SAN JOSE – As many as 13 Samsung phones use “substantially similar” icons and display screens as protected in an Apple iPhone design patent, said an expert witness testifying for Apple. Another 11 Samsung handsets are “confusingly similar” in their trade dress, said Susan Kare, a graphics designer who created icons for the original Apple Macintosh computer.
“I had the experience of being confused,” Kare told the jury, describing her experience seeing a conference table full of operating handsets when preparing for her testimony with Apple attorneys.
“I went to pick up the iPhone to make a point and I was holding a Samsung phone,” said Kare who has run her own design consulting firm for 27 years. “I think of myself as someone who is pretty granular in looking at graphics, and I mistook one for the other,” she said.
Kare singled out the Samsung Captivate, Continuum, Droid Charge, Epic 4G, Infuse 4G, Vibrant and other handsets as substantially or confusingly similar to the iPhone and its D604,305 patent.
The Samsung phones had a few variations from the Apple designs that Kare characterized as minor. For example, some Samsung handsets had three dots near the top of the icons or a blue rather than a black status bar at the top.
“I noticed it but it didn’t affect my conclusion,” Kare said. "I felt it was pretty minor compared to the exciting mix of color icons that grab you, the [black] grid, the shape and the way the icons fill the screen [which] is mainly what you notice,” she said.
Samsung attorneys will cross-examine Kare later today.
This lady is a "graphics" expert. She doesn't know $hit from Apple Butter about the phones, but was allowed to say something about which phone she mistakenly picked up because she was allowed. If this case hinges on icons, it will be one of the largest travesties ever perpetrated !
Say they stole your OS design, say they stole some functionality in a significant app, Apple say SOMETHING that matters, but please say something that matters !
Just another reason for me to never purchase an Apple product or support anyone who I know that has an Apple when they have technical questions. My response is, I don't own Apple products.
@PuterGeek: Indeed, there has been a lot of back and forth on that term.
So far Apple witnesses have claimed that the overall impression one gets looking at accused Samsung industrial designs and screens is substantially similar.
Samsung has raised doubts by noting many differences in details. Apple has countered that minor detail differences appear intended to obscure the fact of the overall impression which is the products really do look a lot alike.
Remember Apple is arguing this portion of the trial over their 'design patents' which cover the ornamental design. This is different than what we normally think of with patents.
For a design patent they only need to show the designs are 'substantially similar'. The question is what is the legal definition of 'substantially similar'.
They let "experts" say they get confused by the similar "look-and-feel", but denied prior art to be submitted by Samsung. One can only imagine what a farce this is going to be. Reality TV will look like the real deal in comparison. My view from the bottom of the planet is one of disbelief. If this does not get some improvement to the patent system, then I feel China will become the main place to lodge in future, and they will bar the sale of Apple products (like the recent iPad name court case), when silly patents run against common sense. I have an iPhone and the kids have Samsung, and not once in how many years have we ever picked up the wrong phone. I have yet to see a red iPhone.
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