Apple forces Google employee off jury in Samsung case

Jul 31, 2012
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After some arguments and the forced removal of a Google employee, the jury for the Apple vs. Samsung trial has been selected, with the ten people now facing opening statements when court reconvenes today. Of the 74 individuals pared down, the final list includes a mechanical engineer, an AT&T supervisor, and an unemployed would-be video came designer, Fortune reports. However, Apple had to use one of the four preemptory challenges it can make to have a Google employee removed from contention.

That decision came after the employee - an interface designer at Google - admitted to owning two Samsung phones, a pair of iPads, a Samsung Galaxy tablet and a B&N NOOK Color but otherwise satisfied Justice Lucy Koh that he was cleared for the case. Judge Koh dismissed Apple's arguments that Google develops the Android OS running on Samsung's tablets, leaving the Cupertino legal team with no choice but to officially veto the selection.

Meanwhile, other rejected potential jurors included the father of a man who works for Apple's legal department and an Apple employee who said he had already decided on who the rightful winner of the case was. Another man was cited in the filing of 120 patents, while a further possibility apparently flummoxed the court by saying he saw no difference between this case and that fought between Apple and Microsoft.

All potential picks were questioned as to their computing habits, what devices they use, and how they browse online, including which search engine they relied upon primarily (generally Google, though with a little Yahoo use thrown in by one person to spice things up). They were also asked if they owned any Apple stock, and whether they had read the Walter Isaacson biography of Steve Jobs, to which several of the final jury confirmed that they had.

Apple and Samsung filed pre-trial briefs to outline their positions last week, with Apple arguing that Samsung had slavishly copied the physical design of the iPad and iPhone, and segments of the software design, to gain an unfair advantage for its Galaxy series of phones and tablets. Samsung, however, maintains that Apple's interpretation of its design patents is far too broad; as the company's design chief said in an interview this week, Apple is "fighting over rectangles" and seemingly lacks common sense.

The trial is expected to meet three days per week for the first two weeks, with the possibility of daily court sessions beyond that.


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