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19 Dec 12 Apple Loses Bid to Block Galaxy Sales, Damages Still in Play

Apple Inc. (AAPL)’s request for additional damages against Samsung Electronics Co. (005930) for patent infringement remains to be decided after the iPhone maker lost its bid to block U.S. sales on 26 of the Galaxy maker’s devices.

Apple failed to establish that consumer demand for Samsung products was driven by technology it stole, U.S. District Judge Lucy H. Koh in San Jose, California, said in her ruling yesterday. While a jury found Samsung infringed six Apple patents, it isn’t in the public interest to ban Samsung’s devices because the infringing elements constituted a limited part of Samsung’s phones, Koh said.

The jury said Aug. 24 at the end of a trial that Samsung should pay $1.05 billion. Apple asked Koh to increase the damages by $536 million, while Samsung says they should be reduced by more than $600 million. Koh, who held a hearing on the matter Dec. 6, has yet to issue a ruling.

“There’s not going to be any knockout punches between these two competitors,” Carl Howe, a Yankee Group analyst, said in a phone interview. “Injunctions can be knockouts. This is going to be a war of money.”

Samsung and Apple, the world’s two biggest smartphone makers, have each scored victories in their patent disputes fought over four continents since Apple accused Asia’s biggest electronics maker of “slavishly copying” its devices. The companies are competing for dominance of a global mobile-device market estimated by Yankee Group at $346 billion this year.

Apple Products

Hours after Koh’s ruling on the sales ban, Samsung, which faces an antitrust probe by European regulators, said it will halt efforts to block sales of Apple products in Europe. The developments in the U.S. and Europe may move the companies closer to settling their global litigation.

“There will be some settlement of some sort and all this stuff is just going to dictate who’s going to provide a bit more money than the other,” said David Long, a patent lawyer with Dow Lohnes PLLC in Washington who’s not involved in the case. “All this court stuff is just posturing.”

After the verdict in San Jose, Apple argued Samsung bet that the benefits of using intellectual property from the iPhone and iPad would outweigh the money damages the jury awarded. Apple urged Koh to approve the sales ban and award additional damages because Samsung took market share from Apple by “deliberately copying the iPhone design,” according to a court filing.

Jury’s Calculations

Kathleen Sullivan, a lawyer for Samsung, contended at the Dec. 6 hearing that the damages should be reduced by more than $600 million. Sullivan said that while the jury’s calculations were precise, the nine-member panel was hampered by a verdict form that, against Samsung’s wishes, wasn’t “particularized” enough to permit jurors to properly arrive at damages on a product-by-product basis.

“You should reverse engineer” to make sure the damages are “causally connected to the evidence,” Sullivan told the judge.

Koh said at the hearing that while the jury was precise and consistent in calculating infringement damages for 28 different Samsung products, the method used by the panel may have been mistaken.

“If there is enough evidence in the record to justify that damage award then that verdict should be upheld,’ Harold McElhinny, a lawyer for Apple, argued to the judge.

Galaxy Smartphones

The patent disputes began when Samsung released its Galaxy smartphones in 2010. Apple’s Jobs, who died Oct. 5, 2011, initiated contact with Samsung over his concerns that the Galaxy phones copied the iPhone, according to testimony from the trial in August.

Jobs later vowed to wage ‘‘thermonuclear war” to prove that phones running on Google Inc. (GOOG)’s Android operating system copy the iPhone. Samsung devices use Android.

Apple’s 2011 suit claimed Samsung products infringe four design patents and three utility, or software, patents. While finding infringement of six patents, the jury concluded that Samsung didn’t infringe one patent covering the design of Apple’s iPad tablet computer.

In weighing the sales ban request, one test that Koh considered was whether Apple has been harmed by the infringement, and whether customers buy Samsung devices specifically because they have features patented by Apple. Apple’s evidence doesn’t establish that its three design patents cover a feature that drives customer demand, Koh said. Apple doesn’t have patents for certain iPhone features, such as the general concept of a two-finger pinch or flick.

‘Consumer Demand’

“Though evidence that Samsung attempted to copy certain Apple features may offer some limited support for Apple’s theory, it does not establish that those features actually drove consumer demand,” she said.

An injunction would prevent consumers from gaining features on Samsung phones because a few such features infringed Apple’s patents, Koh said.

“The potential for future disruption to consumers would be significantly greater if this court were to issue an injunction, and such disruption cannot be justified,” she said.

Only three of the 26 products that Apple sought to block in the U.S. are still being sold, according to Samsung: the Galaxy S II by T-Mobile, Galaxy S II Epic and Galaxy S II Skyrocket.

2014 Trial

Newer smartphones made by both companies, including Samsung’s Galaxy S III and the iPhone 5, already have been added to a related lawsuit in which Apple and Samsung accuse each other of copying products. That case is also before Koh and is scheduled for trial in 2014.

Kristin Huguet, a spokeswoman for Cupertino, California- based Apple, said in an e-mail that the company declined to comment on yesterday’s ruling by Koh.

Samsung said in an e-mailed statement it was pleased the judge denied “Apple’s move to limit consumer choice” in denying the sales ban. The Suwon, South Korea-based company said it would review the court’s orders before deciding whether to take “further measures.”

The latest decision implies that the total damages award isn’t likely to go higher and may even be reduced, according to Lee Sun-Tae, an analyst at Seoul-based NH Investment Securities.

“The final ruling on the penalty isn’t likely to be overturned,” Lee said.

Apple, the world’s most valuable company, rose 2.9 percent to $533.90 at the close of trading in New York. Samsung, the world’s 15th-biggest company, gained 0.8 percent in Seoul after two days of losses, extending its gain for the year to 43.2 percent.

The case is Apple Inc. v. Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., 11- cv-01846, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California (San Jose).

To contact the reporters on this story: Joel Rosenblatt in San Francisco at; Karen Gullo in San Francisco at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at

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14 Dec 12 Android Malware Creeps Into Cellphone Bills

Smartphones are meant to be headache-free compared with old-school computers. But malicious software written for Android devices can be even sneakier than the malware that invaded PCs.

The most prevalent form of Android malware scrapes small amounts of money from smartphone owners by making secret charges to their phone bills, according to a report published by Lookout, a mobile security company in San Francisco. This type of malware is called toll fraud, and it has the potential to fool plenty of people who don’t pay close attention to their phone bills every month.

But how does toll fraud work if the carriers control our bills? The process is actually very complex, said Derek Halliday, a product manager at Lookout.

First, it helps to understand a legitimate transaction involving text messages. Say, for example, a person wants to send a text message to a service to buy a new ringtone. When this happens, the cellular network forwards the text message to a middleman service, which handles the transaction between the wireless provider and the ringtone provider. The ringtone provider then shoots a message to the cellphone owner asking for confirmation of the order. When the customer confirms the order, he receives the ringtone, his cellphone bill is charged, and the carrier takes a cut and gives the rest of the money to the ringtone provider and the middleman service.

Here’s how toll fraud works: A person downloads a malicious app. The app invisibly sends a text message to a service that uses a middleman service that has a relationship with the malware author. A confirmation message is sent back to the malware, which blocks it from being seen by the customer and confirms the charge. The charge goes to the user’s bill, and the carrier takes its cut and gives the rest of the money to the service and the middleman, and thus the malware author.

In its  report, Lookout estimates that from the beginning of 2012 to the end of 2013, 18 million Android users may encounter malware. About 72 percent of the malware that Lookout detected this year was toll fraud, and the company expects this number to grow, because even though the process is complex, the code isn’t difficult to replicate. The company advised cellphone owners to regularly check their bills for suspicious charges.

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18 Jun 12 Sharp to Launch New Android-based User Interface to Differentiate …

Japan’s Sharp said Monday it will release a new user interface for its smartphones in an attempt to differentiate them from the Android masses.

The Osaka-based electronics maker’s new “Feel UX” will feature a simplistic design with large icons, and allow many phone functions, such as camera, photo gallery, and music player applications, to be accessed directly from the lock screen. Once unlocked, the interface has three main screens, one each for apps, shortcuts to phone features, and widgets such as calendars and clocks.

The phone’s lock screen can also automatically tweak its background photo to match the current weather, and displays updates on stocks and other real-time info as well as messages and missed calls. Unlike with competitors such as Apple’s iOS, the photo featured on the lock screen is never obscured by time or message information, which appear across a section in the bottom third of the screen in images provided by Sharp.

With the majority of smartphones based on Android and having increasingly similar feature-sets and specifications, manufacturers are hoping unique-looking software user interfaces will differentiate their products and hook customers. Sharp joins rivals such as Sony and Samsung in offering user interfaces that run on top of various versions of Android.

Sharp said it will initially phase the new design into its Japanese phones, but is “exploring its potential use in smartphones destined for international markets.”

Sharp, known mainly for its own line of LCD TVs and as a global supplier of LCD panels to other manufacturers, is also a major handset maker in Japan, offering smartphones based on its Aquos TV brand. The company also sells a limited number of mobiles abroad.

The new user interface was designed and built together with software design firm Frog Design, headquartered in San Francisco. Frog said the interface was developed over a nine-month period, and is being launched on seven different Aquos-brand smartphones in Japan.

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09 Jun 12 Android’s one killer feature that trumps the iPhone

At Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC 2012) next week in San Francisco we expect to see the latest iteration of iOS unveiled with a laundry list of updates to extend the growing appeal of the
iPhone. But, there’s still one key feature that Apple isn’t likely to improve enough to catch up with

While iOS 6 will reportedly include Apple’s new 3D Maps app, Facebook integration, an update to Siri, and a revamped mobile iTunes store, the platform still has one big weak spot: Alerts

It’s hard to argue that Android is more usable than iOS overall. The truth is that iOS is a more limited, simplified experience, but that makes it easy for most users to pick up and start using right away and makes it hard for them to get themselves in trouble by misconfiguring things. By contrast, Android is more flexible and customizable, but it can also be more difficult to navigate and more apt to confuse smartphone novices.

However, the alerts system is the one area where Android is just flat out more useful and more usable than iPhone. If that sounds trivial, it’s not — especially for business professionals and others who do a lot of stuff with their smartphones. Alerts give you timely updates of important information, quickly let you know about things that need your attention, and give you an at-a-glance look at your latest messages from various sources.

Apple made big strides with its alerts system in iOS 5 — taking obvious inspiration from Android — but even the vastly-improved alerts system still didn’t match the power and efficiency of what Android offers. In fact, iOS 5 didn’t match Android 2.3 “Gingerbread,” which still powers the vast majority of Android phones. Meanwhile, Google enhanced the alerts functionality even more in Android 4.0 “Ice Cream Sandwich,” which debuted at the end of 2011.

The biggest advantage that Android alerts have over iOS alerts is immediate glance-ability, and a lot of that has to do with the fundamental design of the platform. That’s why iOS appears unlikely to catch up in this area any time soon.

What I’m really talking about when I say “immediate glance-ability” is that when you turn on the display on your Android phone you see a bunch of little badges in the top left corner of the screen that let you know you’ve got new messages or that a calendar appointment is about to happen or someone is talking about you on social media or there’s a severe weather alert in your area.

Android alerts provide an immediate glance at the stuff you care about.

Jason Hiner | CNET)

In iOS, you actually have to swipe down from the top of the screen to open the Notification Center and then scroll through your whole alerts list by app to see what all you might need to address. A lot of iOS users just aren’t in the habit of checking the Notification Center since it’s a newer addition to the platform.

The iOS 5 Notification Center has handy weather and stock updates but alerts require a lot of scrolling.

Jason Hiner | CNET)

More often than not, the habit in iOS is to see if your apps for Mail, Messages, Calendar, or Twitter (or various other apps) have their red alert badges in the upper left corner activated with the number of important new things you haven’t seen yet. Then you go straight into each app and check the new stuff. Lots of iOS apps can use the red alert badge now and it’s handy for the stuff you want to track most often, but it’s obviously not as efficient as that quick glance in Android.

A single alert in iOS can quickly get your attention, but it can break down when you have multiple alerts.

Jason Hiner | CNET)

Once you get past the glance-ability, Android also has iOS beat when you dive into the listing of alerts. Ironically, iOS is actually more configurable and customizable in its listings, but Android’s default configuration nails it, and that’s more important since most people never change the defaults. While iOS lets you decide how many alerts you want to show for each app and how you want to organize them, Android simply mixes up the alerts and shows them in chronological order from the time they happened. In Android 4.0, you can also simply swipe right to dismiss individual alerts, which isn’t possible in iOS.

Here’s a comparison of the alerts listings in iOS and Android.

Jason Hiner | CNET)

Another thing to keep in mind here is that Google is just really good at alerts, and Apple isn’t. Take a look at what Google has done with Google+ alerts by building them into the universal Google toolbar and giving an excellent at-a-glance look at the activity that’s happening around your Google+ content. Meanwhile, Apple has still never built a decent universal alerts system into
Mac OS. The most popular solution is the third party app Growl.

Google+ is another example where Google has done good work with alerts.

Jason Hiner | CNET)

Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of other things that Android does better than iPhone — for example, turn-by-turn GPS navigation and Google Voice integration. But, Apple will likely catch up in maps and GPS and Google Voice is a niche solution mostly used by technophiles. Alerts represent the one area where Android is a lot more friendly and usable than iOS, and that’s unlikely to change any time soon unless Apple does a more drastic redesign on the user interface of its home screen.

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30 May 12 Android clears court review of patent claims

Android did not infringe Oracle patents, court rules, in a major blow to Oracle. Android ruling means Oracle won’t collect billions of dollars in royalties from Google.


Dan Levine, Reuters /
May 29, 2012

In this file photo earlier this month, attendees chat at the Google IO Developers Conference in San Francisco. On Wednesday, a San Francisco federal court ruled that Google’s Android operating system for smartphones did not infringe Oracle’s patents.

Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP/File


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Google Inc’s Android mobile platform has not infringed Oracle Corp’s patents, a California jury decided, putting an indefinite hold on Oracle’s quest for damages in a fight between the two Silicon Valley giants over smartphone technology.

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In a case that examined whether computer language that connects programs and operating systems can be copyrighted, Oracle claimed Google’s Android tramples on its intellectual property rights to the Java programming language.

Google argued it did not violate Oracle’s patents and that Oracle cannot copyright certain parts of Java, an “open-source” or publicly available software language.

RELATED: 20 essential Android tips and tricks

In addition to finding for Google on patents, the jury foreman told reporters that the final vote on a key copyright issue earlier in the case had heavily favored Google.

David Sunshine, a New York-based intellectual property lawyer who advises hedge funds, said the outcome of the Google trial was humbling for Oracle, which had it won, could have gained handsome payouts given the growing market for Android devices.

“It’s a huge blow,” Sunshine said.

For Oracle and its aggressive CEO Larry Ellison, the trial against Google over Java was the first of several scheduled this year against large competitors. Another trial is set to begin next week between Oracle and Hewlett-Packard Co over the Itanium microprocessor.

The verdict was delivered on Wednesday in a San Francisco federal court.

Oracle spokeswoman Deborah Hellinger said the company would continue to defend and uphold Java’s unique functionality.

“Oracle presented overwhelming evidence at trial that Google knew it would fragment and damage Java,” she said.

Attorneys for Oracle looked grim after the verdict, while Google lawyers smiled and shook hands. Google general counsel Kent Walker said the company felt it was important to send a message by taking the case to trial.

“We didn’t want to back down when we felt the facts were on our side,” Walker said in an interview with Reuters.

Although the jury found earlier that Oracle had proven copyright infringement for parts of Java, it could not unanimously agree on whether Google could fairly use that material.

Without a finding against Google on the fair use question, Oracle cannot recover damages on the bulk of its copyright claims. And U.S. District Judge William Alsup has not yet decided on several legal issues that could determine how a potential retrial on copyright would unfold, if at all.

RELATED: 20 essential Android tips and tricks


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26 May 12 Google’s Android Didn’t Infringe Oracle Patents, Jury Says

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Google’s Android Didn’t Infringe Oracle Patents, Jury Says

Google’s Android Didn’t Infringe Oracle Patents, Jury Says

Google’s Android Didn’t Infringe Oracle Patents, Jury Says

David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

Google I/O conference in San Francisco.

Google I/O conference in San Francisco. Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

3LP's Rivette Discusses Oracle Suit Against Google

May 23 (Bloomberg) — Kevin Rivette, a managing partner at 3LP Advisors LLC, talks about a federal jury’s finding that Google Inc. didn’t infringe on Oracle Corp.’s patents in developing Android software.
He speaks with Cory Johnson on Bloomberg Television’s “Bloomberg West.” (Source: Bloomberg)

Google Didn’t Infringe Oracle Patents for Java

May 23 (Bloomberg) — Google Inc. didn’t infringe Oracle Corp.’s patents for Java, a jury said today. Jon Erlichman reports on Bloomberg Television’s “Bottom Line.” (Source: Bloomberg)

Google Inc. (GOOG), the largest Web search
provider, didn’t infringe Oracle Corp. (ORCL)’s patents in developing
Android software, a federal jury found in the second phase of an
intellectual-property trial in San Francisco.

The 10-person jury ruled unanimously today that neither of
the two patents at issue was infringed. Jurors found May 7 that
Google infringed Oracle’s copyrights and deadlocked on whether
it was “fair use,” denying Oracle the ability to seek as much
as $1 billion in damages from the search engine company. Last
year Oracle said copyright damages could amount to $6 billion.

The patent phase of the trial was less important than the
copyright issues because the patents were worth much less, said
Brian Love, an intellectual-property attorney and teaching
fellow at Stanford Law School. Still, the jury finding today
underscored how the trial went against Oracle, he said.

“This case is maybe something like a near disaster for
Oracle,” Love said in a phone interview.

The company may be limited to seeking about $150,000, the
most allowed by law, for copyright infringement, the presiding
judge in the case has said.

‘Couple of Days’

“That potentially is not enough to cover what they are
spending over a couple of days” in legal fees during the trial,
Love said.

U.S. District Judge William Alsup said he may issue a
ruling next week on whether Oracle’s Java application
programming interfaces, software tools at the heart of the case,
can be copyrighted. A ruling that they can’t would be another
blow to Oracle, while a ruling for Oracle would revive the
company’s ability to seek large damages.

Alsup also must rule on Oracle’s request for a patent
judgment in its favor based on his reading of the evidence, and
Google’s request for a new trial on copyright infringement.

Immediately after the verdict was announced, the judge
dismissed the jury from the case and canceled the third phase of
the trial over damages.

Oracle, the largest maker of database software, alleged
Google stole two patents for the Java programming language when
it developed Android, which now runs on more than 300 million
smartphones. In the first phase of the trial, the same jury
found the search engine company infringed Oracle’s Java
copyrights while it couldn’t agree on whether the copying was
“fair use.”

‘A Victory’

“Today’s jury verdict that Android does not infringe
Oracle’s patents was a victory not just for Google but the
entire Android ecosystem,” Catherine Lacavera, Google’s
director of litigation, said in an e-mailed statement.

Google and Oracle’s experts had estimated damages for both
patents at $3 million to $4 million if the jury found

“Oracle presented overwhelming evidence at trial that
Google knew it would fragment and damage Java,” Deborah Hellinger, a spokeswoman for Oracle, said in an e-mail after the
verdict. “We plan to continue to defend and uphold Java’s core
write-once run-anywhere principle and ensure it is protected for
the nine million Java developers and the community that depend
on Java compatibility.”

Jury foreman Greg Thompson, 52, said today that during
deliberations he alone among the 10 jurors thought that Google
infringed Java patents. After almost six days of discussions,
said he was persuaded by other panel members to change his vote.

Jury Foreman

The jury lost two members over the course of the six-week
trial. Thompson said he alone voted that Google’s use of Java
copyrights didn’t constitute fair use early in deliberations in
the copyright phase. Eventually he convinced two other jurors
and the jury deadlocked after nine members voted that Google
made fair use of the copyrights, he said.

“The more tech-savvy a person is, the more difficult it is
to persuade them about what limitations should be placed on
technology,” Thompson said in an interview after the trial.

Handing patent cases to juries is “always a mixed bag,”
Love said.

Google rose $8.66 to $609.46 at 4:02 p.m. in New York
trading after spiking as much as 0.7 percent when the verdict
was announced. Oracle climbed 32 cents to $26.68.

The case is Oracle v. Google, 10-3561, U.S. District Court,
Northern District of California (San Francisco).

To contact the reporter on this story:
Karen Gullo in San Francisco at

To contact the editor responsible for this story:
Michael Hytha at

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24 May 12 First look at Chrome’s new retail store in downtown Portland

New Chrome store in downtown Portland-21

Chrome, a well-known bag and urban bicycling/lifestyle apparel brand, opened a new retail store in downtown Portland yesterday. Staffers from the company’s San Francisco headquarters spent three weeks completely renovating a 1,300 square foot space at 425 SW 10th Avenue (around the corner from the Ace Hotel and up the street from Powell’s). Portland is just the fourth city where Chrome has opened a store, and we’re by far the smallest. Their other stores are in San Francisco (their headquarters), New York City, and Chicago.

Chrome was founded 17 years ago in Boulder, Colorado and moved to San Francisco a few years later. Since then, due in large part to their iconic messenger bags, they’ve extended their product line and now offer apparel, backpacks, and footwear. While their gear is not bike-specific, the brand lives and breathes urban biking and everything is made with the assumption that the customer will move around the city on a bike.

I dropped by their new store yesterday. Even though the doors had only been open for a few hours, the place was already buzzing. Customers milled around both outside and around the store’s TV (which was playing old clips of Eddy Merckx at the Tour de France). And as you might expect from a brand that made its name with bomb-proof quality messenger bags, a lot of the folks hanging out at the store were local bike messengers.

Here are a few shots from inside…

New Chrome store in downtown Portland-15

New Chrome store in downtown Portland-13

New Chrome store in downtown Portland-19

New Chrome store in downtown Portland-14

New Chrome store in downtown Portland-12

New Chrome store in downtown Portland-18

New Chrome store in downtown Portland-9

New Chrome store in downtown Portland-11

I met one guy near the front door, Barry, who said he was the store’s first customer. He’s been a fan of Chrome for awhile. “I’m glad they came to Portland!” he said, smiling and showing off his new backpack (which he likes because he can carry his laptop and clothes in it and it’s “great for traveling because it fits in the overhead bin.”)

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Another person who’s glad Chrome came to Portland is the store’s manager, Amanda Sundvor. Many of you might already know Amanda as the high-fiving and fun-loving mechanic at 21st Avenue Bicycles (where she used to work), as the DJ who keeps local bike parties thumping, or as the force of nature behind Backyard Blam (the folks who brought you the recent Cross Up event, among others).

New Chrome store in downtown Portland-8

Sundvor loved working at 21st Avenue, but recently suffered a bad hand injury that made working on bikes painful. She had gotten to know the folks at Chrome over the years and when they asked her to manage the new store, she says, “It was very serendipitous.” Now she’s overseeing a crew of six employees and her infectious energy will help keep this place ticking.

New Chrome store in downtown Portland-24

Chrome’s Retail Marketing Manager Paul Wilson, came up from San Francisco to train employees and make the store look just right. Wilson, like many businesses I’ve asked over the years, says his company wanted to be in Portland because of, “The great vibe and community here.” Wilson says he wants Chrome to become a “hub” (they don’t call them stores) for the community. “We’re here in Portland to support our dealers and urban cycling in general… We want people to come here, hang out, and find out what’s going on… It’s a community thing, we want to foster that.”

New Chrome store in downtown Portland-10

The store itself is gorgeous. The 18-foot ceilings make you want to linger and the hand-made, wooden fixtures are tastefully integrated with Chrome’s urban graphics and dizzying array of colorful products. At the center of the store is a wide wooden table for taking a closer look at the bags. Want to know how it feels all packed up? They’ve got some weights you can toss in the bag to find out.

Near the shoe section is a tastefully-sized TV (not a huge big screen) and some stairs and couches to view it on.

New Chrome store in downtown Portland-6

In the rear of the store is what they call the “sewing station.” Sundvor says customers can make an appointment to have certain bag models made custom by the store’s full-time seamstress. Just call ahead, pick your bag, choose a color and other options and they’ll make it right in front of your eyes. Through a partnership with courier company MercuryPDX, they’ll even deliver the bag to your door later the same day (usually) using local bike messengers.

New Chrome store in downtown Portland-4

This is definitely a store worth checking out (for locals and visitors alike). There’s a big grand opening planned for First Thursday on June 7th. Amanda says to bring your guns because there’ll be an arm-wrestling contest.

    Chrome Portland Retail Store
    425 SW 10th
    Hours: Monday – Saturday 10-7, Sunday 10-6

Welcome to Portland Chrome! Hope you don’t mind all the rain…

New Chrome store in downtown Portland-3



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13 May 12 Mobile OS Madness Ahead In June

10 Ways To Get More From Your Android Device
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June is going to be a big month for iOS, Windows Phone, and Android. The progenitors of these three platforms–Apple, Microsoft, and Google, respectively–each have scheduled developer events in San Francisco throughout the month. None of the companies has tipped its hand on what to expect, but we have a pretty good idea.

Typically, these events are spread out. Microsoft typically holds its MIXX developer conference in February or March, and Google I/O is usually in April or May. This year all these events are scheduled back-to-back between June 11 and June 28.

Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) is set for June 11-15 at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. Microsoft’s event, the Windows Phone Developer Summit, is scheduled for June 20 and 21. A location has yet to be announced, though it will likely be at Moscone. Last, Google I/O is taking place at Moscone June 27-29.

In other words, we’ll learn about changes to iOS, Windows Phone, and Android in an action-packed, 17-day timeframe. It’s going to be fun. Here’s what we might see.

– Worldwide Developer Conference (iOS). Apple is likely to offer a preview of iOS 6, which is the platform used by the iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch. Reports are mixed on whether iOS 6 will be a transformational change for Apple’s smartphone platform. Though iOS has added hundreds, if not thousands, of new features since its 2007 debut, the overall look and feel of the platform is beginning to look dated.

Possible new features on deck: a brand new Maps app and improved app compatibility with iCloud. InformationWeek‘s Tom Claburn has a laundry list of features he’d like to see in iOS. They include better or replaceable native apps, an API for Siri, and choice of browser.

Apple always manages to pull off a few surprises with its iOS revelations. Once it announces a new iOS, Apple will make a beta available to developers that will go through 10 to 12 weeks of updates before general release to the public. That aligns things pretty well with a probable October debut of the iPhone 5.

– Windows Phone Developer Summit (Windows Phone 8). Microsoft has yet to admit that Windows Phone 8 exists. It might not yet have an official name (the code name is Apollo), but it wouldn’t make sense for Microsoft to refer to the next version of Windows Phone as anything other than Windows Phone 8. In fact, Microsoft’s carrier and handset partners are already referring to Apollo as Windows Phone 8, even if Microsoft isn’t.

Windows Phone 8 will tie together all the work Microsoft has done with Zune, Windows Phone 7, and Windows 8 over the last several years. Microsoft revealed Windows 8 and its desktop and tablet components in February. Windows 8 is expected to reach general availability by this fall. Based on my experience with Microsoft’s system-level updates, a June debut of Windows Phone 8 and its developer tools points to a fall release for the final build of the software.

What sort of features will we see? Hard to say. The most important aspect will be the similarities between Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8. It will present a more cohesive look and feel–which could help Microsoft boost adoption of Windows Phone. Other possibilities include a zippier user interface, support for enterprise VPNs, a revamped IE browser, and platform-level Skype integration.

– Google I/O (Android 5.0 Jelly Bean). Google is delaying its Google I/O developer event by more than six weeks compared to previous years. The Android-maker didn’t provide a reason for the delay. It simply could be related to venue availability. Or, it could be because Google needed the additional time to pull together code for the next version of Android.

Looking back a bit, Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich was released to OEMs in November 2011. Only now are we starting to see the first wave of devices arrive with Android 4.0 on board. Based on what I saw this past week while attending the CTIA wireless trade show, Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich will begin to gather critical mass in June and July when a wave of new handsets reach the market with the software installed.

This begs the question, is it too early for Android 5.0? It might be.

Google previously has said it intended to scale back new versions of Android to once-per-year updates, which keeps it on pace with competitors Apple and Microsoft. If Google doesn’t show off a brand-new version of Android, I expect it will at the very least launch major new apps, services, or components of the operating system. For example, last year’s Google I/O brought the Google Music service, which later became a part of the Google Play Store.

So, what do you think? Is June going to be the single most exciting month in the history of smartphones? It certainly has the potential to be. I look forward to all the developer events on the calendar to see what we’ll be talking about for the rest of the year.

At this interactive Enterprise Mobility Virtual Event, experts and solution providers will offer detailed insight into how to bring some order to the mobile industry innovation chaos. When you register, you will gain access to live webcast presentations and virtual booths packed with free resources. It happens May 17.

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11 May 12 Chrome Industries launches 4 new shoe models

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Hitting stores today, Industries is proud to introduce four new models into the and fixed scene. Built to be indestructible like all of the , the new Chrome shoes are the Kursk Natural and Natural, the Lower Southside and the addition of Chrome’s first-ever women’s model, the Dolores. “Our Summer Footwear line is inspired by American classics and built with our commitment to making bombproof gear for the city,”  says, Steve McCallion, Chrome Industries’ President.

For the Kursk Natural and Kursk Pro Natural, Chrome created a limited run of their best selling shoes in a natural canvas color. Military grade materials and special features like clip-in compatibility and stiffer soles for maximum riding make these the most sought after urban bike shoes on the market. They provide on the bike and look good chilling in the bar.

The Lower Southside is part skate, part fixed freestyle and part stoop party. It’s the low-top version of Chrome’s popular Southside. Fit and styling include a low profile silhouette with breathable side panels, full-grain leather and a latex wedge in the heel for impact cushioning. The Lower Southside is built for shredding the city and barbequing in the park.

Chrome’s first-ever women’s model, the Dolores features a durable 1000 denier nylon upper to withstand all the city can throw at it and a slimmed down silhouette tailored for a woman’s foot that features a narrow toe box and low profile design. The elastic tongue gorge allows the Dolores to be worn with or without laces. The Dolores provides women the look of an American classic with the durability and comfort for which Chrome is known.

Go to to find your local Chrome Retailer or you can purchase them through the online store and all of the Chrome HUBs in , , Chicago and soon to open .

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07 May 12 Jury favors Oracle in mega-millions Android lawsuit, hits impasse on key issue

A federal jury in San Francisco has reached an impasse on a key issue in Oracle’s copyright-infringement case against Google, handing the database-software company a major setback.

Oracle had been seeking up to $1 billion in damages on copyright claims after alleging that Google Inc. built its popular Android mobile software by stealing some of the technology from Java, a programming platform that Oracle Corp. bought two years ago.

In delivering a partial verdict Monday, the jury found that Google infringed on the largest of Oracle’s claims, but it couldn’t agree on whether Google’s use was legally protected “fair use.” Without that determination, it will be difficult for Oracle to win major damages.


TECH TRIAL OF THE CENTURY: Oracle has accused Google of patent infringement over Google’s Android, the mobile OS that now powers more than 300 million smartphones and tablets.

Jan. 27, 2010: Oracle closes deal to buy Sun Microsystems, gets the Java programming language.

Aug. 12: Oracle sues Google in U.S. District Court, says Android infringes on Java.

Sept. 12, 2011: Company CEOs are ordered to attend mediation to settle the lawsuit.

March 27, 2012: In a joint statement, companies say they are far apart. Oracle seeks hundreds of millions in damages, Google won’t pay more than a few million.

April 16: Trial begins. In opening statements, Oracle says Google’s top executives have long known that they stole a key piece of tech.

April 17: Google’s opening statements frame the case as Oracle’s response to its own failure to build mobile software. Oracle CEO Larry Ellison admits he wanted to compete before deciding instead to sue Google.

April 18: Google’s Larry Page returns to the witness stand, looking uncomfortable as he deflected questions about his role. 

Monday: Lawyers make closing arguments on the copyright issues. Judge sends case to jury for deliberation.

The jury also found that Google infringed on Oracle’s copyright on nine lines of Java code that is in Android, but Oracle can only go after statutory damages on that one. Those damages can range from $200 to $150,000.

Google is moving for a mistrial. Google prevailed on other claims.

Google has argued that it only used parts of Java that have always been freely available.

The same jury will now hear evidence in the next phase of the trial, covering Oracle’s allegations that Android violates two Java patents. Those claims are believed to be worth considerably less to Oracle than the hundreds of millions of dollars in damages that it had hoped to extract from Google had it prevailed on all of its all of its allegations of copyright infringement.

Oracle bought Sun and Sun’s Java technology in early 2010. Later that year, Oracle sued Google, alleging Android infringes copyrights and patents that protect Java. The companies went to trial in San Francisco earlier this month.

During his closing argument, Google attorney Van Nest leaned heavily on the testimony of former Sun Chief Executive Jonathan Schwartz, who had said Sun had no grounds to sue Google over Android. Schwartz, as Google’s attorneys stressed, publicly praised Android.

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