The trial between Apple and Samsung, which is kicking off today, will apparently be moving forward without a key witness that could have helped Samsung's case quite a bit. All Things Digital reports that Shin Nishibori no longer works at Apple and has said that he will not be appearing in court to testify, despite being subpoenaed. According to a letter sent to Judge Lucy Koh (which was penned by Nishibori's lawyer), Mr. Nishibori is currently in Hawaii trying to "recover from several health issues," and claims that the subpoena was not properly issued under the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Therefore, he will be staying where he is and won't be attending the courtroom tussle between Apple and Samsung.
Nishibori would have been a good witness for Samsung to have up on the stand, as he created Sony-influenced designs for the iPhone back in 2006. If Samsung could have shown that the original iPhone was initially inspired by Sony products, it would have potentially made for a stronger case against Apple, which is claiming that Samsung infringed on Apple-held patents with smartphones of its own. Instead, it seems that the trial will proceed without any involvement from Nishibori, much to Samsung's annoyance we imagine.
Apparently, Nishibori wrapped up his ten-year career at Apple earlier this month, but at this time we're not sure why he left. Perhaps its related to these health issues he's reportedly suffering from? Whatever the reason for his departure, it's clear that he doesn't want to get involved in this massive lawsuit, and frankly, we can't really blame him if he's in poor health.
There's currently a ton of buzz surrounding this Apple-Samsung lawsuit, with both parties now suing each other, and each wanting a significant amount of money. In the coming weeks, Apple and Samsung will both be presenting their cases to a 10-person jury, and it'll be up to that jury to wade through various patents and convoluted laws to determine who's in the right. We're expecting most of the process to be incredibly boring, but the suit has already revealed a few early Apple prototypes that proved to be rather interesting. Maybe there are more pleasant surprises like those prototypes on the way? We can only hope!