Apple." Their cloner attack on the iPhone 5 with their Galaxy Alpha line-up failed to steal iPhone users to their camp or even generate enthusiasm from their own Android camp. On top of that, the Korean Times reported earlier today that Samsung held a 13 hour marathon "crisis management" meeting today to find a way out of their negative profit nightmare. And if that wasn't enough, a new published study from Flurry (a Yahoo! company) delivers another punishing blow to Samsung that knocks them to the mat for a ten count for 2014.

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Britain's Top Banks are Leerily Negotiating for Apple Pay Service

1AF 3 PATENTLY APPLE, UK BANKS ...
The UK's Guardian is reporting that Britain's top banks are in talks with Apple to introduce its iPhone "wave and pay" service, Apple Pay, to Main Street in the first half of 2015. The interesting aspect of this story is that the banks are uncomfortable with Apple's quest for information on clients.

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Samsung is excited about Air Purifier Sales and Looks forward to Copying Apple's HomeKit Vision at CES 2015

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With Samsung's mobile sales depressed and mobile profits falling off a cliff, one of Samsung's only shining stars in 2014 was their air purifiers that experienced 300% growth. What happened to the mobile industry's "King of volume" smartphones? Now that 2015 is just around the corner, Samsung has now found a newly discovered vision about home automation and we're going to hear all about it at CES 2015. 

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Samsung's iPhone 5 Clones Failed to make a Dent against Apple

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On Christmas Eve we reported that Apple's 5.5 inch iPhone 6 Plus and the 4.7 inch iPhone 6 in both 16 and 64GB models took 4 out of the top 5 smartphone spots in Taiwan for November. The stats also showed us that Samsung only had a single model on that list, the Galaxy Note 4. The stats clearly showed us that phablets took three out of the top five smartphones and, more importantly perhaps, is that Samsung's S5 failed to crack the top 10 and their all-new metal trimmed iPhone 5 copycat models known as the Galaxy Alpha, the Galaxy A3 and A5 all failed to crack the top 10. A new Korean report published late yesterday told us that Samsung's iPhone 5 clones will now drop out of the premium phone market as their goal of challenging the iPhone failed to materialize in any way, shape or form.

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Apple's Esthetic Police have invented a Method to Camouflage Apertures in Future iDevices and Beyond

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Apple's esthetic police headed by Jonathan Ive have been hard at work inventing ways to kill off device housing apertures for good. Apple has been thinking of killing off iDevice speaker grills by having sound carry through specialized cover glass. They're switching to the audio connector working with the Lightning port to kill off the standard audio jack aperture. And now Apple wants to add to their collection of aperture killing methods by having light transmissive fillers fill holes when not in use so as to appear as if they're not really there. Do you think that Apple's idea is just a little farfetched? If you do, then think again, because Apple's current wireless keyboard for the iMac already uses this invention. In a way this would make it a patent fulfilled, though Apple's invention talks about taking this idea further to other devices. After checking out my iMac's keyboard indicator light when off and on, I was rather surprised at just how well this invention really works.

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Apple Invents a Highly Advanced Air-Gesturing System for Future iDevices and Beyond

1AF COVER TOUCHLESS GESTURING SYSTEM PATENT, APPLE DEC 2014
Earlier today we posted a report titled "Apple Patent Reveals a 3D Zoom-Based Gesture User Interface." That particular patent application stemmed from Apple's acquisition of PrimeSense, the company whose technology was used in Microsoft's Kinect. To show you that Apple is serious about air-gesturing, another patent application has surfaced today that has nothing to do with PrimeSense's technology and yet shares the same vision. This time air-gesturing is being considered and aimed at iDevices, Macs and for use at the Apple Store. The air-gesturing system is also recognized in Apple's patent filings as a touchless gesturing system. In the big picture, Apple's touchless gesturing system is quite extensive. Apple's research that was revealed today shows us that air gesturing may be coming to a future version of Apple TV, iDevices like the iPhone and iPad all the way through to Macs and beyond. Who do we thank for this cool patent application today – Apple or Santa? Either way it's a nice surprise.

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Apple Patent Reveals a 3D Zoom-Based Gesture User Interface

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On Christmas day 2014 the U.S. Patent and Trademark office reveals one of PrimeSense's key technologies relating to a 3D sensing device that is operated using a unique in-air gesturing system and user interface. The technology found its way into Microsoft's Kinect. The system could one day find its way into Apple TV and future Macs.

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Patently Apple Wishes you a Merry Christmas & Happy New Year

2AF MERRY CHRISTMAS 2014

Patently Apple would like to wish all of our fans, friends and industry colleagues from around the globe a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

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Sony's Movie "The Interview" Available later Today on Apple TV

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Sony Pictures Entertainment officially announced that the movie "The Interview" will be available online across the United States starting today, Christmas Eve. According to Sony's press release, Apple fans will be able to access the movie on their Apple TV box available via youtube.com/movies. The reasoning for Apple not directly participating via iTunes is unknown at this time. Sony specifically thanked Google and Microsoft for their participation leaving Apple out. It'll be interesting to hear Apple's position on this at some point in the future. Update Dec. 28, 2014: The movie is now available directly through iTunes (at least in North America).

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Apple Invents a Display Process to Diminish Bright Reflected Light

30a patent application
I was shopping for new display the other day when I stumbled onto a display from BenQ that featured special Low Blue Light technology designed specifically to target the problem of blue light exposure, which can cause eye damage and sleeplessness. The monitor comes with four preset Low Blue Light modes (30% reduction, Web-surfing – 50% reduction, Office – 60% reduction, and Reading – 70% reduction.) Considering that I and others work very long hours in front of a display each day, this kind of feature could be appealing. Earlier this morning I discovered a newly published patent application from Apple in Europe dated today that covers this basic theme of reducing bright backlight reflections using a special blue filter. Without recently bumping into the BenQ information, I wouldn't have understood the potential benefit of using such a special blue filter in a display.

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Ah, Samsung Executives to Get Pay Cut due to Disastrous Q3

10. News
In July we posted a report titled "Angry Samsung Takes Back Billions in Bonuses from 100 Samsung Mobile Division Executives for Poor Performance." Since that time, Samsung's sales have declined further and in the last quarter, profits dramatically collapsed, especially in their mobile and display businesses. In the last week, Samsung made the decision to freeze most salaries while reducing salaries to executives in divisions that didn't perform. Earlier today we report that Samsung's flagship Experience Store in London shut its doors due to poor sales and inability to match the Apple Store experience. What a gloomy holiday time it'll be for Samsung sales and retail executives.

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Apple Seeks U.S. Trademarks for New Mac Logo in B/W & Color

40. Trademark
Last weekend we reported that Apple had filed a trademark application in Hong Kong for their revised Mac logo. Today the U.S. Patent Office published two trademark applications from Apple for the same logo in color and black and white. The new Mac Logo better reflects Apple's flatter User Interface that was first introduced last year with iOS 7 and now extends through to OS X Yosemite.

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Apple's iPhone 6 is the Number One Smartphone in Taiwan

10PX. Patently Xtra
A new report this morning states that Apple iPhone 6 ranked as the number one smartphone and Apple the number one vendor in the Taiwan market in November, in terms of both sales volume and sales value, according to data compiled by local retail channels. Apple's iPhone 6 took 4 out of the top 5 smartphone sold.

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Samsung's Flagship Store in London Closes, Can't Match the Apple Store Experience

3AF 2 - photo of Samsung Store Stratford - closing
According to both a new UK report and a UK Twitter user, Samsung has shut down operations of one of its biggest shops in Stratford's Westfield, as sales plunge and shoppers said that the store never matched the Apple experience that it was apparently trying to copy.

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GTAT Actively Pursuing Sapphire Furnace Sales and Xiaomi is Looking for more Supply

10A News - Rumor
On December 15 we posted a report titled "Bankruptcy Court Approves Settlement between GTAT & Apple." In that report we noted that the settlement freed GT Advanced from some exclusivity agreements with Apple, giving it control of its sapphire-making patents and lets it retain ownership and sales rights for more than 2,000 production furnaces in Mesa, Arizona. Today, GT Advanced Technologies (GTAT) announced that following the Bankruptcy Court's recent approval of its Settlement Agreement with Apple, GT is now pursuing Advanced Sapphire Furnace opportunities for sapphire cover glass applications across the broader smartphone market as well as ongoing opportunities in the LED and Industrial markets.

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China Stepping into Royalty Battle with Qualcomm

10. News
Last week we posted a report titled "Apple, HP, Microsoft and Intel await Important IEEE Vote this Saturday on the Future of Wireless Technology Licensing Fees." Qualcomm, the world's largest maker of mobile-phone chips, earns more than 60 percent of its profits from businesses licensing its patented wireless technology, collecting $30.5 billion in licensing fees over the past five years. The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), a professional association that is the world's largest association of technical professionals, held a crucial vote last Saturday. While we await the official verdict of that vote, it's being revealed today that China is putting the screws to Broadcom over licensing fees set for smartphone makers in their country. This will put pressure on the IEEE decision, as companies like Apple aren't going to stand for paying more royalties to Qualcomm than their Chinese counterparts.

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CNNMoney Votes Apple's Tim Cook as CEO of the Year

1AF APPLE'S CEO TIM COOK
Apple is the apple of Wall Street's eye again. And that's why Tim Cook is CNNMoney's choice for best CEO of 2014. The stock is up 40% this year and near an all-time high thanks to the launch of the latest iPhones and Apple Pay service as well as excitement about the Apple Watch due out in 2015.

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