It hasn’t helped Apple’s reputation either when they took Samsung to court over possible patent violations regarding the new Galaxy s4. While Apple won the case and was initially awarded $1.05 billion in damages, US District Court judge Lucy Koh decided to wipe nearly $450 million from that total, citing the jury’s miscalculations in the settlement. Judge Koh had recently blocked a request by Apple to have Samsung stop selling the phones in the lawsuit, claiming that Apple could not prove that the purloined technology was responsible for customers buying Samsung products over Apple.
The lawsuit though has become sort of a Pyrrhic victory for Apple because even though they may have had a case of patent infringement, it has hurt Apple’s image in the eyes of the general public. The aggressive pursuit of damages has made it seem like Apple is resorting to court cases and patent protection rather than developing products, giving the company an image of being a corporate thug and tarnishes the “cool guy” vibe that it spent nearly 40 years cultivating. With the press relations problems coupled with an increasingly competitive market for smartphones, Apple has both an innovation problem in the eyes of investors, and a corporate raider problem in the eyes of customers, which makes Apple’s road back to the top even more difficult.
What does Apple do?
Apple has hit a rough stretch since peaking last September, and is currently looking a bit lost in the shuffle of smartphones. It used to be that Microsoft was Apple’s only real competitor in the computer market, but with the expansion of the smartphone market the company is seeing new battles. A loss in confidence from investors underscores the problems of the company, as many are losing their love affair with the iPhone compared to more advanced products like the new Samsung Galaxy s4. This is nothing new for Apple, however, as the company had a similar down period in between the two Steve Jobs eras. This time, though, Mr. Jobs isn’t coming back and CEO Tim Cook has yet to step up to the plate and give investors and consumers the same level of confidence they had when Mr. Jobs was at the helm. This is an industry that demands innovation and creativity, which Apple has been able to thrive on for years. It’s time to tap that again, and get Apple back on top.
The article Apple Is Losing Its Shine originally appeared on Fool.com and is written by John McKenna.
John is a member of The Motley Fool Blog Network — entries represent the personal opinion of the blogger and are not formally edited.
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