Channel hopes ghost of Jobs can reconcile Apple relationship issues with former partner Samsung

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He was just kidding about Android… honest

Alles wat je nodig hebt is liefde. Why is it that relationships in business are so similar to the relationships we have in life?

You start talking to someone; then you realize you have so much in common. You like the look of their logic chips and they like the look of your balance sheet.

Before too long, you begin to share more of your time with them. Then it’s your space, your ideas and even your R&D budget. Things are rosy in the garden until one day it all goes wrong.

And in a massive Blue Scream of Death, you fall out. You shout. You say things you don’t really mean, like “Let’s go thermonuclear at Android,” and the lawyers get called in.

Sometimes, like Intel’s hot and cold relationships, the lawyers are called in to take away the kids (patents) before there is a chance to say: “It’s not you, dear former technology partner. It’s me.”

But most of the time it’s: Mutually Assured Destruction or MAD.

Sometimes you get a clean break: usually when the crucial memos and data have not been deleted or shredded; or a key witness is too unwell to testify (or dies). But most of the time it gets messy. Real messy.

This is the gory, train wreck of relationship that sees former partners Apple (plaintiff) and Samsung (defendant) tearing strips off each other in right now.

Since 2007 they were inseparable.

But now, it’s gone thermonuclear, and because the partnership had become so intertwined, it now seems impossible for Apple to walk away without some serious damage to its inventory and road map.

This will only hurt the channel, as Nick Farrell quite rightly suggests.

No parts means no products for the channel.  And forget about access to the retina displays at the weekends Apple! Samy’s got the lot.

It would be MAD to move on so make up! At least for the resellers sake!

Despite the rhetoric from the fanbois about other suppliers such as LG and TSC, it doesn’t take a genius to figure out Apple is in a tight spot when you start seeing reports of its own patent lawyer digging up supposed recollections from its former and now sadly deceased boss about alleged calls between the two companies.

“ I don’t remember the specifics, ” Apple’s patent lawyer reportedly said. But when the candle flickered on the iPAD and the dataseance started to chill slightly I am sure Steve said to Samsung don’t copy the rubber band scrolling… while others at the dataseance heard… I was just kidding about Android.

Patents aside. When you wade through all the stuff about design crisis at Samsung and if Steve said this or Steve said that, it seems to all boil down to fact that the products look a bit, well, similar and have some similar functionality.

While I am of course a supporter of intellectual property and patents, I am also a supporter of competition and kinda feel that wherever you have Coke there will always be a Pepsi.

Where you have ubiquitous touchscreens you will look for the best ways to navigate menus. Where you have the best form to suit the ergonomics of a human you gravitate to those designs, otherwise we would still be talking into the brick-like “mobiles” of yesteryear (or have a Blackberry).

And with more voice control coming out I hope the estate of Gene Rodenberry isn’t called to the stand anytime soon about the patents behind the talking computer on the Starship Enterprise! Or the Cloud as 1979’s Star Trek The Motion Picture portrayed.

The secret in distribution is like Schwepps does with Coke and Pepsi: embrace the similarity and competition but distribute them both!