Google's former Android head, Andy Rubin, may be asked to testify on behalf on Samsung during the second Apple v. Samsung patent trial
beginning today, says the Wall Street Journal
. Samsung is reportedly challenging Apple's assertion that the iPhone was completely groundbreaking by pointing out that Google was already working some of the contested technologies before the iPhone shipped. It notes
that except for slide-to-unlock, all of the patents Apple is asserting -- related to hyperlinking, background sync, Siri's universal search functions, and auto-complete -- are Android features.
Rubin in fact briefly worked for Apple between 1989 and 1992. Other Google engineers are also listed as possible defense witnesses, such as VP of Engineering Hiroshi Lockheimer.
The second trial is due to tackle more recent devices by the two companies, such as the Galaxy S III, Galaxy Note II, and Galaxy Tab 10.1, as well as iPhones, iPads, and iPod touches from the iPhone 4 on through the iPhone 5 and iPad 4. Like the previous trial, the new one is unlikely to have much effect on the companies' sales -- any injunctions would affect products that are marginal or discontinued.