Samsung Begins Presenting Case in Apple Patent Infringement Trial

 
 
By Robert J. Mullins  |  Posted 2012-08-13
 
 
 

Samsung began presenting its case Aug. 13 in a federal court trial over Samsung's alleged infringement of Apple product patents, arguing that there was ample "prior art" in the marketplace before the iPhone came along.

Samsung's first witness in the trial underway in U.S. District Court in San Jose, Calif., was Ben Bederson, a computer science professor from the University of Maryland.

Bederson told the jury that his team did research in 2004 into what it called "zooming technology" that would enlarge the image of the screen on a hand-held device. The research also covered technology to allow a user to touch files on a screen to open them with their finger instead of a stylus, as previous generation smartphones like the Palm did. His report was published in 2005, two years before Apple introduced its first iPhone.

Apple attorney Mike Jacobs, cross-examining Bederson, argued that Apple's technology is even more sophisticated than that cited in his research, including the "rubber band effect" presented at trial earlier, where when someone scrolls down a smartphone screen with their finger and reaches the bottom, the image rebounds slightly. However, another prior art witness called immediately afterward by Samsung, Adam Bogue, testified that capability was available in 2005.

Earlier in the day, Apple rested its case as the plaintiff in the $2.5 billion suit against Samsung after trying to document the losses it suffered due to Samsung's alleged infringement. Apple called to the stand Terry Musika, who testified as an expert in calculating damages in a civil lawsuit.

He said Samsung has sold 22.7 million smartphones and tablets, which Apple contends infringe on Apple patents, generating $8.1 billion in revenue. He further calculated that Samsung generated $488 million in profits, which he termed "unjust enrichment" from copying iPhone, and later iPad tablet, designs.

Apple also presented testimony from Samsung executives based in South Korea, via videotaped depositions, who said the company had three meetings with Apple executives to discuss Apple's infringement claims. Apple offered to license some, but not all, of the patents in dispute. Samsung declined to do so. A Samsung licensing director, Dong Hoon Chang is shown on the video saying, through a translator, "there was no such infringement."

The presiding judge in the case, U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh, said she hoped Samsung would finish presenting its case by Aug. 17 and that after closing arguments and jury instruction, the jury could begin deliberations on Aug. 22.

After denying a routine defense motion to dismiss the Apple case against Samsung, Koh ruled that three Samsung smartphones that Apple said infringed on its patents could not be part of the case because they were not sold in the United States. However, two dozen or more Samsung devices remain evidence in the case.

Material for this report was obtained from a live blog of trial events posted on the Web site of the San Jose Mercury News.

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