Skip to main content

Oracle Considered Entering Into The Smartphone Market

The Oracle-Google trial, concerning whether Android has violated Oracle's Java intellectual property rights, got underway at the start of this week. Yesterday, Oracle CEO Larry Ellison took the stand, as Google's attorney grilled him, taking the angle that the lawsuit against Android is pretty much a case of sour grapes - following Oracle's decision that it wouldn't make it, in the smartphone market.

Ellison admitted that Oracle had seriously mulled entering the smartphone race, by either developing its own handsets, or buying either Rim or Palm.

Palm was, unsurprisingly, not regarded as a particularly good bet, and RIM was a stronger candidate, but thought to be too expensive. Starting from scratch, with its own handsets was an idea that was discarded as not being realistic.

Google is arguing that failing to enter the smartphone market, Oracle is now trying to eke cash out of it, via the Android lawsuit. Google further argues that Oracle was even supportive of Android when it first launched, but now it's a mega-success and is digging in the claws - to extract money.

Oracle claims that Google knew all along that it should have secured a license for its use of Java technology on Android, and yesterday showed several emails from Andy Rubin to the court, just to illustrate that fact.

Larry Page also appeared via video tape, being questioned by Oracle's attorney, and shown a document written by the Android team that stated Google "must take a license from Sun" (which developed Java, and was then bought up by Oracle).

Page said he was "confused" by the statement and didn't agree with it. He added: "It's not consistent with my understanding of Java."

The trial is expected to run for two months, so we've a long way to go. If the judge finds in favour of Oracle, it could have huge repercussions for the entire software industry in terms of licensing.

Source: PC Advisor (opens in new tab)

Darren Allan

Darran has over 25 years of experience in digital and magazine publishing as a writer and editor. He's also an author, having co-written a novel published by Little, Brown (Hachette UK). He currently writes news, features and buying guides for TechRadar, and occasionally other Future websites such as T3 or Creative Bloq and he's a copy editor for TechRadar Pro. Darrran has written for a large number of tech and gaming websites/magazines in the past, including Web User and ComputerActive. He has also worked at IDG Media, having been the Editor of PC Games Solutions and the Deputy Editor of PC Home.