Google, Motorola 'must hand over' Android data to Apple

Google, Motorola 'must hand over' Android data to Apple

Summary: Google and Motorola have another fight on their hands. This time, arch rival Apple has won a court case forcing the Android maker to hand over roadmap and other data.

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TOPICS: Apple, Google, Mobility
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Google and Motorola Mobility have been ordered by a U.S judge to hand over development information pertaining to Android in an ongoing patent case.

The judge agreed with Apple that roadmap details and Motorola's acquisition details should be given to Apple, its main rival in the smartphone race, reports Bloomberg.

Motorola Mobility, a purveyor of Android goods in its hardware offerings, was given the go ahead by both U.S. and European regulators to be bought by Google last month.

"The Android/Motorola acquisition discovery is highly relevant to Apple's claims and defenses," Apple's lawyers said in a filing on March 2, requesting the order from the court. "Motorola shall be expected to obtain full and immediate compliance by Google with Apple's liability discovery demands," the Chicago judge said.

But Motorola hit back and said it had no "possession, custody, or control" of Google's employees and documents, and that it could not "force Google to produce documents or witnesses".

Google has said previously that while it plans to buy the hardware maker Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion, the division would remain a third-party smartphone maker and would be treated as a separate organisation.

Not only would this mostly quell fears from other smartphone makers who use the Android operating system, it would prevent antitrust authorities from dropping a dead weight on the companies from a great height. EU and U.S. authorities would have likely not passed the acquisition deal should such "dividers" between the companies not exist.

Exactly what Apple wants is unclear from the filings, however. Google may have wider roadmap plans outside Android that includes the mobile operating system, and could open up the search turned mobile giant to further attacks from Apple, should further patents be thought to be violated.

Apple and Motorola have been engaged in an acrimonious battle over patents in recent months.

But though Android, developed by Google, has been at the center of the patent wars in the past year, Apple and Google have yet to face each other head to head, with Apple instead focusing its efforts on smartphone makers who use the platform.

Two trials with separate juries have been scheduled for June 11; one covering six allegedly infringed patents brought by Apple against Motorola, and the other with three patents from Motorola.

A Google spokesperson declined to comment. An Apple spokesperson also declined to comment, while Motorola was unavailable at the time of writing.

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31 comments
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  • comes around goes around.

    If Android's roadmap is critical to Apple' defense and claims, then wouldn't Apple's roadmap be critical for Motorola's defense and claims?

    I think that if the US and EU authorities had blocked Google's acquisition of Motorola, then we would be hearing news stories of the US and EU authorities seeking to break Apple up.
    BorgX
  • Not tha tI'm a big fan of either one of them

    in these matters, I think it's BS for Apple to try and force Motorola to give up corporate info (in regards to what their future plans are, via a roadmap) to Apple under a lame "patent dispute" court hearing.

    I think Apple's a little unsure of what their future direction is, and is a bit concearned.
    William Farrel
    • The alternative is not better

      If Motorola/Google refuses to provide roadmap information (which should be public anyway -- if Android is "open" in any form), then they acknowledge that there is something to hide and become more vulnerable for other patent claims.

      The mere fact, that Google has for such long time refused to stand up behind Android and demonstrate that it does not infringe on anyone's patents, and at the same time the hardware makers agree to pay Microsoft royalties -- obviously demonstrates that indeed there is some bad news to hide.

      For Google, it's OK -- they will keep Android alive as long as they could (this strategy seems to work ok for now) and just collect everyone's private data.
      danbi
  • this is tortious interference with FOSS business!

    Apple crooks want to steal the trade secrets from FOSS companies. This decision must be appealed, overthrown and the judge fired for incompetence and bias.
    The Linux Geek
  • You Know Apple

    They can't innovate until they steal the idea from someone else!
    Thinks4Self
  • This is clearly a case of double standards

    Apple makes both hardware and software. Why don't they have to give their roadmap data to Google then?
    CyberGuerilla
    • Not "open"?

      Probably because Apple never claimed iOS is "open software"? Or "open platform"?
      danbi
  • The Real Problem Isn't Apple...

    Apple couldn't perpetrate any of it's criminal activity without the support of the courts. Apple blatantly violates so many of the practices that other companies get tagged for, and yet they are never prosecuted or even charged... What the hell is going on here ???
    Apple isn't even targeted by the "Occupy" bozos ???
    Is apple a "jedi" company, that just waves its hands, and silences all doubt and resistance ?
    I think our government needs to be investigated for it's protection of apple.
    Steve@...
    • Funny

      The "Occupy" bozo crowd are rich and obnoxious enough that they all socialize with the highest priced Apple and Windows loaded laptops. No Linux and FOSS software for them. Their parents buy them only the best. Why sue the very companies which provide your lavish lifestyles (outside of peeing, and having sex on sidewalks of course)? Apple I'm sure probably had the best lawyers available to them when they contracted their patents (obviously better than anyone else's).
      partman1969@...
    • yes, the judicial system supports criminal behavior

      Apple isn't a religion. In fact, it rarely loses because THEY DO THEIR HOMEWORK! Of course, you can make up your own opinion but you can't make up your own facts.
      mlindl
      • what's your point?

        a) You state no "facts".
        b) Apple have been on their knees in the past. Steve Jobs was brought back to save the company (probably when the shares wer $10 but I can't be bothered checking). A great job has been done by many, and a great service to technology. I woudn't rate itunes previous incarnations of tying yourself to 1 pc/mac OR their dogmatic b;ocking of anyone else attaching to itunes or sharing the socket good practice. Yes it enabled them to get a strong base but we'll all pay for that in due course. Me... I love the hardware; hate the ethos and quite frankly hate their top management. I say live and let live but sadly Apple cannot do that.
        pjmckay
    • They must be Jedi

      Great! You discovered Apple's secret. :)

      Master Yoda sends you his regards.
      danbi
  • I don't understand

    Time over time I see court sessions go in favour of apple for things competitors would be shot and executed for... it's like courts don't dare do them wrong...
    DJK2
    • Not only you

      You know all facts?
      Imagine, Apple indeed are on the right side? Then what? Bash them for being so good??
      danbi
  • NuttyRich

    my roomate's step-sister made $19634 past month. she gets paid on the internet and bought a $452200 home. All she did was get lucky and use the advice explained on this link N U T T Y R I C H . C O M
    wanda02
  • Apple does it again

    What it seems like to me is that Apple knows they don't have much in regards to evidence and they know it. Fishing expedition is what I see.
    smashandgrab
  • Roadmap?

    there is an app for that in the appstore
    warboat
  • Google, Motorola 'must hand over' Android data to Apple

    I usually don't get involved in this petty battle between Google and Apple. But this time Apple has just gone too far. Since when does a judge have the authority to tell a company to turn over internal company documents to a rival company. This judge either doesn't know the law or has been paid off. Oh wait, the said judge is from Chicago, yeah he's been paid off.
    I have gotten so annoyed by Apple's Chicago style strong arm tactics. I have decided that I will never own any Apple products. I hope Apple's new CEO drives the company off a cliff and it's brain dead product users can follow them.
    Scotsman828
    • Yea, right

      You decided because a judge agreed with Apple that you aren't going to own any Apple products? Do you own any now and this is new? Apple Chicago style strong arm tactics? What?
      mlindl
    • Nothing new...

      "Since when does a judge have the authority to tell a company to turn over internal company documents to a rival company."

      It happens all the time.
      TroyMcClure