Samsung’s legal team may have pushed too far during cross-examination of one of Apple’s witnesses on Friday, and may have given the impression it was trying to mislead jurors in the process.
Apple called professor Rasvin Balakrishnan to testify about the ‘812 patent — also known as the “bounce-back patent.” Balakrishnan was one of the best witnesses we’ve seen to date, taking the jury step by step through the nuances of the patent, and why some 20 Samsung smartphones and tablets infringe upon it in either their browser, contacts, or photo gallery apps.
While cross-examining the professor, Samsung attorney attempted to discredit him, first by insinuating the two slides Apple presented were incorrect. In actuality, the images Johnson showed featured stills from a video the slides actually contained; so, the video was consistent with the labeling and testimony.
Johnson then gave a live demonstration of a 7-inch Galaxy Tab that didn’t incorporate the contested bounce-back feature. Johnson did so while neglecting to mention what operating system or skin the device was running. He then showed a video of a Galaxy Tab 10.1 that he said proved that device didn’t use the feature either. However, Balakrishnan pointed out to those assembled in the courtroom that in the video the user wasn’t actually scrolling to the end of the web page in question — which is a requirement to trigger the feature.
Samsung also attempted to pull a similar slight-of-hand trick when speaking to Karan Singh, a professor of computer science at the University of Toronto. Singh was testifying about the patents that cover the tap-to-zoom features and the ability to differentiate between single-finger scrolling and double-finger gestures.
Samsung’s attorney asked if any Samsung devices could scroll using two fingers. Singh replied no, the attorney then presented another video which he claimed showed just such a behavior. Unfortunately for the lawyer, the video was of a user moving their hand up the device while pinching and zooming with two fingers at the same time. Singh corrected the attorney, saying that the action was in fact NOT a discrete scroll as he’d represented to the jury and the courtroom.
Samsung’s strategy of attempting to muddy the waters in a case like this, that has so many complex technical issues involved, is a proven legal strategy. However, with the courtroom theatrics previously employed by Samsung during the trial, they do run the risk of jurors seeing them as pushing this all just a bit too far.
The trial resumed Monday morning.