Jury finds that Android does not infringe on Oracle's patents

Jury finds that Android does not infringe on Oracle's patents
After a week of deliberations on the second phase of the Oracle v Google trial (this one covering patents), a jury has ruled decisively in favor of Google and the little green robot, acquitting Big G of infringing on any of the patents that Oracle asserted against them. Given the finding the judge has dismissed the jury and the trial is basically over.

The trial was scheduled to have a third phase where the jury would assess damages to be awarded to Oracle, but Oracle won nothing in the copyright phase that would be worth more than statutory damages (that’s about $150,000 for those of you keeping track), and nothing at all in the patent phase, so there is no longer a reason to have a damages portion of the trial. Judge Alsup still needs to write up his ruling on whether or not APIs can even be copyrighted – if he finds that they can’t be then Oracle will lose most or all of that $150 grand; either way it’s a far cry from the billions of dollars that Oracle had claimed they were going to win last year.

There is already spin coming from both sides. Google released a statement stating:

 “Today’s jury verdict that Android does not infringe Oracle’s patents was a victory not just for Google but the entire Android ecosystem.

Oracle, who is trying to maintain appearances in the face of such a clear legal defeat, released the following statement:

"Oracle presented overwhelming evidence at trial that Google knew it would fragment and damage Java. We plan to continue to defend and uphold Java's core write once run anywhere principle and ensure it is protected for the nine million Java developers and the community that depend on Java compatibility."

We're sure to see many more "experts" weigh in on the subject in coming days. Oracle-sponsored patent blogger Florian Mueller has already written a long post about how the issue is “far from over”, and while his write up is predictably skewed, in general he is almost certainly correct; Oracle will undoubtedly appeal the findings on both the patent and copyright phase (especially if Judge Alsup rules that APIs cannot be copyrighted), and we can expect this to go on for another year or two – in fact the issue of software interface copyrights is so important to the entire industry we wouldn’t be surprised if the issue eventually lands before the U.S. Supreme Court.

That doesn’t make this a meaningless verdict however; a loss could have opened Google up to major damages and at least the threat of an injunction. Perhaps more importantly, it would have given Android a presumption of guilt and thrown some uncertainty about its future into the plans of OEMs looking to make smartphones. Instead Android will now enjoy an enhanced presumption of stability and legal independence. It will also give Google the upper hand in any further attempts to reach a settlement between them and Oracle.

sources: Ginny LaRoe, Groklaw, FOSS Patents

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34 Comments

1. jechrin

Posts: 9; Member since: Jun 21, 2011

*Does

32. daniel_bargs

Posts: 325; Member since: Nov 27, 2010

ORACLE, Y U NO BRIBE ENOUGH?

2. smdeezy

Posts: 66; Member since: Jun 17, 2011

awesome!

3. GuiltyBystander

Posts: 199; Member since: Mar 05, 2012

IN YOUR FACE ORACLE!.

5. networkdood

Posts: 6330; Member since: Mar 31, 2010

that's what HE said....

31. anywherehome

Posts: 971; Member since: Dec 13, 2011

YES!! they wanted just to intimidate big open source manufacturers because it is killing Apple's and Microsoft's closed ecosystem and dictatorship......and they know open source with big supporters (Google, Samsung, HTC, ...) will kill it soon or later.....democracy wins here, thank you

4. networkdood

Posts: 6330; Member since: Mar 31, 2010

Cue the TACO.....

21. troybuilt

Posts: 155; Member since: Dec 16, 2011

Don't let the troll out of his cage yet. lol

24. InspectorGadget80 unregistered

CUE THE GALIOTKING

6. Carlitos

Posts: 671; Member since: Oct 23, 2011

Two great news in one week! Google is prob celebrating like its New years.

7. Sniggly

Posts: 7305; Member since: Dec 05, 2009

f**king. STOMPED. Down goes the patent troll. I think we should arrange a parade to drive past Oracle's headquarters, composed entirely of giant pairs of hands formed into the "flip off" position, with Android robots between them, and blaring "We Will Rock You/We Are the Champions" on repeat. :D

15. troybuilt

Posts: 155; Member since: Dec 16, 2011

LOL! More like "right uppercut to the PA troll and down he goes for the 10 count" Was an instant KO.... Owned! Android is the WINNER!! We are the champions my friends. And we'll keep on fighting till the end. Nice one Sniggly!

16. Sniggly

Posts: 7305; Member since: Dec 05, 2009

Lol, thanks man! I'm tempted to make a gif of flip offs and send it to Oracles CEO. :D

22. troybuilt

Posts: 155; Member since: Dec 16, 2011

lol. or a pair of new pants to replace the recently stained ones

8. ilia1986 unregistered

Java... Should have just stayed in Star Wars.. :P

11. JGuinan007

Posts: 699; Member since: May 19, 2011

That was Jawa

17. tedkord

Posts: 17409; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

Or Jabba. He was bloated.

30. ilia1986 unregistered

I know :P

9. ZEUS.the.thunder.god unregistered

wow. it made my day. now i really hope to hear same kinda news in SAMMY vs apple trial.

10. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

BOOM shakalakalaka!

35. Obie-Wan

Posts: 113; Member since: May 24, 2012

Fantastic Baby!!!

12. mas11

Posts: 1034; Member since: Mar 30, 2012

Justice! That's one bs lawsuit down countless others to go.

13. Droid_X_Doug

Posts: 5993; Member since: Dec 22, 2010

Larry shoulda taken the Google settlement offer.... Instead, he went for the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. And got exactly that - nothing. I wonder if he still has the appetite to enforce the rest of Oracle's patent portfolio?

14. Whateverman

Posts: 3295; Member since: May 17, 2009

Maybe Oracle should have taken that $3 million Google offered them for that patent they didn't infringe on, huh?

18. SuperEd

Posts: 132; Member since: Oct 18, 2011

Unfortunately, this type of deliberation was more likely than not, subject matter that was so far above the pedestrian intellect of the jury, that they just took the easy route and said not guilty. Oh, and probably each of them have Andriod phones.

19. tedkord

Posts: 17409; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

Or, the lawsuit was BS.

20. Sniggly

Posts: 7305; Member since: Dec 05, 2009

What Ted said. You do understand the concept that Oracle is a giant patent troll, right? And that Sun had no issue with Google using Java based software, and that Sun's president/CEO had written a letter praising Google's development of Android? And that Oracle tried to destroy the evidence by deleting that blog entry of his?

23. InspectorGadget80 unregistered

FINALLY SOME GOOD NEWS FOR ONCE!!! TAKE THAT ORACLE. Everyone is being greedy thinking they can take free money from GOOGLE just because Apple said their copying from their iPHONE.

25. kanagadeepan

Posts: 1265; Member since: Jan 24, 2012

Don't be EVIL, ORACLE.... Even James Gosling, father of Java left you to Google, all due to YOUR EVIL UN-ETHICAL DEEDS...

26. rudlie

Posts: 205; Member since: Mar 13, 2012

not finish yet. API issues still in progress. as java professional I fully understand that google still infringed that issues.

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