Some Evidence Suggests Samsung May Not Have Copied The iPhone, But Was Inspired By The Device

Posted Oct 8, 2012

Back in late August, Apple won a jury trial that would see that Samsung owed them $1.05 billion over design patent infringement.  The jury found reason to believe that Samsung copied designs from the Apple iPhone.

According to Groklaw, Samsung may have told designers to “make something like the iPhone.”  A senior executive at Samsung that presided over internal meetings said something like “Let’s make something like the iPhone.”  Essentially the iPhone has become the standard benchmark.

“When everybody (both consumers and the industry) talk about UX, they weigh it against the iPhone. The iPhone has become the standard. That’s how things are already.”  However there does not seem to be exact orders to copy features from the Apple iPhone.

Another document ends with “To everyone, he said you must think at least six months ahead; be the solution to the problems that related departments come looking for. Be people with creativity.”

Notes from the same meeting said:  “Designers rightly must make their own designs with conviction and confidence; do not strive to do designs to please me (the president); instead make designs with faces that are creative and diverse.”

In the Galaxy S3, some of the notes said:  “Our biggest asset is our screen. It is very important that we make screen size bigger, and in the future mobile phones will absorb even the function of e-books.”

That means that the Samsung executives were clear about how a large screen would differentiate their phones from other devices.

However, I wrote an earlier article about one of the core images that was used in the lawsuit: what Samsung smartphones looked like before the iPhone and what they looked like after the iPhone.  There may be some details that were never noted down about what the final Samsung products should look like.