Apple v Samsung dispute reveals secret images of early iPhone designs

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In the days preceding the headline-grabbing patent trial in California this week, Samsung and Apple submitted various filings to the court - and leaked documents have now surfaced depicting a range of old iPhone prototypes.

The images come from a Samsung file and make for intriguing viewing for those who have tracked the legendary phone's evolution. In the iPhone (and iPod touch) prototype file, titled Photographs of Apple Phone Models, there are various images of early iPhones. Many resemble the first and second-generation iPhone we all know, but there are also a few that take a different route. There's the boxy, rectangular iPhone in silver with black edges, and one with more rounded edges. There's one with a more octagonal shape and jeweled design and a thinner iPhone with a screen that takes up more of the front panel. Another still shows a grooved, silver bottom edge, presumably to help the user get a better grip on the smartphone.

There are also shots of the early iPad, which show a boxy, thicker tablet. For more, check out the slideshow.

Samsung doesn't actually want the jury to see these images "as they are irrelevant and unfairly prejudicial because none of the images shown ... were produced to Samsung at any time during the case."

The exhibit also "disclose[s] only selected images of Apple prototypes rather than the actual physical objects themselves," Samsung argued. "Such reliance is misleading. It prevents the jury from evaluating the prototypes and instead limits the jurors' understanding of the designs to the specific features shown in the photographs that Apple has selected."

Samsung argued that understanding "the entire design is critical" when making a decision regarding patents.

In another document, Apple shows Samsung phones in order to prove that Samsung copied the iPhone, but Samsung said Apple's selection is a "self-serving and wholly misleading picture of Samsung's design history."

The two sides are also battling over the opening slides each company plans to use; Judge Lucy Koh allowed and threw out several slides on both sides.