Login

The Oracle vs. Google trial: updates, analysis, testimony, and more

Phillip Burton Federal Building and US Courthouse

Oracle's infringement case against Google over the use of Java APIs in Android has now moved to the trial phase. We've collected all of our daily reports, analysis, and courtroom coverage for you right here.

46 updates and 6063 comments below.

Sep 05 8:40a

Oracle to pay Google $1.13m in legal costs following failed Android lawsuit

Oracle has been ordered to pay Google $1,130,350 in legal costs following the broad failure of its long-running patent and copyright infringement lawsuit over Android. Google had originally asked for more than $4 million to cover the total costs of the quixotic suit, including significant fees for a third-party e-discovery service paid to surface and copy relevant documents. While the payment was cut back by Judge William Alsup, he was unequivocal in declaring Google the "prevailing party" in...

Continue reading »

Aug 27 11:31a

Google discloses paid bloggers and journalists, says Stanford professor Mark Lemley is outside counsel

Google has followed up with a judge's order to disclose anyone it might have paid to influence coverage of its trial against Oracle, and the list includes a well-known Stanford professor who is often quoted without mentioning his relationship to Google. Google had initially told the court it hadn't paid anyone to comment on the case, but the judge ruled Google had "failed to comply" with his request and ordered the company to provide a more detailed list.

All these patent lawsuits have led to...

Continue reading »

Aug 20 1:18p

Judge: Google 'failed to comply' with order to disclose paid journalists and bloggers

Earlier this month Judge William Alsup ordered Oracle and Google to disclose any journalists or bloggers either has paid that could have commented on the Oracle v. Google case. Both parties responded last week — but Judge Alsup didn't think Google was completely forthright, and has asked the company to try again by the end of the week.

In a order filed today, Alsup flatly states that "Google has failed to comply" with his original request. Google had said in its initial response that the...

Continue reading »

Aug 17 4:54p

Oracle tells court patent blogger Florian Mueller is a 'consultant,' Google says it doesn't pay to influence media

Oracle has admitted to the court that it retains the frequently-cited Florian Mueller of the popular blog FOSS Patents as a consultant. The official disclosure comes a week after the judge in Oracle's lawsuit against Google took the extraordinary step of ordering both parties to reveal any paid journalists or bloggers on their payrolls. Both companies filed their responses today, and Mueller is the only person named in either filing.

"Mr. Mueller is a frequent critic of Oracle."

Oracle notes...

Continue reading »

Aug 07 3:44p

Google and Oracle ordered to disclose bloggers and journalists they paid to influence coverage (update)

Google vs. Oracle is wrapping up, but a surprising court order has just been issued by Judge William Alsup demanding both companies to reveal which bloggers and journalists they have compensated. The judge appears to be concerned that evidence presented over the course of the case may have included commentary from bloggers and journalists that was directly or indirectly influenced by financial compensation. Most notably among this group is Florian Mueller of the blog FOSS Patents, who is...

Continue reading »

Jul 07 4:03a

Google demands Oracle reimburse over $4 million in costs for Android infringement trial

Last month Oracle declined to receive any statutory damages after the disappointing results in its infringement lawsuit against Google, but the search giant let it be known it wanted Oracle to cover its legal costs. This week Google counsel Robert Van Nest made good on the promise, filing an official request that Oracle reimburse the company for over $4 million in costs that it incurred over the course of the trial. The number covers transcripts, expert witness compensation, and more than...

Continue reading »

Jun 20 10:57p

Oracle declines copyright infringement damages from Google in anticipation of appeal

Today Oracle's legal team decided to forego any statutory damages in connection with its infringement case against Google. Last month Judge William Alsup ruled that the structure, sequence, and organization or the 37 Java APIs in the case — the cornerstone of Oracle's hopes for a big payday — weren't copyrightable. It left Oracle with two minor infringement counts in hand, related to Google's copying of Java code for Android, with a total possible payout of just $300,000. Computerworld...

Continue reading »

May 31 5:08p

Judge: Oracle Java API elements not copyrightable, related claims against Google dismissed

Things weren't looking good for Oracle after the jury found that Google hadn't infringed upon the company's patents in the second phase of the trial between the two behemoths, but the issue of infringement of the structure, sequence, and organization of 37 Java APIs was still up in the air. Judge William Alsup ended the discussion today, ruling that the SSO of the APIs is not covered under current copyright law — and dismissing Oracle's related infringement claims outright. The judge had...

Continue reading »

May 23 4:54p

Oracle vs. Google jury was deadlocked 9 to 3 in favor of Google on fair use decision

The jury returned its verdict in the patent phase of the Oracle vs. Google trial earlier this morning, and the jury's foreman has now provided some insight into the group's process — including the fact that the deadlocked vote on copyright fair use issue was heavily in favor of Google. Fremont resident Greg Thompson, 52, described a jury that was unpersuaded by Oracle's arguments, even though many members felt Google was not innocent of wrongdoing. "A lot of us had an underlying feeling...

Continue reading »

1:57p

Jury: Google did not infringe Oracle patents with Android

Over a week after it began deliberations, the jury has returned a verdict in the patent infringement case between Oracle and Google, finding that the search giant did not infringe upon Oracle's patents with Android. In play were infringement counts on eight different claims across two separate patents: RE38,104 and 6,061,520. Given the decision, there will be no need for a damages phase in connection with the patent claims, and with the recent agreement by Google and Oracle to postpone any...

Continue reading »

May 22 4:19p

Oracle vs. Google jury struggles with patent claims as deliberations enter second week

It took the Oracle vs. Google jury a week to reach its partial verdict on the copyright claims in the case, and the patent phase isn't moving any faster as the jury began its second week of deliberations today, with no sign of a verdict in sight. The last few days have seen the jurors submit a number of questions to the court — they had five yesterday alone — addressing the technical nuances of the alleged infringement of the '104 and '520 patent claims. Not only has the jury requested...

Continue reading »

May 16 1:22p

Oracle and Google take copyright damages out of the jury's hands

Yesterday Oracle counsel David Boies made a spur-of-the-moment suggestion that would prevent the jury from handling damages for Google's copyright infringement in Android, and keep Oracle's hopes for a substantive payout alive in the process. This morning both parties — and Judge William Alsup — agreed to the proposition. Under the agreement, any and all damages related to the two copyright infringement counts the search giant faces — at the moment, just for nine lines of rangeCheck...

Continue reading »

May 15 6:51p

Oracle makes 11th-hour proposal to keep big payday hopes alive

If there's one thing the Oracle vs. Google trial hasn't been short of, it's plot twists and turns. The trend continued today courtesy of Oracle counsel David Boies, who made a principled plea to Judge Alsup over what he felt Oracle was entitled to seek for Android's copyright infringement of Java — before proposing an alternate solution that could have the third phase of the trial postponed for weeks, if it happens at all.

The situation stems from the jury's partial verdict in connection...

Continue reading »

3:32p

Oracle: Google had its head in the sand with alleged patent infringement

Oracle and Google's attorneys wrapped up their closing arguments today, sending the jury on to determine whether Google had infringed two Oracle patents — but not before one of the jurors was removed from the trial altogether. The day started off at 7:30AM per the court's normal schedule, but things ground to a halt when word came that one of the 12 jurors had not yet arrived due to car problems. When it became clear the transportation issues were not going to be resolved, three options...

Continue reading »

May 14 4:10p

Patent testimony wraps up in Oracle vs. Google as damages phase looms

Oracle and Google rest their respective cases today in the patent phase of the infringement trial, marking what Judge Alsup called "a milestone" — but things are still far from over. Doctors David August and John Mitchell faced off in what amounted to a technical expert duel, each rebutting the other's testimony in connection with the two patents Oracle has accused Google of infringing. Closing arguments will begin tomorrow.

Several rulings this morning also provided a clearer picture of...

Continue reading »

May 11 4:34p

Google hit with second count of infringement as both sides struggle to shorten Oracle trial

It was the clearest indication yet of just exactly where this trial is headed. During the day's second recess, Google counsel Robert Van Nest huddled with Oracle attorneys David Boies and Michael Jacobs, all three talking in the middle of the courtroom. Brief snippets of conversation echoed; "that one's done," "he already said he was going to grant a JMOL," "look, how much is this going to cost?" After a day of dense testimony, heavy with phrases like current pool indices and byte offsets,...

Continue reading »

May 10 2:52p

Google pushes to drop damages phase of Java infringement trial

Google will be filing a motion for the damages phase of its infringement battle with Oracle to be dropped altogether as Judge William Alsup pushes both sides to "streamline" the rest of the process. In a hearing this morning, the judge addressed the rangeCheck infringement — the only count Google currently faces — saying that it wouldn't be a good use of the jury's time to have them deliberate on the amount of statutory damages when the maximum figure Oracle can be awarded is just...

Continue reading »

May 09 9:47p

Andy Rubin finishes patent testimony as former Sun VP challenges Jonathan Schwartz claims

While it may not have had the immediate implications of Judge Alsup rejecting Oracle's request for a fair use ruling, the patent portion of Oracle vs. Google wound on today. Andy Rubin made two appearances in the courtroom, once on the stand and another time via video playback — but the two Rubins didn't entirely agree with one another. As he did yesterday, Oracle counsel Michael Jacobs focused on a number of emails that contained references to Sun-owned patents. Rubin testified that...

Continue reading »

6:43p

Oracle's request for fair use ruling denied, Google down to one count of infringement

Following the jury's inability to decide on the issue of fair use in the Oracle vs. Google trial, Oracle asked the judge to rule on the issue as a matter of law (JMOL). Both sides engaged in oral arguments, but Judge William Alsup surprised the courtroom with an early decision, denying Oracle's request, saying that "it wouldn't be fair" given the evidence introduced in the trial.

While the jury found that Google had infringed upon Oracle's copyrights by using the sequence, structure, and...

Continue reading »

May 08 10:50p

Oracle vs. Google hits the patent phase: the opening statements

The first phase of the Oracle vs. Google trial came to an end yesterday, as unsatisfying and unresolved as it may have been. We've quickly moved on to phase two, which trades copyrights and APIs for patents and virtual machines. At issue are two Oracle patents: RE38,104 and 6,061,520 (we'll refer to them as ‘104 and ‘520 for convenience). Oracle is alleging that the Dalvik virtual machine — the very heart of Android itself — infringes on both. Let's take a look at what both parties...

Continue reading »

May 07 2:13p

Jury finds Google infringed Oracle copyrights in partial verdict; Google moves for mistrial

The jury in the Oracle vs. Google trial found Google liable of infringing Oracle's Java-related copyrights today, although it remained deadlocked on the critical issue of whether Google made fair use of the Java APIs. The fair use question has been unresolved since Friday, when the jury told Judge William Alsup that it couldn't reach a unanimous decision on the matter. The judge had instructed the jurors at that point to think things through over the weekend in the hopes that they could avoid...

Continue reading »

1:30p

Oracle vs. Google deliberations temporarily halted after juror is accused of discussing case over weekend

We'd been hoping to hear a verdict from the jury in the Oracle vs. Google trial today, but something unexpected happened instead: one of the jurors was accused of discussing the case over the weekend with her husband. Deliberations were immediately stopped after the issue came to light, and the juror that had raised concerns was brought into the courtroom. He reported that a fellow juror had stated she had knowledge of patent law through her husband; the juror that flagged the issue thought...

Continue reading »

May 04 3:40p

Oracle vs. Google jury reaches partial verdict; judge calls for additional deliberation

Yesterday one of the jurors in the Oracle vs. Google trial signaled that the jury was having difficulty making a decision — to the point that they were concerned a consensus wouldn't be reached at all. Today the jury notified Judge William Alsup via a note that it had reached a unanimous decision on all but one question, but was otherwise at "an impasse." However, upon entering the courtroom, the foreperson stated to Judge Alsup that not all members of the jury thought sending the note...

Continue reading »

May 03 6:55p

Oracle vs. Google jury possibly deadlocked?

Things just took an interesting turn in the courtroom for Oracle's copyright infringement case against Google: a juror has asked how the jury should proceed if a unanimous conclusion can't be reached and one individual won't change their stance. Judge Alsup was quick to point out that the note wasn't from the foreperson, and wasn't an official statement that the jury was tied up. In speaking with counsel from both Oracle and Google, Alsup floated the possibility that if the jury does indeed...

Continue reading »

Apr 30 3:33p

Oracle and Google make their closing arguments in Android infringement trial

The copyright phase of the Oracle vs. Google infringement trial has been winding on for two weeks, but we moved one step closer to resolution today with the attorneys for both sides presenting their closing arguments. Oracle attorney Michael Jacobs made his client's case, referring to the trial as being "mostly about Google's excuses." As evidence of Google's wrongdoing, Jacobs pointed to email exchanges that have surfaced throughout the trial, in which the likes of Eric Schmidt, Andy Rubin,...

Continue reading »

Apr 27 5:25p

Oracle and Google rest in copyright trial; Oracle CFO says 'it's hard to compete with free'

It's been an eventful week in the Oracle vs. Google trial; we've seen Eric Schmidt, three days of Andy Rubin, and revelations about the early days of Android thanks to some formerly-confidential Google documents. Today both parties rest their respective cases in the copyright phase of the battle, setting the stage for the patent and damages sections yet to come.

For much of the day it was a case of dueling doctors, with both Oracle and Google calling technical experts to the stand. The latter...

Continue reading »

Apr 26 4:13p

Former Sun CEO Jonathan Schwartz testifies for Google in Oracle trial

The copyright phase of the Oracle and Google trial has been going on for almost two weeks now, but today saw Google calling one of its last witnesses in its defense: former Sun CEO Jonathan Schwartz. Despite him having led the company whose copyright claims lay at the heart of the case, Schwartz's name has been increasingly invoked over the last few days, with several Google employees stating that they took his public praise as approval of Android's use of Java's APIs and class libraries.

"...

Continue reading »

12:35p

Google tries to win on a technicality, claims Oracle's Java copyrights were filed wrong

A new development has turned some heads in the Oracle vs. Google courtroom. Google's attorneys just asked to introduce two documents into evidence from the US Copyright Office that show there's no record of what code Oracle submitted in connection with the registration of Java 2 SE 1.4 and 5.0. If Google can convince the court the copyright registrations are somehow invalid or improper, Oracle's copyright case will change somewhat dramatically: the company can still prove Google infringed its...

Continue reading »

Apr 25 4:52p

Andy Rubin thought Sun would bring 'D players' and 'industry baggage' to Android

Although the Google / Oracle trial is endlessly entertaining drama with countless inside revelations, the actual dispute between the two companies over Java and Android at one time was extremely small: Sun wanted just $30-50 million for a Java license, by Eric Schmidt's estimation. So why didn't Google just pay? It wanted complete control over the Android platform, and it wasn't prepared to let Sun be involved. That's according to Andy Rubin, who wrote to Eric Schmidt in a 2006 email that he...

Continue reading »

4:15p

Android in early 2007 looked very different than it does today

When Google was in the thick of Android's development in 2006 and 2007 — long before the platform ever reached retail — it was a very different product, almost unrecognizable compared to the products we used today. Documents dated May of 2007 and made public during the course of Oracle's lawsuit against Google over its use of Java in Android show off a number of those preliminary user interface elements, prominently marked "subject to change," and you can see how this used to be a product...

Continue reading »

4:02p

Andy Rubin at the Oracle trial: I didn't expect Android to contribute greatly to Google's ad revenues

Google's Andy Rubin wrapped up his testimony in the Google vs. Oracle case this morning, but not before making some somewhat surprising statements about his expectations for the mobile operating system. When asked by Oracle attorney David Boies about what purpose Android serves for the search giant, he echoed CEO Larry Page, stating that the operating system "makes it easier to access Google services." Pressed as to whether he expected Android to contribute greatly to the company's ad...

Continue reading »

3:38p

Google wanted to sell 10m Android tablets a year in 2011, have 33 percent marketshare

According to a presentation given by Andy Rubin in July 2010, Google expected to sell some 10 million Android tablets a year in 2011 and 2012 and capture up to a third of the entire tablet market. Those are some lofty numbers, especially considering Google and Motorola hadn't yet shipped the Xoom tablet, which at the time was still a prototype device codenamed Stingray. (It's also notable that Google used a Morgan Stanley estimate that the entire tablet market would be 46m units in 2012;...

Continue reading »

3:05p

Google in 2007: 'a touchscreen cannot completely replace physical buttons'

How times change. From Google's Android specification documents in May of 2007 (several months after the iPhone's announcement):

3.11.2 Touchscreen

Touchscreens will be supported. However, the Product was designed with the presence of discrete physical buttons as an assumption, therefore a touchscreen cannot completely replace physical buttons.

By the time the T-Mobile G1 was released in late 2008, touchscreen support had moved from an afterthought to a central element of Android — and...

Continue reading »

2:58p

First Android revenue numbers revealed: $278.1m in 2010, iPhone more lucrative

The Google / Oracle trial continues to reveal a wealth of inside information about Android — in addition to seeing the earliest mockups of a "Google Phone" earlier today, we're also seeing how the platform was doing in 2010, courtesy of a quarterly review presentation given on July 12, 2010 by Andy Rubin and four of his deputies.

There's a staggering gap between ads and apps

The most interesting aspect of the presentation are the revenue numbers presented, since Google has never explained...

Continue reading »

2:26p

Google wanted to subsidize a $9.99 unlimited data plan for Android phones

In documents revealed during the Oracle v. Google trial today, Google mentioned to T-Mobile back in 2006 that it wanted to turn the carrier plan pricing structure on its head by underwriting part of the cost of an unlimited data package. By Google's math, customers would pay $9.99 a month for unlimited data — to subsidize the reduce cost, the company would forgo the commission it earned from T-Mobile for referring Android buyers to its online store. Google figured that its own services —...

Continue reading »

2:03p

This was the original 'Google Phone' presented in 2006

Two years before the T-Mobile G1 introduced the world to Android, Google presented carriers with the "Google Phone — a device that looked a lot more like the portrait QWERTY Android prototype shown in early 2008.

At the time, Google bemoaned that "basic phone user interfaces and the ability to integrate as a 3rd party are still a barrier," telling T-Mobile that Mountain View's expertise combined with the carrier's unlimited data plan would be a win-win. (Of course, six years later,...

Continue reading »

Apr 24 11:58a

Eric Schmidt's testimony from the Oracle v. Google trial

It's a day packed full of legal fun with Google's Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt following immediately on the heals of Andy Rubin's testimony in the Oracle v. Google trial. We're not sure exactly what the focus of Schmidt's testimony will be, but we imagine Oracle will continue its tactic of looking deeper into the intent of those at Google who ultimately gave the green light to use Java and its APIs in the Android operating system.

Once again, Bryan Bishop is live in the courtroom to give...

Continue reading »

11:11a

Andy Rubin's testimony from the Oracle v. Google trial (round two!)

The copyright infringement phase of the Oracle v. Google trial has been underway for a week now, but today we get a chance to hear testimony directly from Google's Android chief, Andy Rubin. Rubin is likely the one person who can paint the complete picture for us — from initial development through to the most recent version updates to the operating system. For example, evidence introduced at trial so far indicates Rubin was intimately involved in the original negotiations with Sun...

Continue reading »

Apr 23 7:31p

Oracle technical expert struggles in Android trial, Andy Rubin begins testimony

The second week of Oracle vs. Google kicked off this morning, with Andy Rubin making a brief appearance at the end of the day — but not before one of Google's attorneys grilled an Oracle technical expert, raising questions as to how thorough his investigation into the similarities between Java and Android had really been. Code-level comparisons between the two operating systems was the focus in general, starting with Square CTO Bob Lee. Having served as the core library development lead for...

Continue reading »

8:28a

Inside the Oracle vs. Google courtroom: questions, code, and a file cabinet

The infringement trial between Oracle and Google kicked off last week at the Phillip Burton Federal Building in San Francisco, and it's already featured appearances from Oracle CEO Larry Ellison, Google co-founder Larry Page, and an array of other witnesses. We've covered the strategy of both companies, but what about the experience of sitting inside the courtroom itself?

The judge vowed to have loud typists removed

Let's start with the most important part: as beautiful as the courtroom may...

Continue reading »

Apr 19 8:38p

Google's chief Java architect: it's 'likely' I copied Sun code found in Android, 'I'm sorry' if I did

Tim Lindholm wasn't the only witness to have something interesting to say on the stand today in Google and Oracle's ongoing trial. Google's "Java guru" Joshua Bloch also spoke, getting into the nitty gritty of Java code and APIs, and admitting via previously-taped deposition testimony that it was likely that some of the code he contributed to Android was indeed copied. Bloch worked at Sun for eight years before moving to Google in 2004; his LinkedIn page refers to him as the company's Chief...

Continue reading »

4:05p

Google engineer Lindholm: 'I had little involvement in Android'

As anticipated, today's schedule in the copyright phase of the Oracle v. Google infringement case included testimony from Tim Lindholm. Lindholm joined Google as a software engineer in 2005 and has gained some notoriety as the author of the 2010 email allegedly attempting to convince Android chief Andy Rubin that officially licensing Java was the best solution for Android:

"What we've actually been asked to do (by Larry and Sergei) is to investigate what technical alternatives exist to Java...

Continue reading »

Apr 18 2:38p

Larry Page: Android isn't critical, it's a delivery vehicle for Google services

Oracle completed its cross-examination of Google CEO Larry Page today in the copyright phase of the trial between the two Silicon Valley giants, and Page was quite candid about Android's importance to Google as a whole. When asked if he believed Android was a critical asset to Google around 2010, Page said: "I believe Android was very important for Google. I wouldn't say it was critical."

"I believe Android was very important for Google. I wouldn't say it was critical."

When asked whether...

Continue reading »

2:49a

Google's legal slides paint Oracle as a gold digger, Java as free and open software

Oracle's attorneys have made clear what the company is accusing Google of in its lawsuit over Android, but how is Mountain View planning to defend itself? We took a look through the slideshow presentation that accompanied Google's opening statement, and it paints quite a different picture than the one put forward by Larry Ellison's legal team. Google portrays Java as a language that is openly acknowledged to be free, upon which Google built Android using legitimate means. However, once...

Continue reading »

Apr 17 6:36p

Larry Page on the stand in Oracle trial: 'We didn't do anything wrong'

Oracle and Google's legal fight has finally made its way to the courtroom, with Oracle CEO Larry Ellison taking the stand earlier this morning. The other big name to appear was Google co-founder and CEO Larry Page, who was faced with a line of questioning vital to the case's shift from patent disputes to copyright infringement: namely, how did particular lines of Sun (now Oracle) code make their way into Android? Confronted with a slide from an Android strategy presentation in 2005, which...

Continue reading »

4:31p

Oracle considered buying RIM or Palm to get into the smartphone game

The long-awaited Oracle / Google trial is finally underway, and the Wall Street Journal just reported on some pieces of Oracle CEO Larry Ellison's testimony, including the fact that his company considered purchasing RIM or Palm as a means to get into the mobile phone marketplace. Ultimately, RIM was deemed too expensive at the time, and we all know that Palm was snapped up by HP. Additionally, Reuters is reporting that Oracle also considered partnering with an Android manufacturer like...

Continue reading »

2:33p

Oracle vs. Google Android trial begins with Oracle on the attack

As scheduled, Oracle's opening statement began yesterday in its patent and copyright infringement case against Google in a northern California federal court — with Oracle providing the public with a link to the presentation slides it used to map out its arguments for the jury. No surprise, Oracle's case immediately starts off by accusing Google of desperation, deceit and willful disregard for Oracle's intellectual property rights. The infamous 2010 email from Google engineer Tim Lindholm to...

Continue reading »

The Verge
X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

Spinner

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.