Aug 28 AT 12:01 PM Nick Gray 51 Comments

Video: Jury foreman reveals how Apple versus Samsung verdict unfolded


If you missed it, Apple was awarded an incredible victory over Samsung late last week when a jury ruled that dozens of Samsung phones infringed on Apple’s trade dress and patents. From your comments, it’s clear that many of you would have voted much differently. While none of us were on the jury we can finally hear from some of those that were, Vel Hogan (jury foreman during deliberations) sat down with Bloomberg for a 16 minute interview.

Most of what Vel reveals sounds reasonable, but we do take issue with his explanation as to why prior art was not used to invalidate Apple’s ’460 patent.

The software on the Apple side could not be placed into the processor on the prior art and vice versa. That means they are not interchangeable. That changed everything right there.Vel HoganJury Foreman

A nice anecdote of how they came up with their decision, but it does not align with the definition of prior art in patent law:

Prior art (also known as state of the art, which also has other meanings, or background art), in most systems of patent law, constitutes all information that has been made available to the public in any form before a given date that might be relevant to a patent's claims of originality. If an invention has been described in the prior art, a patent on that invention is not valid.Prior Art definitionWikipedia

I certainly don’t have a legal background, but it sounds like the jury made a decision based on interpretations of the law which simply are not true. Do you think this bit of information from Vel Hogan is enough to help Samsung appeal at least part of the jury’s verdict? You can check out the full interview below and be sure to let us know your thoughts in the comments.

Via: Wikipedia

Source: Bloomberg

Nick is a tech enthusiast who has a soft spot for HTC and its devices. Nick joined the Android and Me family in the summer of 2010.

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  • Stella

    Great catch, Nick! According to the definition, the jury seems to have added their spin to it. I think they were to trying to understand the scope of the law but made it more complicated. I hope the Samsung lawyers bring this new information into question in their appeal.

  • Janice_1988

    Korean Samsung traitors should be ashamed of themselves, criminally copying Apple innovations.
    Seems like the asians have a lot of skills for betrayals or kind of.

    • triangle

      Wow, I’m not trying to feed the trolls, but this is just an ignorant comment. Asians have a lot of skills for betrayals? Have you never heard of Bernie Madoff? Does that make everyone in the US a criminal?

      You are just out of line. Just get out of here please. We don’t need your hateful speech.

    • Ray

      You racist idiot. Obviously you lack intelligence and common sense. Why does it matter where they’re from?

      What have you done for humanity? NOTHING, so STFU child.

    • chris

      Why even feed this troll guys, she or he is here just to get a rise out of us Android users. I don’t understand how a person can hate Google and Android so much that they need to troll android blogs. Seriously get a life. Probably had a bad experience with a low budget Android device, switched to an iPhone and now feel that iOS is solo much better without even giving a high end Android device a try. This person could also be a Windows Phone user, for some odd reason those people have a personal vendetta against Google and Android. Maybe what I explained above?

      I feel really bad for Samsung, but when they released the Samsung Vibrant and others, I knew this was gonna happen. But for Apple to be awarded injunctions against the Galaxy S2 line will be completely absurd. I am a huge Samsung guy nowadays, and if this sets them back some, I hope HTC can take advantage. Hopefully Google gives HTC a shot at another Nexus phone.

  • poosh2010

    what really impresses me is how he was able to keep a straight face during his answers

  • Thomas Biard

    Seems to me like the Jury was trying to dumb down what is expected from patent law like “could I defend it if it were my patent” and looking at the whole scope of similar design instead of individual instances of copying. Possibly a better solution to the Jury would have been 1/3 non-apple/samsung owners, 1/3 iphone and 1/3 samsung android owners.

    I feel like they put a bunch of uninformed people in the jury to judge detailed patent law and a lot of them were under-qualified technically speaking to understand the detail. Of course they didn’t feel like they were heading in the wrong way when making a decision. No one (normal person) ever intentionally heads in the wrong direction when learning a new subject and coming to a decision.

    TL;DR This interview annoyed me

    • masterpfa

      Hence the reason for an appeal. The way in which they came to their decision on Patents, even professionals are still arguing about, beggars belief.

      A jury decision was not the course for a case this large and of such importance

  • cdg

    “The software on the Apple side could not be placed into the processor on the prior art and vice versa. That means they are not interchangeable. That changed everything right there.”

    What does that even mean? Oddly enough, according to, 460 is actually a Samsung patent. Apparently this idiot couldn’t defend that.

    • Daniel

      His point is that Apple’s implementation is too elaborate (or complex, pick your poison) to fit into the simpler solution Samsung proposed in ’460, therefore it’s not an equivalent solution. I don’t know how relevant this is in this particular case, but he does have a point – in many cases patents are avoided by using less efficient methods.

      • cdg

        Of course it’s impossible to really tell, but it seems more likely he just misspoke and was really referring to Apple patent ’915 (swipes, scrolls, pinch-to-zoom). That one certainly has all sorts of prior art, which he seems to be saying doesn’t matter since Apple’s implementing code wouldn’t have run on the earlier systems that implemented the prior art.

        I really hope I’m wrong, because I’d like to have some faith in the jury system. Of course I’m not sure what other explanation could possibly exist for upholding Apple patent ’915.

        • Really?

          Yea, I do wonder if he misspoke or stated the wrong patent number? Anyone else have an opinion on this?

          • boof

            No, he is talking about Samsung’s ’460 patent, which among other things, covers the use of scroll keys (i.e. actual physical buttons) to scroll through photos within an email. Apple uses a swipe gesture. Samsung tried to argue that using a swipe gesture was the same as using physical buttons. The jury didn’t agree.

  • Baller

    I don’t really agree with any of the patent rulings, I think they’re all pretty much invalid by prior art or obvious once you use a full touchscreen phone, however I’ve always thought that TouchWiz was pretty blatantly mimicking iOS (it’s one of the reasons I’ve never bought a TouchWiz phone, but use a Galaxy Nexus), so a lot of the trade dress things are right on in my opinion. The Galaxy S on T-mobile (Vibrant), which I believe is the same as the international version, was just a ridiculous copy of the iPhone, I think you’re being disingenuous if you look at pictures of that device and a pre-iPhone 4 and don’t see it. On the other hand the jury found things like the Epic 4G, which has a hardware keyboard, rounded sides and 4 hardware buttons, to infringe on hardware design, which is absurd. So while I don’t agree with the verdict in it’s entirety, Samsung should definitely be on the hook for some of it.

    • Jimmy_Jo

      I agree. I love my SGSIII but I can tell they were influence by Apple with the older models. But also, some of those patents are bogus or prior art. This is sad.

  • vforvortex

    As its been said many times before, the patent system is broke. They need to find out how apple has been getting these patents approved when there are clearly prior art evidence and industry wide use.

    • Homncruse

      Back room deals.

      • Nick Gray

        Doubt that. While prior art can invalidate a patent, the patent office does not search very hard for prior art. Unless there is a similar patent already on file, the US patent office would need to do countless hours of research to find examples of prior art for each patent that comes across its desk.

        • Homncruse

          I’m not a lawyer, so I’m not sure if this is already the case, but how difficult would it be for the USPTO to have an “open opposition” period? In many places, when a new construction project is proposed or if a store/restaurant applies for a liquor license, there’s a notice posted with contact information for inquiries, complaints, etc. It would allow people who own prior art (or have evidence of prior art) to stop the patent from being approved in cases where it’s undue.

  • Josh

    [Quote]The software on the Apple side could not be placed into the processor on the prior art and vice versa. That means they are not interchangeable. That changed everything right there.[/Quote]

    This is absolute nonsense. If this argument were valid, any company (Apple, Samsung, Intel, AMD, etc) could design a processor, then write software which ran on that processor exclusively. They could then patent any number of arbitrary features of said software (pinch to zoom, a notification bar, the concept of a cursor, alarms, playing sound, displaying images, linked lists, memory addressing, basic arithmetic operations, literally anything…) while completely ignoring prior art.

    • Jesús Pineda

      By that very same reasoning, I you could try to get the code for iOS and try to run it on SGS hardware. Does it run? Nope. Then there is no infringement. This whole thing was dumb, those patents shouldn’t have been granted in the first place and the jurors’ ‘reasoning’ is rife with flaws.

    • Really?

      True… and i think you actually CAN if it is done in firmware..i.e. in assembly. But it wouldnt be in higher level languages such as C

  • Chris Lewis

    listen to what he says at 15:40….

  • PGJ

    This is just horrible! And I thought the jurdict sounded fishy before hearing this…

    Saying that “In this country”, certainly sounds like they had a bias towards Samsung for not being American. I don’t think that jingoism belongs in the court room!

    Not considering prior art should invalidate the entire verdict! Why have a trial if they jury doesn’t consider the arguments presented by both sides, but instead decide to make up their own arguments?

    Three days of deliberation and the jury had to answer 700 questions, that’s about two minutes for each question. That is if they didn’t take any out time for other things, such as going over the jury instructions or discussing the evidence.

  • Bpear96

    I really dont think the UI and look of Samsung’s earlier phones was the real reason apple lost sales to Samsung. To be perfectly honest, if Samsung would have used a different ui and phone design or even stock android, i think they would have sold just as many phones. People bought the galaxy s devices, because they had very good specs, good marketing, available on all(most) major carriers. Apple just doesn’t want competition and they are getting scared. I mean look at the Galaxy SIII its UI looks close to nothing like iOS and the phone design definitely much different, yet its still selling like crazy, and i bet Apple will try to say the SGS3 is infringing on there product and stealing sales from them, but in reality its just DECENT (great) competition that apple hasn’t (or doesn’t want) been use to in the phone market. Samsung may have infringed apple, but i don’t think $1B is justifiable considering in my eyes samsung would have done just as good or almost as good if they never infringed apple. And from what ive heard the $1b is for apples “lose of sales”. Apple is such a hypocrite though, they have copied UI elements just as much as samsung has, i dont see how there getting away with this.

    • Bpear96

      If someone really wants a iphone, there going to buy an iphone. You have to be a complete idiot to by a Samsung product thinking its Apple.

      • Bpear96

        I normally would just ignore a typo like that, but im just imagining comments like “only an idiot misspells “buy” :D

  • masterpfa

    Trying to sound intelligent and knowledgeable still does not mean one is qualified to judge on patents.

    This could make it’s way to the supreme courts and that issue will be debated to infinitum, before a decision (through time constraints most likely) will force a final say in these patents.

    This chap really does believe him and his peers were qualified to hear this? I think not.
    700 questions answered and debated in 2 days I think not.

    Juries are there to judge on evidence produced not for opinions

  • cb2000a

    Good stuff for Samsung’s appeal. Apple’s lawyers must be cringing.

  • masterpfa

    I should add that in my opinion the first thing I saw when I saw the Galaxy S was “Trying too much to look like an iPhone” and as a result I steered well clear off this phone. I personally never wanted an iPhone and wanted an iPhone look-a-like even less.

    • Nick Gray

      While I have to agree with your comment, the interview doesn’t realy talk about the trade dress and design patents that much. I’m sure we all agreew that Samsung overstepped its bounds when it designed the Galaxy S and Galaxy S II, but infringement on Apple’s utility patents is a whole other issue.

      • masterpfa

        My comment was meant to demonstrate that I am not a Biased Samsung fan, who believes they can do no wrong.

  • kwills88

    i hate to even say it, but this seems like the classic case of an American court system, protecting an American Corporation.

    • Terence G

      I agree but its ironic considering “American corporation” manufactures all its products overseas…

  • Erik of Stockholm

    I have the real deal (iPhone 4S). Nuff said, chumps. Android and Samsung will never be catching up to their idol. Apple is no1

    • J D

      Are you also an artist/barrista?

    • Nick Gray

      Check all the latest stats. iPhone sales are down, Android has more than 50% of smartphone market share and the SGSIII is the best selling phone of 2012 already. good for you for liking your iPhone, but please, please, please do some research on the topics you’re talking about.

  • Mix

    Is it difficult to IP ban….?

    Android and Me should jump on that ship and hand out some bans.

  • Raptor

    Imagine….If all Android phones will be banned….

    Then this site will have nothing to sell.

    Explains why salespeople are not happy

    • Nick Gray

      never going to happen. None of the patents which Apple sues Samsung with were directly related to Android. Samsung customized Android with extra features which made their devices look and feel like the iPhone.

  • boy

    Whatever final decision outcome from jugde,hope after this battle lawsuit could b banned stupid patents technology ppl could strict consumer from consuming 1 product only.the more choice,the more competition,the better offer for end user.

  • tagstar

    The scope of these patent issues are beyond the comprehension of these Jurors.

    If the Jurors get through all 100 pages they could get out of there.

    They are only getting paid ~$10 a day.

  • Susan R.

    > but it sounds like the jury made a decision based on interpretations
    > of the law which simply are not true.

    Samsung’s foolish law team *ALLOWED* that to happen.
    It made Apple’s job much, much easier.

  • Donna

    What was the jury’s real job?

    1. Samsung is guilty.
    2. Samsung in innocent.
    3. Extremely generic patents were incorrectly issued to Apple and are now null and void.

    Could the jury have picked #3????

    • Nick Gray

      I think the jury should have found at least one of Apple’s patents to be invalid based on prior art. Based on the interview, after the foreman decided he could defend the one Apple patent, he decided to defend them all. That’s not the jury’s duty. Their job is not to defend Apple or defend Samsung. They need to be unbiased is their decision so that the evidence can shine through.

  • Really?

    You guys… stop being all opinionated assholes before you understand the issues. The ’460 patent is a SAMSUNG patent. It was unfortunate this man used the term “prior art” too loosely or did not express himself well (a common idiosyncrasy for someone who DOES have a technical background). He was expressing that Apple did NOT infringe on Samsung’s patent because Apples implementation of the ’460 cannot run on the processor of Samsung’s claims in Samsungs ’460 patent. It was NOT a question of the validity of the patent, but whether or not the patent applied to Apple’s accused implementation of ’460

    Sheesh. Give this guy a break. He just got minimum wage to serve on this grueling trial when he can do what most of us do.. try to get out of jury duty whenever a notice comes his way.

  • Jery hall

    Whatever happens at Samsung’s trial is an excellent thing for all of us.the decision will send a positive message to the market to spur innovation to differentiate itself from Apple. The worst that could have happened to Apple is that manufacturers will finally understand they do not need too produce Apple look alike products to win hearts of consumers. Now, the delay granted to Samsung til the 16/12, may blow sales for Apple as many might want to get a Samsung device for Christmas before it is banned.

  • Derek

    Other jurors have said that they had their mind made up from Day 1 that Samsung was going to lose and that’s why the entire deliberations took less than one day. Even Apple’s lawyers were shocked that it happened so quickly and they won so thoroughly. The fix was in! But you knew a Korean company wasnt going to get a fair trial in California, home of Apple.

  • MoSDeeb

    After reading many stories on this case, it seems a judgement against the jury’s own will be a giant uphill battle for Samsung. I do not think ordinary people should have been on the jury for this case. Experts should have been the ones to decide.

  • darko

    The juror has gone way beyond his remit.

    His task is to decide, based on the evidence and the court’s instructions, whether the allegations should stand or should fail. If there are doubts then the foreman is charged with the responsibility of asking the court for guidance.

    This guy has taken it upon himself to insert himself into the process. He is (mis)advising his peers on matters of patent law, his is talking about “sending a message”.

    Now he’s got Samsung irritated because he’s cost them $1b. When Samsung uses his words to launch an appeal then Apple will be irritated too. By doing the rounds he is also undermining the judge so Koh is probably going to be irritated with him as well.

    I really hope this cat knows what he is doing. Even now someone’s going to be going through his bin bags looking for skeletons.

    And what’s with “in this country” all the time.

  • pjamies

    It’s funny to see the 2 different sides comment on what Vel Hogan states in this 16min interview. On one hand this site takes Samsung’s/Google’s Side, and if you read the comments on Apple Rumors site, you obviously hear Apples side to his commentary. Both have legitimate claims to what his comments are, and both swing each way.
    No, I am not an Apple (iPhone) lover, and all of this patent crap leaves me wondering who really wins in these battles?? The Lawyers most likely!! lol
    Who has the most to lose/win in these fights is a question better answered by each side’s marketing department, as most of this is marketing hype!!
    Bet you did not think of that correct?? Well it is ..
    Let’s take a look at why? First off .. you could not pay enough $$ to get the exposure these 2 giants have just gotten over the last few weeks or so …
    Samsung makes a major penny producing much of what iPhones/iPads contain internally, so Apples gains in iphone/iPad sales is a boost to Samsung’s earning sheets, either way they both win …
    and for what? a measly Billion dollars which will be contested in the courts over the next 2+years …
    Yes, Samsung will have to make some changes to their s/w and hardware, but for all of the hype that this has caused, you would be stupid to think that either of these 2 giants has really lost anything in the whole process.
    BUT, if you want to get technical, Apple probably has the most to lose, as Samsung and Google’s underlining business structure (lines of business) far exceed Apples (lob).