Why is Apple immoral (or lack morals)?
Maybe the patent system is broken, but that's not Apple's fault. I can think the tax code is unfair and broken, but you better believe I'm going to use every legal loophole and deduction I can to minimize my tax burden. A for profit company has a responsibility to its shareholders.
We have free market capitalism here in the US. Companies are in the business to make money, that's all. If they created or own a legal patent, they have a fiduciary duty to protect their intellectual property. To do otherwise, would be a disservice to their shareholders.
Now there may be other considerations beyond pure money making--contributing to society (philanthropy), for example. Also, Apple could reason that enforcing patent X could lead to some sort of consumer backlash, which, long term, could hurt their profits, though I'm not sure Android/XDA fans are their core constituency.
Could you imagine the Apple board meeting:
CEO: So we created or own the patent to X. I noticed one of our primary competitors is using this technology and haven't licensed it.
Lawyer: I recommend we don't protect our intellectual property because it'll piss off Android O/S (competitor) users who want the new HTC (competitor) flagship phone.
Lawyer 2: We're pretty sure if we let this one go, HTC will look the other way when the shoe is on the other foot.
CEO: Makes sense to me. High five!
Before I'm flamed, I don't like it. But I don't blame Apple. Blame the patent laws and the decision making process. Even more so, blame HTC and Sprint for somehow not anticipating this. When did this decision come down? How did Sprint and HTC get caught with their pants down on this?