I once caught a fish thiiis biiig!

The other day over at Macworld the Macalope alluded to how the fine folks at Microsoft’s legal department might be giddy at the thought of raking in some cash from the new Kindle Fire. They’ve got a lot to be giddy about lately as they landed themselves a big fish this week: Samsung.

Microsoft announced today that it has signed a definitive agreement with Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., to cross-license the patent portfolios of both companies, providing broad coverage for each company’s products. Under the terms of the agreement, Microsoft will receive royalties for Samsung’s mobile phones and tablets running the Android mobile platform.

Florian Mueller points out the relationship problems between OEMs and Android.

By taking a royalty-bearing license, Samsung recognizes that Android has intellectual property problems that must be resolved with license fees, and reduces to absurdity the idea that Google is going to be able to protect Android after the acquisition of Motorola Mobility.

“This relationship comes with more baggage than I bargained for!” Now it seems Samsung is telling Google “I think we should see other people.”

Tizen is apparently the combination of MeeGo and LiMo — neither of which have any serious adoption — that I wrote about earlier. It looks like an Intel- and Samsung-led rival to Android — which is selling well, but has patent issues, and is increasingly under Google’s control.

It’s an uphill battle against Android and iOS at this point but, hey, good luck, Tizen.

Consumers and developers will need reasons to support Tizen, too, which will be a struggle. But it’s probably worth trying, even if just to show Google that it has competition.

The Macalope’s not sure Tizen is necessarily the ticket, but he suspects that the devotion of the Android community to its platform is ankle-deep compared to the iPhone and iPad, so it might be worth a try.

The problem, however, is not so much the platform as it is the ecosystem. This is why the Macalope thinks that Amazon possibly buying webOS from HP could be a great idea. Amazon already has the infrastructure and the media to make a platform successful. Yes, the breadth of apps will be less than what’s available on its App Store for Android, but does Amazon really want to get into a licensing deal with Microsoft? That’s where every other “Android” (quotes because Amazon’s fork of Android can’t technically be called “Android” because Google owns the trademark) OEM has ended up.

What do you want to be when you grow up, Amazon?

Busted businesses

This week’s Macworld column looks at Microsoft, eWeek and HP. Hence the title.

Have you tried rebooting?

This week’s Macworld column looks at Lion and Windows 8 and features a visit with everyone’s favorite Windows user, the Winotaur (who is now on Twitter, by the way).

Losing the valuable child-of-an-Android-OEM exec demographic

With all the news about Windows 8 this week, you may have missed the news about iPhones. Turns out they just aren’t cool anymore.

(According to HTC US president Martin Fichter. Void where prohibited by common sense.)

“I brought my daughter back to college — she’s down in Portland at Reed — and I talked to a few of the kids on her floor. And none of them has an iPhone because they told me: ‘My dad has an iPhone.’ There’s an interesting thing that’s going on in the market. The iPhone becomes a little less cool than it was. They were carrying HTCs. They were carrying Samsungs. They were even carrying some Chinese manufacture’s devices. If you look at a college campus, Mac Book Airs are cool. iPhones are not that cool anymore. We here are using iPhones, but our kids don’t find them that cool anymore.”

There certainly couldn’t be any selection bias in that survey.

“Stacy, say something nice to my dad. He’s got Steve Jobs envy bad. It’s a whole big thing.”

Well, assuming these kids were being truthful instead of just nice, someone should tell them to get “hep” to the fact that customer satisfaction is hella cool, yo! Apparently the youngsters on floor four of Reed’s Che Guevara Hall were not part of this survey. Nor were they part of any of the numerous surveys showing iPhone loyalty beating Android.

It’s true that Android users tend to skew younger but there’s a more likely reason than “The iPhone’s for dads! LOL! TTFN! TMI! BRB! FML!” And that is that they’re just cheaper.

You can’t fault Fichter, really. What’s he supposed to say? “Kids buy our phones because they’re cheap but the minute they get enough money they’re going to buy an iPhone.” That doesn’t look good in an annual report.

In a follow-up interview, Fichter sounded a little more realistic.

“I’ve heard the term iPhone killer a lot of times, outside of my company and inside my company. Whenever I hear it in meeting rooms inside HTC, I caution people and say: ‘Hey, look, there is a market there for the iPhone.’ I don’t think we want to kill the iPhone because it is geared to a certain amount of people who like things in a certain way, and we do something different.”

Right. Their competition is less Apple and more Samsung, LG, Motorola and Slappy Joe’s Android Handset Shack off I-75 in Sarasota.

The Macalope really needs to get down to that stretch of I-75. There’s a lot going on there.

Executive summary

This week’s Macworld column looks at three executives: Tim Cook, Andy Rubin and Steve Jobs, and includes a piece from Forbes that is Apple-is-a-religion-ariffic!

Like a hurricane

This week’s Macworld column looks at the continued aftermath of Steve Jobs’ resignation. Because people continue to say dumb things about it. Oh, and Paul Thurrott is annoyed by you all.