Judge Koh Urges Apple and Samsung To Settle

, The Recorder


This story was originally published by The Recorder, an American Lawyer affiliate.

U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh in San Francisco started Wednesday off by urging the parties in the epic Apple v. Samsung patent trial to settle their claims before the jury starts deliberating sometime next week.

"It's time for peace," Koh told them before testimony began in her San Jose court room.

Both sides have already proven that they were using each other's intellectual property, she said. "I see risks here for both sides." But Koh's latest plea probably won't lead to an immediate cease-fire. The companies' CEOs met for a court-ordered settlement discussion before the trial began, but failed to reach an agreement.

There is too much at stake for both sides not to settle, said Mark Lemley, director of the Stanford Program in Law, Science and Technology and a partner at Durie Tangri. "But I'm not sure it will happen before the end of the trial on Tuesday," he said. "I think when we see a settlement, it is more likely to be a global settlement. And it is Google who is Apple's real target in these suits." Apple has sued Android-enabled handset makers in courts around the world.

Brian Love, an assistant professor at Santa Clara University School of Law, said cases like this typically settle long before trial begins. "At this point, the parties have taken their best shots at one another and spent quite a bit of money doing so," Love said. "There is a natural inclination, I think, for both sides at this juncture of the case to overestimate their odds of winning and to want to wait and see whether their investment in fighting the case for so many months will now pay dividends."

Jurors sat through a day of complicated, technical witness testimony Wednesday as the trial continued in its third week.

Samsung Electronics' attorneys at Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan continued to present the company's counterclaims that Apple Inc. is infringing its patents, calling witnesses to the stand who testified about patents relating to transmitting and receiving information and improving efficiency on mobile phones.

Quinn Emanuel partner Charles Verhoeven questioned former Intel Corp. executive Tim Williams, who testified that Apple was infringing Samsung's high-speed data patents in its iPhone and iPad devices.

Apple lawyer William Lee then grilled Williams about whether Apple even knew about the patents. Williams told the Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale & Dorr partner that he had no evidence they did.

Samsung also continued to press its case that it did not rip off Apple's products and that the iPhone and iPad were not as novel when introduced as Apple claims.

Through an interpreter, Quinn Emanuel managing partner John Quinn questioned Samsung designer Jin Soo Kim, who said he was working on the Galaxy 10.1 Tablet several months before the Apple iPad was introduced in January 2010.

"At any time, did you copy the work of any other smartphone manufacturer?" Quinn asked.

"I have not," Kim replied.

Apple lead attorney Harold McElhinny then questioned Kim about whether he knew about a meeting between executives at Samsung and Google Inc., in which Google told Samsung that the Galaxy Tab looked too much like the iPad. But McElhinny didn't get far.

"Whether or not that is a fact, I cannot confirm," Kim told the Morrison & Foerster partner.

It's likely that Samsung will rest its case Thursday. Samsung's lawyers only have 2.35 minutes left to present their case, not including time for closing arguments, which are slated for Tuesday.

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