Ted Cruz & Patrick Leahy slam Tim Cook for removing VPN apps from Chinese App Store

Earlier this year, Apple was forced to remove several VPN apps from the App Store in China due to regulatory reasons. At the time, Tim Cook explained that he would rather not remove them, but was forced to comply.

Now, United States Senators Ted Cruz and Patrick Leahy are pressing Apple for more information…

Spigen TEKA RA200 Airpods Earhooks Cover

In a letter sent to Tim Cook, Cruz and Leahy say Apple may be “enabling the Chinese government’s censorship and surveillance of the Internet,” noting that China has an “abysmal human rights record.”

Specifically, Cruz and Leahy pointed to Cook’s acceptance of the Newseum’s 2017 Free Expression Award. While receiving the award, Cook remarked that Apple “enables people around the world to speak up.” The senators, however, argue that Apple’s removal of VPN apps in China do the exact opposite of that:

While Apple’s many contributions to the global exchange of information are admirable, removing VPN apps that allow individuals in China to evade the Great Firewall and access the Internet privately does not enable people in China to “speak up.” To the contrary, if Apple complies with such demands from the Chinese governments, it inhibits free expression for users across China, particularly in light of the Cyberspace Administration of China’s new regulations targeting online anonymity.

The two senators also point to Apple’s past concessions to the Chinese government: removing the New York Times from the App Store and shutting down the iBooks Store and iTunes Movies.

Cook and Leahy outline a list of questions they want Cook to answer. The two ask for more details regarding how the removal of the VPN apps came about, as well as whether or not Apple has made formal requests with the Chinese government to bring the apps.

Cruz and Leahy also want Cook to “provide copies of any statements that Apple has issued either promoting freedom of speech in China or condemning the Chinese government’s censorship and surveillance mechanisms.”

Following the removal of the VPN apps, Cook remarked that he is “hopeful” the Chinese government will loosen Internet restrictions:

“We would obviously rather not remove the apps, but like we do in other countries, we follow the law wherever we do business. We strongly believe in participating in markets and bringing benefits to customers.

We’re hopeful that over time the restrictions we are seeing are loosened.”

The full letter from Cruz and Leahy can be found here on Ted Cruz’s website. We’ll be sure to keep you updated if Cook responds.

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Smart Phones Improvement – Always For the Better

Smart phones are amazing. Unlike normal phones, we can use smart phones for different tasks such as making calls, sending text messages, checking emails and surfing the internet. You can even access GPS system for navigation. Most of the high technology features are available for this type of mobile phones. As usual, when it comes to having so many features, the price can be rather high for some people.

How do we define smart phones?

They are PC-like gadget, which explains why we can use smart phones to do many things that we can only do by using PC or a laptop. With a complete OS running underneath those cover, smart phone is really the latest gadget to get things done.

For example, there is no need to work in the office to get your work done. This is important because some of you might need to travel. You can use the phone to easily help you out from answering urgent emails, communicating with your staff or colleagues through instant messaging and even surf the internet for information you need fast and easy. Who says you can not go online using a mobile phone?

Long gone the days when we use a phone to talk to someone far away to send text messages only. This is a whole new era when smart phones are conquering the market real fast. These days, there are more high technology phones than there were a decade ago. Most of the latest phones in the market are somehow integrated with the latest technologies.

Do you need a smart phone?

First of all, before you get a smart phone, you need to ask yourself do you need a smart phone at all. Not everyone need a smart phone, that is for sure. This is because some people just need a phone for calling and text messages, not for internet or more complicated use of the phone.

However, if you are a businessman, you should find yourself in need of a smart phone that can help you to manage your business much better. Example of smart phones include Nokia E-Series, Nokia N-Series, Blackberry Series, Apple iPhone and HTC Series.

LG, Samsung and Sony Ericsson are also producing smart phones but so far Blackberry, Apple iPhone and Nokia would be the most popular. How would you choose a phone that is suitable for you? Check out the features and find the one that has the most features you need.

How I accidentally became a video game writer during the mobile boom

Back in 2006, rumors were swirling about Apple’s new iPhone, but most of us were still carrying around clamshell phones or old-school BlackBerrys. A handful of kids had their hands on T-Mobile’s new Sidekick, which came with a hidden QWERTY keyboard to make texting faster but without a decent handheld device to actually support gameplay, video games were still reserved for console systems.

One company out of France focused entirely on mobile games, with a vision that U.S. gamers would quickly adopt the platform. Gameloft (now a subsidiary of Vivendi) first began in 2000 by Michel Guillemot, who is one of five brothers that founded videogame developer and publisher Ubisoft.

Gameloft hired me, and between 2006-2012, I wrote over 150 mobile video games for the publisher. Mobile gameplay was limited in those early days, but by 2008, the iPhone 3G became available and the App Store was born. Developers were scrambling to release titles for $5 a pop, and consumers gobbled them up, all to feed a growing addiction of gaming on the go.

The journey back

In the summer of 2006, I was living in Los Angeles but making plans to move back east. I was overeducated, with a Masters of Fine Arts from Columbia University in Screenwriting and over $175,000 of student loan debt. While my old college friends were becoming VPs, I was stuffing ASCAP paperwork into file cabinets at the now defunct Sony Connect, the online music store that was attempting to compete with a new Apple venture called iTunes.

A vice president in Sony’s marketing department recognized my creative skills and took me under his wing. I subsequently earned copywriting experience there and then built a small freelance business on the side. It felt like I discovered a gold mine. I was finally getting paid to write, and I had so many projects that I had to turn some clients away; this was a dream.

Based on my online portfolio, Gameloft hired me sight-unseen as a full-time copywriter. I moved back to New York City and began writing just about everything: advertorials, sales collateral, game titles, and game descriptions. One day, a French game designer in the office approached me in search of a native English-speaking writer to work on a new game set that was intended to be a cross between Big Brother and American Idol.

Here’s the thing: I was not a gamer. Sure, I was an ’80s kid so I had played Pac-Man, Space Invaders, Raiders of the Lost Ark, and Haunted House on my Atari 2600. I also had a brief stint in college when I became unhealthily addicted to Nanosaur on my mom’s iMac, but all of this was ages ago. I didn’t even own a console system. Half of me thought I had no business writing a game, but I understood storytelling, and I was a pop culture aficionado, so I happily obliged and said I would write the game during my downtime.

Adapting to a new format

Once I started writing, however, I quickly discovered a major roadblock. I had been trained to write in screenwriting format, and because every piece of text for the game would be sent to a programmer, I had to keep all text in an Excel spreadsheet. My brain was programmed to visualize scenes in a very particular format: scene heading, action, character name, parenthetical, and dialogue. Other than my narrative fiction projects, I had written in this same format since I was in high school.

Dialogue is centered on the page which allows me to hear its rhythm. I follow the cadence of story beats in scripts because of how the action is laid out on the page. But here I was, forced to write everything in boxy cells.

Cells were eventually broken out into different tabs by the programmer and before I knew it, my dialogue for single scenes was divided between several tabs. If I needed to make an edit, I’d have to play the half-done game to follow along and then find the appropriate cell somewhere in the spreadsheet. I also had to keep careful track of the character count in each cell to avoid making the player click a phone key to read the remainder of dialogue on a screen.

Everything became formulaic and for a moment, the creativity I once associated with screenwriting fell by the wayside. I plowed through and managed to finish writing the game which we called American Popstar. A top reporter at IGN gave it a glowing review and called out its “whip-smart writing.” The game went on to win several industry awards and soon after, Gameloft offered me a full-time position as the company’s first full-time game writer.

It took a move back from Los Angeles to New York City to finally get a job in screenwriting. The world works in mysterious ways.

Gameloft eventually grew its writing staff to a team of five. All of us had MFAs in screenwriting from either Columbia University or NYU. We understood narrative, could speak the same language, and finally had the chance to apply our expensive degrees to something of tangible value.

We built this city

A year later, the iPhone brought new types of gameplay possibilities and attracted millions of new players, many of whom had never played a video game before. With its mobile-only vision, Gameloft soared to the top and pushed hundreds of new games into development.

For the next five years, I had the opportunity to work on some amazing iPhone games for studios around the world, including Oregon Trail, Iron Man, CSI: NY, Castle of Magic, Cops, and 9mm – the latter of which included an obnoxious amount of cuss words and violence that I was secretly quite proud of penning. For Sherlock Holmes: The Official Movie Game, I listened to the movie in my headphones over and over again while I was writing the script so I could channel Robert Downey Jr.’s speech patterns. As the only woman on the team, I was also the go-to writer for games intended for girls. Yes, I wrote a Twilight-inspired video game called Vampire Romance and several romantic strategy games, including Date or Ditch, Paris Nights, and High School Hook Ups. Seducing love interests with sexual innuendos and escaping bullies became my M.O.

That is… until Zynga popped.

In 2009, Zynga’s Farmville became the most popular game on Facebook, a platform that was quickly overshadowing mobile. Players grew various crops and enlisted their Facebook friends to help improve and manage their farms. The game was very addictive and for publishers, social simulation and city building quickly became the new recipe for success.

By 2011, virtually every single game in development at Gameloft fell within the city building genre. The only aspect that changed between titles was the environment. Players could grow their own space colonies or transform tropical islands into bustling metropolises. Gameplay was repetitive but players didn’t seem to mind, and publishers took notice.

It was clear that the world of mobile gaming had changed, and there was literally no endgame in sight. My task of coming up with exciting narratives continued but with monotonous gameplay, I struggled to maintain my enthusiasm and eventually made the decision to return to marketing as my day job. The city building genre’s popularity in mobile eventually died down. Zynga had its ups and downs and in 2015, Gameloft shut down several of its development studios including the New York City one where I worked.

I have no regrets. The volume of game scripts that I drafted under strict deadlines truly exercised my writing muscles, and I’m a better writer now because of it. Divulging my past life as a mobile game writer is also an amazing conversation starter.

Tammy Blythe Goodman is a PR and marketing communications professional. Follow her on Twitter @gooblythe.

Jony Ive Says Apple’s New Flagship Chicago Store is About ‘Reviving Important Urban Connections’

Apple today previewed its new Michigan Avenue store along the Chicago River ahead of its grand opening on Friday.

Apple shared new pictures that provide a look at the store’s 32-foot glass facades and 111-by-98 foot carbon-fiber roof. Two staircases lead to the store’s lower level, featuring indoor trees and a seating area for Today at Apple sessions.

The flagship store is designed to create a new connection between North Michigan Avenue, Pioneer Court, and the Chicago River.

“Apple Michigan Avenue is about removing boundaries between inside and outside, reviving important urban connections within the city,” said Jony Ive, Apple’s chief design officer. “It unites a historic city plaza that had been cut off from the water, giving Chicago a dynamic new arena that flows effortlessly down to the river.”

The store was designed by Apple’s longtime architectural partner Foster + Partners, and pays homage to architect Frank Lloyd Wright’s Prairie Style homes in Chicago. Based on plans from 2015, the building spans 20,000 square feet and replaces a vacant food court. The store took over one year to construct.

A lengthy staircase leads from street level to a walkway in front of the store. The building will also be accessible via elevator.

On Monday, the store will also launch “The Chicago Series,” a set of five programs, each with a different area of focus at the intersection of technology and liberal arts, hosted over the course of four weeks. Apple said each program is co-created with local non-profits and creative organizations.

Apple retail chief Angela Ahrendts is in Chicago today and tweeted a picture of herself alongside some of the store’s employees.

“Apple Michigan Avenue exemplifies our new vision where everyone is welcome to experience all of our incredible products, services and inspiring educational programs in the heart of their city,” said Ahrendts.

Apple Michigan Avenue opens Friday, October 20 at 5:00 p.m. local time. The store is located in Pioneer Court at 401 North Michigan Avenue, next to the Michigan Avenue Bridge in Downtown Chicago.

Apple said its original North Michigan Avenue store, which was its first flagship location, welcomed more than 23 million visitors since opening in 2003. The store, just down the street from the new one, permanently closed today.

Apple has nearly 500 retail stores around the world that collectively welcome over 500 million visitors per year.

Where to find the best Playstation deals this Black Friday

Black Friday 2017 has finally arrived – the shopping frenzy that traditionally kicks off the Christmas shopping splurge.

The 24-hour sale extravaganza is renowned for featuring huge sale discounts on coveted tech products – from Apple Macbooks to luxury TVs – and last year, Brits were predicted to spend an eye-watering £1.3 billion on the Friday alone in a one-of-a-kind shopping spree.

One of the gadgets that may be top of your list today is quite possibly a Playstation.

What shoppers can expect this year

We’re expecting big discounts from all the major retailers like Amazon, Argos and GAME, so whether you’re a parent getting your X-mas shop in early, or you’re after a new PS4 for yourself, here are the best deals we’ve found so far, on everything from consoles, to bundles, to VR sets.

And with no new Playstations set to come out soon, discounts won’t solely be given to older stock, to make way for new, as it has been in the years gone by.

PlayStation VR has landed so expect older consoles to go on sale during Black Friday

Where to find Playstation Black Friday deals?


GAME store playstation VR
GAME has a huge range of Playstation consoles, games and accessories

Their name says it all really, as GAME are one of the go-to spots for all things gaming. And Black Friday will be no different, with GAME no doubt having a huge range of offers up for grabs – so stay tuned at Game.co.uk.

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Top Black Friday Bargains

Tesco Direct

Tesco Direct have already started lowering the price of tech on their site

It may seem like an unlikely spot to buy your gaming accessories from, but Tesco are actually one of the top spots for bagging a Black Friday tech deal.


Amazon warehouse
Gamers will be flocking to Amazon come Black Friday

A popular retailer for avid gamers, Amazon will no doubt go big on games consoles and accessories for Black Friday – and who knows, it may even surprise us all and offer some deals on the highly lusted-after VR console.

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Black Friday 2017 Deals


The Playstation VR is available from Littlewoods now

During 2015’s Black Friday, Littlewoods sold 3,500 games consoles and 2,500 Apple products. This year, they hope to sell even more – so we’ll be keeping an eye out.


Last year the high street tech specialist increased stock to deal with the huge demand on Black Friday and this year, we’re expecting even more delicious Xbox offerings.

Where to get the best Xbox deals for Black Friday 2016

Black Friday is here and millions of us are on the hunt for gaming accessories for much less than normal.

And one of the gadgets that may be top of your list today is something of the Xbox variety.

What shoppers can expect this year

With a new console out soon (the new Xbox X is predicted to come out on November 7th worldwide), we’re expecting some major discounts on both old and new consoles, as well as plenty of games, accessories and Xbox Live come Black Friday.

Many major high street and online retailers such as Amazon, Argos, GAME and Currys are all taking part in the Black Friday festivities, and with consumer tech a huge focus of Black Friday, we’re hoping for some big discounts on our favourite console.

Other big tech bargains expected this year include laptops, televisions, mobile phones and PS4s.

Where to find Xbox Black Friday deals?

  • TescoThe supermarket chain is one of the top Black Friday names, and already offering competitive prices on the console and its bundles, we’ll be keeping an eye out on its tech deals this year.

  • Littlewoods – While it may not be your usual gaming retailer Littlewoods does get fully involved in the Black Friday spirit. During 2015’s Black Friday, Littlewoods sold 3,500 games consoles and 2,500 Apple products, and this year, we’re expecting just as many incredible deals on offer.

  • GAME – We’re assuming that the aptly titled store will no doubt have a huge range of offers up for grabs – so stay tuned at Game.co.uk.

  • Amazon – Whether you’re after some new headphones or some extra controllers for group playing, Amazon – a pioneer of Black Friday – will no doubt be hosting some of the best deals out there.

  • Currys – Last year the high street tech specialist increased stock to deal with the huge demand on Black Friday and this year, we’re expecting even more delicious Xbox offerings.

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Are you excited for Black Friday?


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Black Friday 2017 Deals

Key shopping tips for Black Friday

Create a list

Outline the tech items you need or want and don’t stray from it! Big brands often offer package deals on Black Friday and whilst it seems like a good investment at the time, you might be stuck with added extras you’ll never use! This will also mean you’re less likely to overspend.

Set a budget and stick to it

We all know how easy it is to get carried away with spending when it comes to buying the latest gadgets and gizmos. It doesn’t matter if you’re buying a Fitbit, iPhone or home entertainment system, set yourself a clear and defined budget – and stick to it!

It’s easy to think that spending an extra £50 won’t matter too much but it can all add up if you break the budget on a number of items – remember Christmas is just around the corner.

Do your research before you hit the shops

Do your research

Most brands will start to announce their discounts before they go live on Black Friday, so try and take a look online or in store before the date and consider the products you’re interested in buying.

Always look around for voucher codes on sites such as vouchercloud.com and HotDeals.com and extra discounts before buying a product online too.

A laptop displays the Amazon website
Shopping online using sites like Amazon makes things a lot easier

Use tech to buy tech

There is no shame in using your existing tech items to buy more tech – we’ve all done it!

You can use your existing phone or tablet to download branded apps such as Amazon as they will have will have dedicated Black Friday tech landing pages so you can scan through deals quickly on the day.

Read More

Top Black Friday Bargains

Check if the product is the latest version

Many of the ‘deals’ you’ll see on Black Friday are a previous generation or they may be poorer quality products that the retailer wants to clear from their stores!

It doesn’t mean they’re not worth the investment, but it’s worth checking the specification against recent devices just in case.

Don’t panic buy

Panic normally sets in and most people will try and purchase all of their tech goods on the Friday, but remember that deals will nearly always last the whole weekend.

It’s also worth considering that whilst Black Friday and Cyber Monday are huge events in the retail calendar, there are other sales events throughout the year such as Amazon Prime Day.

If you don’t get your tech bargain on the Friday – it might be reduced further later in the year.

Shopping online
Always pay securely when shopping online

Pay securely

If you’re shopping online for tech items, be sure to use a credit card or Paypal. If you do use a credit card, use one that offers you rewards such as air miles or vouchers for money off your shopping to save even further.

Key Features of the BlackBerry Torch 9860

BlackBerry is determined to make its mark in the mid-sized market which is why it launched the BlackBerry Torch 9860, BlackBerry's answer to Apples iPhone 4 and HTCs Desire S. BlackBerry has some interesting features that depart a little from the conventional BlackBerry. For example, the Torch 9860 does not have a QWERTY keyboard like most BlackBerry units do. Instead, the 9860 has upgraded to a touchscreen interface like the iPhone 4 and Desire S. For BlackBerry loyalists, the touchscreen interface is definitely a sign of progress. Moreover, the touchscreen, virtual QWERTY keyboard allows for better maneuverability and organization.

BlackBerry Torch 9860 runs on the BlackBerry OS 7. This OS 7 is the updated version of the Bold Touch OS. The OS 7 allows for a collapsible menu on the homepage of the phone. It allows the user to arrange and rearrange different apps according to the most used, favorites, and app type. You can even view the notifications under the date and time in the toolbar by pulling down the icon that represents it. Social media has never gotten this easy. It also helps that the 9860 is equipped with a 3.7-inch touchscreen, the largest screen that BlackBerry has ever had. Here, you will also find the missed calls and updates from your social media platforms that 9860 supports.

BlackBerry Torch 9860 does not disappoint when it comes to features. It is equipped with a digital compass. It also has a document viewer that can open any Word, Excel, and PowerPoint file. It also has an organizer for numerous day-to-day tasks, as well as email and push email. Users will also enjoy the voice search feature. You can have the phone execute your voice commands. There is also a voice memo / dial for faster calls. You can also interact with your contacts through IM and BBM6. Finally, you can surf the web with an HTML5 Web Browser. Web browsing is even a wonderful experience because of the big and clear screen. The BlackBerry Torch 9860 has the Liquid Graphics feature that makes all the contents of the screen look significantly sharper. Simply, the BlackBerry Torch 9860 is built for versatility both for work and play.

The 9860 is powered by a 1.2GHz single-core processor. Qualcomm in the Bold 9900. RIM argues that advantages of a dual-core processor can only really be seen in tablets. Many critics praise the 1.2 GHz for its performance as a single-core processor in a smartphone.

All BlackBerry users love taking snapshots with their phones. The case is not different with 9860. Torch 9860 has a 5-megapixel camera that does not lag when you snap pictures, unlike most mobile phones. Speed ​​is really important for many users because a lot of cameras tend to lag, causing the photo to blur because of movement. The zero-shutter lag feature ensures that the lag is minimal as possible. Aside from that, 9860 enjoys a 768 MB RAM. This kind of RAM complements the already fast processor. Compared to Torch 9800, the 9860 is significantly faster. Basically, the higher specs for processor and RAM enhance the rest of the features of the 9860.

Bento Stack aims to make it easier to organize & travel w/ your Apple accessories

When it comes to Apple products, there are often quite a few accessories that you need to bring when you take your setup mobile. From chargers to headphones to dongles, the accessories can quickly turn an otherwise organized bag into a cluttered mess. That’s where Bento Stack comes in, a new stacking case with compartments for all of your Apple accessories…

Spigen TEKA RA200 Airpods Earhooks Cover

Launched via an Indiegogo campaign today, the Bento Stack is inspired by the classic bento box design. There are a slew of different compartments that can hold your Apple Watch bands, chargers, Apple Pencil, and much more.

As you can see in the image above, there are two deep compartments alongside two flat compartments for the Apple Pencil and Apple Watch bands. The end result when all put together is somewhat bulky, but you can remove a compartment for a more compact design if you wish.

The “Whole Stack” comes in at 3.22-inches tall, while the “One Pack” measures a more modest 1.97-inches in height.

Within each box are adjustable dividers. This means you can create storage spaces for any size accessory, whether it be a MacBook charging block or a USB wall adapter. The Apple Pencil holder can also double as an on-the-go iPhone stand.

Bento Stack isn’t limited to just traveling though. As TechCrunch points out, it can easily replace a messy cable drawer and house Lightning cables, dongles, and extra watch bands. This will help keep your workplace clean, organized, and minimalistic.

On Indiegogo, you can get the Bento Stack for $25. This comes with 4 dividers and 2 silicone straps for holding Apple Watch bands. That offer is limited, though, and prices will jump to $35 next. You can also get the “Double Pack” with two full Bento Stacks, 4 straps, and 8 dividers for $50.

Bento Stack was designed by Function 101, a new startup that aims to design accessories to help keep your technology and accessories organized. The company expects to start shipping the Bento Stack in December. As always, shipping times can vary widely with Indiegogo campaigns, though.

What do you think of Bento Stack? Let us know down in the comments.

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Native American tribe sues Amazon and Microsoft over patents

St. Regis Mohawk Tribe / Aurich Lawson

The St. Regis Mohawk Tribe has filed patent lawsuits against Amazon and Microsoft, using patents it acquired from a company called SRC Labs, according to reports in Reuters and CNBC.

Until recently, the patents were owned by a holding company called SRC Labs, which is a co-plaintiff in today’s lawsuit. The lawsuits against Amazon and Microsoft are the second and third lawsuits filed by patent-holding companies working together with Native American tribes. Patent-holding companies, sometimes derided in the tech industry as “patent trolls,” produce no goods or services and make their revenue from filing lawsuits.

At least two patent-holding companies have chosen to give their patents to Native American tribes, seeking to benefit from tribal “sovereign immunity” that could avoid certain types of patent reviews at the US Patent Office.

SRC Labs was founded in 1996 to continue the “legacy of innovation” of Seymour R. Cray, who died that same year. Cray was a pioneer in large-scale computer systems and established the operating company Cray Inc. Today SRC Labs’ website doesn’t advertise products, just dozens of patents, organized by year.

The patent-holding company is following in the footsteps of Allergan, a drug company that gave six patents covering its $1.5 billion eye medication Restasis to the St. Regis tribe last month. Allergan lawyers are seeking to shut down an inter partes review of the patents taking place at the Patent Trial and Appeals Board, by claiming the patents now benefit from tribal sovereign immunity. The move by Allergan may be a moot point, because the drug company just lost its patents in district court.

However, the strategy practiced by Allergan and its affiliated lawyers is catching on quickly. Today’s lawsuit is the second time that a patent-holding company has teamed up with a Native American tribe to sue a technology company. MEC Resources, a company wholly owned by the Mandan, Hidatsa, and Arikara Nation, sued Apple last month, seeking to get patent royalties on the iPad 4.

Sovereign advantages

Some patent holders are clearly eager to apply sovereign immunity to their patents, but it isn’t yet clear how well the strategy will work. The single federal judge who has weighed in on the issue did so earlier this week, expressing “serious concerns” about a strategy to essentially “rent” sovereign immunity.

If it does work, the advantages could be considerable. State universities have a different form of sovereign immunity, and in at least two cases, universities have stopped patent reviews from moving forward at the Patent Trial and Appeals Board. Public universities also have a big advantage in federal court, because potential defendants can’t file a declaratory judgment lawsuit against them to challenge their patents. In other words, they have to wait to be sued before they can fight back. This effectively gives universities the ability to choose when and where to fight patent battles.

Unlike the sovereign immunity granted to state universities, however, Native American sovereign immunity can be altered or revoked by Congress. Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), who has called Allergan’s St. Regis deal a “brazen and absurd” loophole, has introduced a bill to do just that.

Allergan agreed to pay the St. Regis Tribe $13.5 million up front for the patent deal, and $15 million per year as long as the patents stayed valid. It isn’t clear exactly what kind of compensation St. Regis is getting from the SRC Labs deal, but the Tribe’s FAQ on its patent deals says the litigation is all being handled on a contingent-fee basis. That means money from settlements or damages will be split between the law firm, and the Tribe, with SRC Labs likely getting a cut as well.

Supercomputer Patents

The SRC Labs / St. Regis lawsuit asserts that the following six patents are infringed by Microsoft: US Patent Nos. 6,076,152; 6,247,110; 6,434,687; 7,225,324; 7,421,524; and 7,620,800. They relate generally to large multi-processor computer systems and re-configurable processors. All list Jon Huppenthal, co-founder and CEO of SRC Computers, as an inventor.

Amazon was sued using the ‘687, ‘324, and ‘800 patents, all linked above, as well as US Patent Nos. 7,149,867 and 9,153,311. The two patents asserted solely against Amazon have different inventors, but also originated at SRC Computers.

The complaint, which was filed in federal court in Virginia, isn’t yet available from the courts database. Ars will update this post with the complaint when it becomes available.

Inventor Huppenthal didn’t respond to a request for comment about the case, and an e-mail to SRC Labs bounced back as undeliverable. The company’s phone number and website registration information is obscured by a privacy service.

Attorneys representing the tribe, from the firm Shore Chan DePumpo LLP, didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

Apple iPhone – No Doubts in Quality

The arrival of iPhones of Apple Inc. has been a real storm in the telecommunications sector. As with any product, Apple Inc. from the consumer market holds much expectation on iPhone. Thanks to the high-end technology and elegant features, iPhones succeeded to win the hearts. The Multimedia and Internet enabled Quad band GSM phone supports EDGE called iPhone, Apple Inc. 29th in June 2007 in the USA

Apple, known for technological innovations and developments, it was not prepared, at the goodwill of the time. It is clear from just one glance at iPhone. The Apple iPhone comes with a built-in camera function and a portable media player, which is really intriguing. The digital camera provides the user the perfect images of excellent quality. It is possible to use for the shoot, record, store and send pictures, w is an element of fun into it.

Together with him, iPhone also has the functions of SMS and visual voicemail that things more benefit to the user. The audience of Apple comes with an attractive slimline casing, which is more impressive. The user can easily and comfortably the tasks, including e-mail, web browsing and local Wi-Fi connectivity. It is also possible for him to do functions such as conferencing, call hold, call merge Caller ID, and the integration with other cellular network functions with the help of Apple iPhones.

The Apple iPhone is a feature of Visual Voice Mail assists the user in viewing a list of current voice-mail messages on the screen, without requiring a call to the voice mail. It is also possible for him to hear and delete messages in a non-chronological order by selecting them from a list on the screen. This feature is not available in most of the phones. The latest ringtone, the iPhone on September 5, 2007, makes it possible for the user to create custom ring tones from the iTunes Music purchased for a small fee. The ringtones are between 3 to 30 seconds long a part of a song that can input and output.