Apple, Samsung once again unable to pare down patent case

Lack of resolution from the latest meeting between the warring tablet and smartphone makers means the jury will likely decide the companies' high-stakes dispute.

Steven Musil
Steven Musil Night Editor / News
Steven Musil is the night news editor at CNET News. He's been hooked on tech since learning BASIC in the late '70s. When not cleaning up after his daughter and son, Steven can be found pedaling around the San Francisco Bay Area. Before joining CNET in 2000, Steven spent 10 years at various Bay Area newspapers.
Expertise I have more than 30 years' experience in journalism in the heart of the Silicon Valley.

Apple and Samsung told a federal judge yesterday that they have been unable to reduce the number of claims against each other in their ongoing patent infringement lawsuit, increasing the likelihood that the jury will decide their high-stakes dispute.

Despite being "pathologically optimistic" that the two companies would settle the case before it reached the jury's hands, U.S. District Court Judge Lucy Koh earlier this week had once again asked them to pare down the claims against one another. In May, "="">Koh ordered Apple's Tim Cook and Samsung's Choi Gee-sung, as well as their general counsels, to meet in San Francisco to try to work out their patent dispute.

"The parties have met and conferred about case narrowing, but have not been able to narrow their cases further," according to a joint statement issued by the companies published by Bloomberg. CNET has contacted Apple and Samsung for comment and will update this report when we learn more.

"Are there trades that can be made?" Koh asked the companies' lawyers in her efforts to shorten the instructions she'll have to provide to the jurors who will decide the case. Those instructions currently constitute a 100-page document that Koh estimates will take about an hour and a half to get through.

Earlier in the week, Koh had asked the two companies to speak once more about settling their case, suggesting that the jury might penalize both companies.

"I see risks here for both sides," Koh said this week.

Apple claims that Samsung's copying of "the look and feel" of its iPad tablet and iPhone smartphone has cost the Cupertino, Calif.-based company more than $2.5 billion.

The trial, now in its third week, is in its final stages. Closing arguments are expected to begin Tuesday, with jury deliberation to follow.

Complete coverage: Apple vs. Samsung, a battle over billions