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Oracle may get as little as $32.3m in Android lawsuit

updated 05:50 pm EDT, Tue March 20, 2012

Oracle steered to much lower Google patent sum

Requests for Oracle to lower its damage requests in its lawsuit against Google have pushed its claims on Android damages far lower than it originally wanted. Having wanted figures that approached $2.6 billion, it has come to the view that the total damages it's owed are less than $50 million. Even when using a method that favors Oracle, the two patents and group of copyrights would claim damages of $46.6 million.

Google's modeling would have it pay $37.5 million, while Oracle when using Google's approach would go even lower at $32.3 million, although it left room for copyright damages to go higher.

The findings would all but quash Oracle's original intent to derive a major source of income from Android with both large damages and ongoing royalties for using Java code without permission. Google eventually stopped resisting the idea that it hadn't properly licensed Java, particularly after Oracle could use an incriminating e-mail showing that executives were aware, but it has been trying to keep damages to where it can make an easy, one-time payment.

The Oracle case is one of the few where Google is being sued directly over patents and copyrights. Lawsuits from Apple and Microsoft are ultimately targeting Android as well, but they have been using proxy targets like Motorola and Samsung that directly profit instead. [via GrokLaw]

By Electronista Staff


  1. jpellino

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Oct 1999



    I'm trying to gin up sympathy about the "as little as" part, but it's hard for the average person to do when it's directly attached to the "$32.3M" part.

    So, no.

  1. chas_m



    Punitive damages

    While the actual damages may be a modest sum, unless there are HUGE punitive damages for Google have basically stolen code and gotten away with it, it will be an open invite for the rest of the industry to plunder anyone who comes up with something in any way original with impunity, essentially devaluing patents to zero. Plus, I think we all know the name of the one of the VERY few companies in technology today that comes up with anything truly original anymore.

    The judge needs to send both Google and the rest of the industry (I'm looking at you, Same-sung) that "steal now, maybe pay a little later" cannot become the industry standard. This needs to cost Google dearly, particularly since they got caught red-handed.

    PS. Anyone who still doesn't think Google is evil, please feck off.

  1. Salty

    Professional Poster

    Joined: Jul 2005



    The question shouldn't be how much the damages are. Really Oracle doesn't have damages, they're not in the cell phone market. The problem is Google should have licensed their code and didn't. They shouldn't just be paid what they should have been licensed. Google should have to pay something for the theft.

  1. wrenchy

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Nov 2009


    $32.3 Million?


  1. DaJoNel

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Aug 2010


    $32.3 million

    Is Google's pocket change. They need to feel some pain from what they did to Oracle. I wish lawsuits would end with justice, but alas, they all seem to end with companies throwing around a handful of millions. Believe me, money will not make up for what Google has taken from Oracle.

  1. tightzeit

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jul 2006


    I'm not sure

    of how they calculated the modelling and I am not a lawyer, but wasn't a BU student ordered to pay $675k for downloading 30 songs and then sharing them online?

    Google - a pty ltd - used someone else's IP and passed it off as their own and distributed it in their code to how many people? Last I checked it was over 300 million.

    30 songs at a dollar each is $30. Neither party directly profited, though google did indirectly profit a vast amount, they also profited by limiting their development time and product release date so there is an immediate up front saving which was large enough for the google execs to argue that it was worth just using it and seeing what happens.

    To fine an individual $675k for sharing $30 worth of songs (which can be collected in numerous other ways for free) from which he did not earn a cent, yet let google off with as little as $32m for over 300m activations based on IP that is knowingly owned by someone else and integral to the operation of the phone, and from which they make substantial income, is just absurd.

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001


    Re: $32.3 million

    Is Google's pocket change. They need to feel some pain from what they did to Oracle.

    What they did to oracle? What did they do, actually? You make it sound like they raped and pillaged the company or something. Maybe it turns out the supposed infraction isn't as much as Oracle claimed.

  1. wrenchy

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Nov 2009



    The only reason Oracle purchased Sun was to launch an IP/patent claim against Google to get money. Money money money. If Google had not taken interest in Java technology, Oracle wouldn't have even bothered with Sun.

    ... "from what they did to Oracle?"

    It's trOllacle's greed that put them in this spot. They spent an awful lot to buy Sun and spent a hefty amount to pay their lawyers and legal fees to try to "GET' Google.

    It's starting to look like a bad episode of Strorage Wars where Oracle buys a locker for big $$$ and finds a couple of chests with some dirty wool socks and a crack pipe.

    SUCK IT Ellison! Die patent troll!

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