Google Claims Siri a Threat to Their Core Business

While attempting to convince the U.S. Senate antitrust committee that Google is not a monopoly, Google chairman Eric Schmidt stated that Apple’s Siri could pose a serious threat to the company’s core business. From AppleInsider:

Eric Schmidt, Google’s chairman and former chief executive, admitted to the U.S. Senate antitrust subcommittee that Apple’s new Siri personal assistant technology is a “significant development” in search and could pose a threat to his company’s core business.

This should come as no surprise. The U.S. government is investigating whether Google classifies as a monopoly, so it makes sense for Google to defend itself with whatever they have available. As it stands, Siri is only available on a single device, so Google citing the fledgling technology comes across as an act of desperation to get the government off their back.

If Apple decides to implement Siri on more devices, and continues to pull results from non-Google sources like Yelp and Wolfram|Alpha, then Google may have a valid reason to be concerned. Considering that 2/3 of all mobile searches on Google come from iOS devices, having Siri pull the results from alternative sources could hit Google hard.

EU Investigating Samsung’s Use of 3G Patents Against Apple

I have written about Samsung’s use of RAND (or FRAND) patents against Apple, describing it “like fighting a forest fire with a water pistol.” Whereas Apple is waging its legal wrath against Samsung on the basis of copying its products, Samsung volleyed with its own suit alleging Apple infringed on their 3G patents. Unfortunate for Samsung, their patents are part of the 3G standard and fall under the FRAND (fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory) requirement.

The European Union’s top antitrust authority has now launched their investigation into Samsung’s use of 3G patents against Apple. From Computerworld:

Samsung has sued Apple in five E.U. countries alleging infringement of its patents on 3G mobile technology. The European Commission will now consider whether the South Korean company is abusing the principle of fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) licensing in these cases.

I wouldn’t be surprised to find Apple benefiting from this investigation, and Samsung coming out with a skinned knee.