Former Apple designer says Samsung phones looked similar
By Edwin Chan
SAN JOSE, California (Reuters) - The focus of Apple Inc and Samsung Electronics courtroom battle shifted to the iPhone's iconic display on Tuesday, as the U.S. company called on a former employee and award-winning graphic designer to back up claims that Samsung gadgets look "confusingly similar."
Susan Kare, who from 1982 to 1986 had a hand in designing icons for the original Macintosh computers, scrutinized 11 of the Korean firm's phones - including the Galaxy S and Epic 4G - and found icons and layouts on screens to be very similar.
Apple is contending that buyers may confuse Samsung devices with the iPhone, and accuses the Asian firm of copying designs and features. Samsung, in turn, has accused Apple of violating Samsung wireless technology patents.
Kare - who is also credited for Microsoft Corp icons such as the "Notepad" and for its deck of "Solitaire" game cards - testified that even she was fooled by a Samsung gadget at a pre-trial meeting.
"There was a big conference table with many phones on it, and some of them were on," said Kare, who followed the late Steve Jobs to his NeXt computer startup in 1986 before starting her own firm. "I could see the screen. I went to pick up the iPhone to make a point about the user interface, and I was holding a Samsung.
"I think of myself as someone who's pretty granular about looking at graphics, and I mistook one for the other."
When it was Samsung's turn to cross-examine Kare, lead attorney Charles Verhoeven switched on a Samsung phone and asked Kare to tell the jury what she saw: a bright white Samsung logo.
In response to Kare's testimony that the icons looked largely similar, Verhoeven shot back: "Have you ever seen triangular icons?" Continued...