Supreme Court sides with Samsung in patent battle with Apple

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A U.S. Supreme Court ruling Tuesday brought relief to Samsung in its lawsuit with Apple over smartphone design patents.
A U.S. Supreme Court ruling Tuesday brought relief to Samsung in its lawsuit with Apple over smartphone design patents.
Illustration: Cult of Mac

The U.S. Supreme Court dealt a major blow to Apple Tuesday when it sided with Samsung in a smartphone patent battle that had the South Korean company staring at hundreds of millions of dollars in penalties.

In a unanimous ruling, the Court ruled a patent violator does not have to turn over all its profits from sales if the stolen design involved certain components and the not the entire device.

Tim Cook says Apple Watch sales ‘off the charts’

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Apple Watch Series 2 waterproof
Apple says the Apple Watch set a sales record for the first week of holiday shopping.
Photo: Apple

A day after a gloomy third-quarter sales report about the Apple Watch, CEO Tim Cook says the device is already having a record holiday as one of the season’s most popular gifts.

He shoppers bought a record number of Apple Watches during the first week of holiday shopping, and the wearable is on pace to have its best quarter ever to close out 2016.

People love Apple’s doomed AirPort more than any other router

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Apple's routers are #1.
Apple's routers are #1.
Photo: Apple

Apple sure seems to be doing routers right. At least according to the more than 3,000 customers polled in J.D. Power’s 2016 Wireless Router Satisfaction Report.

Apple came out as the top-rated router manufacturer in Overall Satisfaction, which would be great news for the AirPort team — if Apple hadn’t just disbanded it.

The job of a designer is to be a psychologist [Podcast interview]

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Belkin's design director Oliver Seil says designers are basically psychologists.
Belkin's design director Oliver Seil says designers are basically psychologists.
Photo: Oliver Seil/Belkin

In the last decade or so, lots of companies have gotten design religion. Design has been brought in-house, where it can shape products from the very get-go. There’s an obvious source for this idea — Apple.

This week on the Kahney’s Korner podcast, I talked to Oliver Seil, senior design director of Belkin International’s Innovation Design Group. We discussed Belkin’s products and design process; the surprising complexity of USB cables (and why they cost so much); and why Apple has had such an enormous influence on design and manufacturing.

You can listen to the podcast or read a full transcript of the interview below. (Or dive into the show notes.)