Two additional scenarios might have unfolded. One could be that pat- ent protection for Cadillac stimulates further innovation. Competitors de- velop automobiles with batteries as well as fuel cells powering electric mo- tors, high-tech materials for convert- ible bodies, and joystick controls that resemble those of modern-day video game consoles. The intense competi- tion spurs on advances in manufac- turing methods as well, leading to as many as 250,000 patents are filed that cover the design and functionality of the iPhone and other smartphones. lower prices. Lots of companies make money, and consumers have choices of varying quality and prices. Anoth- er scenario, however, could be less cheerful. Maybe no company comes up with a better design. Cadillac dom- inates the market and becomes the most valuable company in history. Its investors are delighted and so are its affluent customers. As for everyone else, they make do with inferior three- wheel vehicles or continue to drive horses and buggies.
In some ways, the August 2012 Cali- fornia jury verdict against Samsung
(the world’s largest maker of smart- phones) in the case brought by Apple (the world’s second largest maker) could