Jury retires to decide on Google Oracle patent dispute
- 16 May 2012
- From the section Technology
A California jury has retired to consider claims that Google has violated patents belonging to software developer Oracle.
Google is accused of using the Java programming language in its Android mobile operating system unlawfully.
The internet search giant maintains Android was built "from scratch".
Last week the jury ruled that Google had infringed Oracle's copyright but could not agree on whether Google's actions constituted "fair use".
As an open-source programming language, Java can be used, free of charge, by companies wanting to build tools and applications.
Crucially, the case focuses not on using the Java programming language itself, but rather the use of 37 application programming interfaces (APIs) which help developers create software on the platform.
In closing arguments over the patent dispute, Oracle attorney Michael Jacobs accused Google of embarking on a "reckless path to patent infringement" when developing Android.
Google attorney Robert Van Nest said there was no inclination the search giant had infringed the patents until Oracle threatened litigation.
"There's not a single document, not an email," Mr Van Nest said.
Oracle is seeking $1bn (£630m) in damages for copyright infringement, while any potential settlement for the separate claim of patent violation is expected to be much less.
Prior to the case being brought to trial, Google offered to pay $2.8m (£1.75m) in damages on the two patents remaining in the case, covering the period during 2011 in which they were used.
For future use, Google offered to pay 0.5% of Android's revenue on one of the patents until its expiry in December this year.
Google also proposed giving Oracle 0.015% of revenues for use of a second patent which is valid until April 2018.
Oracle rejected both offers, court filings said.