It was just another day in a legal meeting . Susan Kare, who was to be called as a witness in Apple’s multibillion-dollar patent feud with Samsung, was going though a pile of smartphones in front of her, looking for an iPhone .
Instead she grabbed a Samsung phone. "I mistook one for the other," she told the Apple-Samsung jury yesterday ."The overall collection of graphic features (on Samsung phones) can be confusing to a consumer,"she added.
For Susan, a design guru much involved in early Apple computers, the task in court ws simple, the San Jose Mercury News reported: "Give the jury her considered opinion that the colourful constellation of icons on Samsung's smartphones clearly mimicked the iPhone."
She did that, and then identified 11 Samsung smartphones that, based on icon features, she said were "substantially similar" to the iPhone.
Samsung attorney Charles Verhoeven went through a number of icons, pointing out differences between the Apple and Samsung designs.
Apple experts claim there is an overall, unmistakable similarity in the appearance of Samsung smartphones and tablets and that this suggests copying and patent infringement.
However, they conceded to Samsung lawyers there were distinctions when each design element was broken down to the micro level.
"I see the parts that make a whole," Kare explained, "not the ingredients that make a cookie."
Kare said Apple has paid her about $80,000 for the case. Another expert called by Russell Winer, said he had been paid about $50,000.
Winer, a New York University marketing scholar, said Samsung's products had created consumer confusion, calling it the "imitator scenario."
The trial resumes on Friday with more Apple experts due to give evidence.