Forstall on inertial scrolling: Steve told Samsung ‘here’s something we invented. Don’t copy it. Don’t steal it’


We have brought you updates on the Apple vs. Samsung trial all week with yesterday’s highlight being a testimony from Apple’s expert design witness, former President of the Industrial Designers Society of America Peter Bressler. Last week, we told you Apple Senior Vice President of iOS Software Scott Forstall testified in the case, but Network World discovered some interesting bits today from Forstall’s deposition from a few months ago. While noting the three key multi-touch patents involved in the case (381′ related to “rubber banding,” ‘915 related to determining one-finger scroll vs. multi-touch gestures, and ‘163 related to double tap to zoom), Network World posted excerpts from Forstall’s highly redacted deposition. The SVP appears to have claimed the now-late CEO Steve Jobs once told Samsung not to copy or steal the inertial scrolling, rubber band invention:

Returning to the Forstall’s deposition, Apple’s iOS guru is asked about discussions Steve Jobs seemingly had with Samsung over the rubber banding patent…Forstall responded:

I don’t remember specifics. I think it was just one of the things that Steve said, here’s something we invented. Don’t – don’t copy it. Don’t steal it….Rubber banding is one of the sort of key things for the fluidity of the iPhone and – and all of iOS, and so I know it was one of the ones that Steve really cared about… I actually think that Android had not done rubber banding at some point and it was actually added later. So they actually went form sort of, you know, not yet copying and infringing to – to choosing to copy, which is sad and distasteful…

Regarding whether the feature was discussed in subsequent meetings with Samsung:

But I can’t give you a specific recollection of – of Steve, you know, going over rubber banding with – with them in those meetings or not… I expect it came up, because it’s one of the key things we talked – you know, he and I talked about, but I don’t know if it came up there.

It is unclear which meetings Forstall is referring to due to the large amount of redactions in the documents, but Network World noted that court documents revealed previously that Apple offered to license Samsung patent ‘381 in November 2010. Forstall also described meetings Jobs had with Samsung when questioned about iOS icon designs:

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