Oracle now after $9.3bn in Google dispute

29 Mar 2016

The six-year legal battle between Oracle and Google – where the former is accusing the latter of copyright infringement – is building up to quite the prize pot.

Oracle has, for six years now, claimed Google’s use of certain parts of Java in its Android OS has infringed its copyright. After years of court cases, falling in favour of both sides, Oracle’s latest request is for $475m in damages to be topped up with $8.8bn on the back of “profits apportioned to infringed Java copyrights”, according to PC World.

That immense figure is built on the back of a mobile industry that has exploded since the case was originally brought at the start of the decade.

Google obviously denies any wrongdoing, saying its use of Java is covered by a generally accepted ‘fair use’ rule. Oracle disagrees, with the original trial in 2012 resulting in a jury that found Google infringed on 37 Java APIs.

The very issue of whether APIs were protected by copyright has since muddied the waters, resulting in a long, drawn-out case with figures like $9.3bn bandied about.

Last January, Oracle claimed that $31bn in revenues ($22bn profit) was generated through Android for Google, a move which the latter was pretty upset about.

Main image of the Oracle Challenger Plane, via D.Miller/Flickr

Gordon Hunt was a journalist with Silicon Republic