Google scored a victory over Oracle in this closely watched intellectual property case involving Oracle’s Java patents. But there’s more to come in this case, pending a federal court judge ruling that may come as early as next week.
In the coming week, as noted in a Bloomberg report, U.S. District Judge William Alsup is expected to weigh in on whether Oracle’s Java APIs can be copyrighted. Earlier this month, a jury issued a verdict during the first phase of the trial, finding Google had infringed on Oracle’s copyrights. But the jury was deadlocked on whether the case involved “fair use” of the Java technology and Judge Alsup is expected to rule on whether Google will be entitled to a new copyright trial.
Google’s Patent Win
The jury’s decision Wednesday marked the end of the second phase of the trial and also resulted in the cancellation of the damages phase.
After the verdict in the patent phase, Google issued a statement:
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, however, said in a statement that the company will continue to defend its Java platform:
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.
Even though Oracle lost its battle against Google, it appears the company isn’t ready to call it quits. Instead, it plans to shift its attention from patents to copyright infringement of its Java APIs.
Oracle, Let it Go
At first, it seems understandable that Oracle would react like this, because they have a right to defend what they have. But on second thought, Google said that when it started to use one of Sun’s patents, it knew the OS was free to use. Oracle, however, sued them in 2010, one year after it acquired Sun Microsystems and their patents. Somehow, that seems unethical for a company like Oracle to act this way. Sadly, when money is on the table, anything is possible.