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The Sony device Samsung claims inspired the iPhone is a Walkman


Samsung is waging its legal battle against Apple in a California court and, in a move that angered Judge Lucy Koh, is sharing some of its rejected evidence with the media. Last week, the company went public with a brief that suggested Apple borrowed heavily from Sony when it designed the iPhone. As noticed by John Paczkowski of AllThingsD, the device behind this corporate intrigue is not a handset, but the Sony Walkman shown above.

The leaked brief focuses on a 2006 BusinessWeek interview with Sony's designers Yujin Morisawa and Takashi Ashida that was circulated in an internal Apple communication. Apple designers allegedly read this interview and used some of Sony's principles to design the iPhone. What many people missed is the fact that the interview is about the Sony Walkman NW-A1200, and, ironically, the salient information about design is in response to a question that asked whether Sony was inspired by the iPod. As Apple 2.0's Philip Elmer-Dewitt quips at the end of his article, "Apple wasn't copying Sony, dear bloggers. Sony was copying Apple."

[Via Daring Fireball]

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