We’ve known pretty much all along that Google was going to be more involved this time around in the Apple-Samsung trial. Many of the features Apple claims infringe on its software patents are baked right into Android, so of course it would be in the Mountain View company’s best interest to become much more involved.

But I’m not sure anyone knew the extent of Google’s involvement until yesterday, when a lawyer for the tech giant said that it had reached an agreement with Samsung to foot the bill for a large portion of its legal fees. It also told the Korean firm it would cover much of the damages, should it be found guilty of infringement…

Recode’s Ina Fried has the scoop:

Apple played deposition testimony from Google lawyer James Maccoun, who verified emails in which Google agreed to provide partial or full indemnity with regard to four patents as well as to take over defense of those claims.

Of the four patents Google over which offered to cover at least some costs, two were dropped from the case before the trial began. The two patents that remain in the case, the ’414 and ’959 patents, cover background synchronization and universal search, respectively.

For those who missed it, Apple is currently battling Samsung in a northern California courtroom in round two of a high-profile legal battle. Apple is suing Samsung for the infringement of 5 of its patents, and seeking $2 billion in damages. Samsung, for its part, is countersuing the Cupertino company for roughly $7 million.

Neither Google nor Samsung would get into the details of their arrangement, but it’s fairly clear that the search firm is playing a more integral role to Samsung’s defense than folks originally thought. It’s not the first time it’s done this—it’s helped HTC, Motorola and others in defense cases before—but it’s still worth noting.

Upon first seeing Google’s mobile OS back in 2010, Steve Jobs famously became angry and said “I’m going to destroy Android because it’s a stolen product. I’m willing to go thermonuclear war on this.” And looking at the way this Samsung feud has played out, it would appear that Tim Cook and Co. still share the sentiment.

  • Rowan09

    Samsung admitted guilt when they had a guy go on the stand to say we shouldn’t have to pay billions, but instead pay $30 million.

    • Hyr3m

      Say I hit you on your bike with my car by pure accident because a drunk driver cut me off and I had to avoid him at the last second. Your bike is destroyed but you’re unscathed. You take me to court and say “if he’s found guilty, he should pay 1 million dollars because of the damage done to my bike and the opportunities I missed at my job because I arrived late and because of the psychological trauma”. I say “only the bike was damaged, if I’m found guilty then I should only pay for the bike”.
      Apple said “if they’re found guilty they owe us 2.2 billions” without proving guilt. Samsung said “nah, if found guilty that would not be worth more than 38 millions” without admitting guilt.

      • Rowan09

        Your defensive should never be if I’m guilty I should get whatever the decision. Samsung’s defense is weak to make such a statement. Apple did win the case for 2 Billion but Samsung appealed so it’s on going. It’s clear that Samsung did use Apples patents so there’s nothing to prove in that regard, but Samsung’s defense is saying it’s not the main reason why they are popular now. Usually when someone infringes on someone else’s property they can get 100% of the profits made. The issue here is Apple proving these patents gave Samsung an edge over the others.

  • Tony

    Making more and more sense why yahoo is trying to get in good with apple. A complete shift could happen.

    • ✪ aidan harris ✪

      Google would still develop for Apple and iOS and Mac devices even if Yahoo became the default. It might just mean that their apps are featured less. I think it’s obvious Googles priority is Android though. How long did it take them to update Google Authenticator…And then fix their useless update that deleted everyones logins…

  • Taf Khan

    Google backed Samsung losing only opens the floodgates for when Apple go after Google.. tut tut . You copy you pay. Simple!