The 7 men and 3 women who will decide Apple v. SamsungJuly 31, 2012: 7:36 AM ET
They include a social worker, a systems engineer and a would-be video game designer
FORTUNE -- Oh to be a fly on the wall in the jury room for this case.
After more than two years of thermonuclear rhetoric, high-priced legal posturing and billions of dollars in smartphone sales, the question of whether Samsung illegally copied Apple's (AAPL) iPhone and iPad patents -- and how much Apple owes Samsung for using its mobile communications technology -- is finally going before a jury.
The 10 Santa Clara, Calif., county residents who will decide this case (barring a last-minute settlement) were chosen Monday from a field of 74 prospective jurors. From reporting by AllThingsD's Ina Fried, CNET's Josh Lowenson, Reuters' Dan Levine, The Verge's Bryan Bishop and the Mercury News' Howard Mintz, we know a little something about the seven men and three women. They include:
- A social worker
- A systems engineer
- A mechanical engineer
- A Gilroy city worker
- An AT&T supervisor
- A store operations manager for a cycling retailer
- A benefits and payroll manager who works with startups
- An unemployed video gamer who wants to get a software degree so he can develop video games
The voir dire included questions about what type of mobile phone, computer or tablet each prospective juror used, whether they owned Apple stock, how they used the Web, and what they knew about the case. Several had read Walter Isaacson's Steve Jobs biography. Almost everybody used Google search, although one prospective told the judge "I Yahoo a lot."
Nearly everybody used one or more products made by the litigants, from a 30-year old Samsung microwave to more than a few iPhones. One prospective juror, who turned out to be an interface designer at Google (GOOG), confessed to owning two Samsung smartphones, two iPads, a Samsung Galaxy tablet, and a Barnes & Noble Nook Color.
Among the prospectives who were excused was a man who said he didn't see how this case was different from Apple versus Microsoft (MSFT), an engineer with his name on 120 patents, a man whose son worked for Apple legal, and an Apple employee who said he had already decided who should win.
Apple asked that the Google employee be dismissed for cause because Google makes the operating system that runs the Samsung devices at issue in the case, but judge Lucy Koh declined, saying that he had answered her questions fairly and truthfully. At the end of the day, Apple had to use one of its four preemptory challenges to have the Google guy removed.
The jury will hear opening statements on Tuesday.
See also: The patent trial of the century.