Google vice president of Android Hiroshi Lockheimer was the first witness Samsung called in its defense against Apple.
The second Apple v. Samsung patent infringement trial is underway with Cupertino claiming that five of its patents are being infringed upon by devices such as Galaxy S3, Galaxy S2, Galaxy Tab 10.1 and $2 billion in damages being sought. The previous trial went Apple’s way with Samsung being ordered to pay $930 million.
Samsung claims that some of the features it is alleged to have copied from the iPhone were first developed by Google. It called upon a key figure in the Android team, Lockheimer, to testify. As part of his testimony Lockheimer walked the jury through early development of Android.
“It was important that we have our own ideas,” Lockheimer said. In court he said that the team was very passionate about what it was doing and it tried to make Android very different from iOS. Noting that there are “thousands” of features in Android Lockheimer says they all aim for ease of use.
Apple alleges that Samsung’s devices infringe on its quick links feature, for which it holds patent number ‘647. Lockheimer testified that Google engineers actually developed the background syncing and quick links feature for Android between 2005 and 2006. They had a head start on Apple which didn’t launch the original iPhone until 2007. The timing is key for Samsung because on it the argument that these features were first created by Google can be based. Samsung also plans to call other Google executives as witnesses to support its argument. Google’s Dianne Hackborn and Cary Clark will testify about operation, design and development of Android. They are expected to specifically talk about quick links.
Samsung’s legal team said in court that they may call as many as 17 witnesses by end of the day Monday, though most would be through depositions. Judge Lucy Koh, who presided over the last Apple v. Samsung patent infringement trial, said that Samsung had to trim the list of witnesses.