As it begins a second day of deliberations in the Apple v. Samsung patent battle, the jury charged with evaluating the case has decided to work an extra hour.
The nine-person jury had been scheduled to work from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. local time, taking lunch at the San Jose courthouse, and followed that schedule on their first day of deliberations. But going into their work on Thursday, they indicated to the court they would be staying an extra hour. The court released this information to reporters.
It’s impossible to know what’s going on inside the jury room and the reason for their decision — the jury is strictly limited in whom they can speak to about this case — but there are a couple of possibilities, according to Roy Futterman, a director at DOAR Litigation Consulting and a clinical psychologist who works on trial strategies and the mindset of jurors.
“The first is that the jury has decided it’s very complicated and they have taken it upon themselves to have more time, to hunker down and get into the details,” Futterman said.
“This is the most likely reason. They know they have a lot of work and they’ve said, ‘let’s do it.’ They are probably relieved to be able to talk to each other and get down to work after three weeks of listening. It’s a sign they are up for [the work].”
“The other possibility is that they want to get it over with. It’s not likely, but they might want to spend more time on this so they can be done by the weekend,” he said.
Futterman said juries asking for more time to deliberate isn’t unheard of but it is a little unusual.
“A lot of time, people think juries are eager to get out of there. I think this shows they are taking their job very seriously.”
The case revolves around seven Apple patents — four covering design elements and three covering the way devices work — and five Samsung patents related to cellular technology. Apple is accusing Samsung and two of its subsidiaries of infringement on almost 30 handsets, and the jury needs to come up with rulings on each phone and each company.
As a result they have a complex verdict form that demands more than 700 individual decisions be made. Before they sat down to begin deliberations they received 109 pages of jury instructions, which took more than two hours to read to them in court earlier this week.
The case is 11-01846, Apple v. Samsung, at the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in San Jose.
Martyn Williams covers mobile telecoms, Silicon Valley and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Martyn on Twitter at @martyn_williams. Martyn’s e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org