Apple marketing chief takes to the stand, briefly

Apple SVP Phil Schiller took to the stand today for just a few minutes to talk about the company's product strategy in Apple's trial against Samsung.

Josh Lowensohn
Josh Lowensohn Former Senior Writer
Josh Lowensohn joined CNET in 2006 and now covers Apple. Before that, Josh wrote about everything from new Web start-ups, to remote-controlled robots that watch your house. Prior to joining CNET, Josh covered breaking video game news, as well as reviewing game software. His current console favorite is the Xbox 360.
Apple SVP Phil Schiller at one of the company's keynote presentations. James Martin/CNET Networks

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- Testimony from Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, Phil Schiller, was cut short today, but not before the executive made claims that the company did not rely on market research.

"We don't use any customer surveys, focus groups, or typical things of that nature," Schiller said. "That plays no role in the creation of the products."

The claims come on the heels of court filings unearthed earlier this month that show Apple's internal market research from May of last year. That study focused on iPhone owners, asking them specifically why they purchased an iPhone over competing products.

Late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs famously denounced market research, saying "it's hard for customers to tell you what they want when they've never seen anything remotely like it."

On the stand, Schiller took a similar line.

"We never go and ask the customer 'what features do you want in the next product?'" he said. "It's not the customer's job to know. We that accumulate ourselves."

Schiller is the highest ranking Apple officer to testify in the trial against Samsung, which has both companies swinging patent-infringement claims at each other. The trial, which kicked off after jury selection yesterday, is slated to last four weeks. Schiller continues his testimony this Friday when court is back in session.