Oracle lawsuit could force Google to charge a per-copy license fee for Android

“One of the best-kept secrets in the patent dispute between Oracle and Google is what Oracle demands in terms of compensation for past damages and on which terms (monetary and other conditions) Oracle might allow Google to continue to distribute its Dalvik virtual machine as a result of a settlement or, alternatively, if Oracle prevailed in court and obtained an injunction,” Florian Mueller reports for FOSS Patents.

“For the first time in this entire lawsuit (which began almost ten months ago), a publicly accessible document provides, despite some blackened passages, a pretty good indication as to how demanding Oracle is,” Mueller reports. “I have analyzed the situation and I can tell you up-front: the word ‘demanding’ is an understatement. The position on damages for past infringement taken by an Oracle expert appears to be such that Oracle would want Google to pay damages for past infringement that would in the worst case far exceed any money Google has made with Android so far — and would likely expect Google to pay even more going forward.

Mueller reports, “The two companies are not just miles but light years apart, and it could very well be that a defeat in court would require Google to make fundamental changes to its Dalvik virtual machine — changes that would likely affect many if not all existing Dalvik-based (.DEX) applications. But even in purely financial terms, there’s serious doubt as to whether Google would be able to meet Oracle’s requirements while continuing to make Android available without charging a per-copy license fee.”

“Interestingly, Google itself admits that it could have done a license deal with Sun (apparently before it was acquired by Oracle) but rejected its terms,” Mueller reports. “That refusal could now prove one of the worst mistakes in Google’s 13-year history as a company.”

Much more in the full article here.

Related articles:
U.S. judge sides with Oracle over Google in Android patent infringement language ruling – April 27, 2011
Apple CEO Steve Jobs hid iPad development from Google mole Eric Schmidt – April 12, 2011
37 Android-related patent lawsuits since 2010 – March 22, 2011
Android Java code likely to damage Google’s defense against Oracle’s patent infringement lawsuit – January 22, 2011
New evidence shows Google may have directly copied Oracle IP in Android – January 21, 2011
FOSS Patents: Google’s patent portfolio too weak to protect Android – January 20, 2011
Oracle: Google directly copied Java code in Android – October 28, 2010

42 Comments

  1. I’m betting that the failure to cut the deal with Sun was laid right at the feet of Eric Schmidt, and that’s why he is no longer CEO. If this torpedos Android, as it is threatening, it will set Google back at least 5 years.

  2. Karma is a bitch & Google is a thief.
    Larry Ellison, Oracle founder/CEO, friend of Steve Jobs & former Apple board member, wants a hunk of Google’s ass for Christmas.

  3. DEADLY: “Google itself admits that it could have done a license deal with Sun (apparently before it was acquired by Oracle) but rejected its terms,”

    Maybe we WON’T be seeing competition worthy Android iPad wannabes in 2012! This is a total game changer.

    1. yeah this part WILL bite Google in the ass hard.
      they are betting on the fact they don’t charge money… which won’t fly either.

      Gonna love the day android’s everywhere get remotely turned off, for good.

  4. Regarding Oracle, they’re no heroes these days either:

    1) Oracle has abandoned OpenOffice.org.
    2) Oracle has moronically demonized the LibreOffice progressive branch off the comatose OpenOffice.org project.
    3) Oracle has sat on Java and allowed it to become an infamous nest of security holes.
    4) Oracle has yet to offer Enterprise software for the Mac, despite pressure to get the hell off insecure and buggy Windows.

    1. I see a distinct difference between patent infringement on the one hand and not working on your own software to the complete satisfaction of internet commenters on the other.

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