Feeds

Harris bangs Apple's head over Newton

'We lost money when you cancelled Newton -- so pay up or else', claims vendor

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The essential guide to IT transformation

Apple's decision to nuke its Newton PDA division earlier this year provoked complaints from MessagePad aficionados and the platform's selection of software developers. However, loud though the grumbles were, no one sought recompense through the courts -- or, rather, no one backed up their asseverations with actions. Until now. Hardware vendor Harris is seeking legal redress for the $10 million and up it claims it lost by being forced to back out of a deal with Ameritech. Harris had been contracted to supply the US telco with machines based on the MessagePad 2000. Harris is seeking $17 million in damages, covering lost business and development costs. "Apple deprived Harris of the basic benefits Harris reasonably expected to receive from its dealings with Apple, and which Apple understood were being conferred on Harris," says the ten-page complaint. Apple interim CEO cancelled Newton development in February as part of his attempt to focus the company on its core competencies and reduce costs. At the time, the move generated much criticism since the division had at long last begun to offer products, specifically the eMate 300 education-oriented laptop and the MessagePad 2000, which delivered on the promises Apple originally made for the technology. Newton technology was originally intended for widespread licensing -- in addition to Harris, Sharp, Siemens, Schlumberger, Motorola and Digital Ocean and Sony also licensed the technology. Interestingly, the suit blames Apple's decision to distance itself from the Newton on the departure of erstwhile CEO John Sculley, who pioneered the technology, and the arrival of Steve Jobs, who ultimately cancelled it. Sculley, don't forget, oversaw Jobs' marginalisation at Apple, and it was widely claimed that nixing Newton was an act of petty revenge on Jobs' part, the logic being that if Newton was such a threat to Apple's revenue, either Michael Spindler or Gil Amelio, the two CEOs between Sculley and the returned Jobs, would have cancelled it already. Still, since so many of the so-called Jobs reforms were, in fact, initiated by his predecessor, it's entirely feasible that Amelio would also have de-emphasised Newton as part of his programme to cut back on the large number of technologies Apple was spending development dollars on. If that's the case, Amelio, who regards Jobs as the man responsible for his firing, as outlined in his book, On the firing line: my 500 days at Apple, will see the Jobs regime being stuck for $17 million as nothing more than poetic justice. Newton, of course, discovered gravity by having an Apple fall on his head, so perhaps its about time Newton banged Apple's cranium. ® Click for more stories

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
BBC: We're going to slip CODING into kids' TV
Pureed-carrot-in-ice cream C++ surprise
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
Twitter: La la la, we have not heard of any NUDE JLaw, Upton SELFIES
If there are any on our site it is not our fault as we are not a PUBLISHER
Facebook, Google and Instagram 'worse than drugs' says Miley Cyrus
Italian boffins agree with popette's theory that haters are the real wrecking balls
Sit tight, fanbois. Apple's '$400' wearable release slips into early 2015
Sources: time to put in plenty of clock-watching for' iWatch
Facebook to let stalkers unearth buried posts with mobe search
Prepare to HAUNT your pal's back catalogue
Ex-IBM CEO John Akers dies at 79
An era disrupted by the advent of the PC
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.