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Samsung & Apple exchange harsh words as patent trial begins

Apple and Samsung lawyers have addressed the jury for the first time in their landmark patent case, with Apple arguing that its "magical" designs deserve protection and Samsung countering that it is also an innovator.

Before Apple and Samsung presented their opening arguments, however, Judge Lucy Koh granted a motion to exclude some of Samsung's evidence. That includes references to Sony and Samsung's independent creation (i.e. instances in which products were developed without knowledge of similar products being developed by Apple).

"The Judge's exclusion of evidence on independent creation meant that even though Apple was allowed to inaccurately argue to the jury that the F700 was an iPhone copy, Samsung was not allowed to tell the jury the full story and show the pre-iPhone design for that and other phones that were in development at Samsung in 2006, before the iPhone," a Samsung spokesman said in a statement. "The excluded evidence would have established beyond doubt that Samsung did not copy the iPhone design. Fundamental fairness requires that the jury decide the case based on all the evidence."

Samsung is also not allowed to bring up a reference that Shin Nishibori, an Apple design inventor, made regarding Sony's influence on the iPhone. In a deposition, Nishibori referred to a conversation he had with Apple's design chief, Jonathan Ive, in which Ive reportedly asked Nishibori what a Sony-made iPhone would look like.

Tim Bradshaw, a reporter with the Financial Times, was in the courtroom today and live-tweeted much of the day-long proceedings. On the Apple front, Bradshaw reported that Apple speak is not limited to the company's press events, with the company's attorneys arguing that the iPhone "changed phones forever," and speculating that it was hard to remember what phones looked like before the iPhone. Still, Bradshaw said Apple was "pretty methodical" in its opening, with "no bombast."

Apple said its efforts on the iPhone began in 2003, "less than 10 miles from this courthouse," Bradshaw tweeted. The company pointed to a 2010 quote from Samsung in which an executive reportedly said that Samsung was in the midst of a design crisis, as well as an internal document that said copying Apple's hardware is easy.

Apple is basically arguing that someone might see a Samsung smartphone and mistake it for an iPhone, which it reiterated today, Bradshaw tweeted. Stealing intellectual property is similar to physically stealing something, the company said.

When Samsung got up, it argued that Apple did not invent the rectangular screen, and showed off different versions of its phones, which do not look like the iPhone, Bradshaw tweeted. Samsung said that smartphone technology evolves over time, with many manufacturers simply producing what the customer wants.

Samsung said that 26 per cent of the iPhone is made with Samsung parts; "who's the real innovator?" it quipped.

For more, check out the early iPhone and iPad prototypes disclosed in Samsung's filing.