Oracle sues Google: titanic clash over Java platform looms

Summary:Oracle is asking that Google be held 'liable for infringement of the patents and copyrights' related to its employment of the Java platform. Here's a link to the complete text of the lawsuit.

The Java language and supporting Java platform (Java Enterprise Edition, Java Standard Edition, Java Mobile Edition) have been the backbone of many Web-enabled and service-oriented enterprise systems for well over a decade. Sun Microsystems was the custodian of all things Java, a role that shifted to Oracle Corporation once it acquired Sun.

Now, as detailed by ZDNet colleague Sam Diaz, Oracle has filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Google, stating that Google has violated Oracle's patents associated with the Java platform technology within the Google Android mobile stack.

The complete text of the the lawsuit is now posted at the Sribd site. Here is the core of Oracle's complaint:

"On information and belief, Google has purposefully, actively, and voluntarily distributed Android and related applications, devices, platforms, and services with the expectation that they will be purchased, used, or licensed by consumers in the Northern District of California.

"Android has been and continues to be purchased, used, and licensed by consumers in the Northern District of California. Google has thus committed acts of patent infringement within the State of California and, particularly, within the Northern District of California. By purposefully and voluntarily distributing one or more of its infringing products and services, Google has injured Oracle America and is thus liable to Oracle America for infringement of the patents at issue in this litigation pursuant to 35 U.S.C. § 271."

Oracle is asking that Google be held "liable for infringement of the patents and copyrights" related to its employment of Java, that Google cease and desist from use of Java in Android, and that unspecified damages be awarded to Oracle for the infringement.  Oracle is also demanding a jury trial.

At the time this post was written, Google had yet to issue a statement about the lawsuit.

As Sam noted, Google says it activates about 200,000 Android-powered devices daily. So you know there's going to be megabucks involved. And it may be one of the biggest patent battles ever seen in this industry.

Topics: Google, Oracle


Joe McKendrick is an author and independent analyst who tracks the impact of information technology on management and markets. Joe is co-author, along with 16 leading industry leaders and thinkers, of the SOA Manifesto, which outlines the values and guiding principles of service orientation. He speaks frequently on cloud, SOA, data, and... Full Bio

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