Oracle is seeking as much as $6.1 billion in damages in a patent- and copyright-infringement lawsuit against Google that claims the search-engine company's Android software uses technology related to the Java programming language, according to court papers.
The case was started in August 2010, seven months after Oracle acquired Sun Microsystems - and, with it, all rights to the Java patents. Later in May this year, judge reduced Oracle's Patent Infringement from 129 of 132.
Google has motioned to have the case filed "under seal," a move likely designed to protect both confidential information and shareholder confidence. Oracle's objection to this Google move claimed that the figures were significant enough that they "should not be hidden from the public view," Oracle said. Their statement read:
"Oracle's damages claims in this case are in the billions of dollars [..] are based on both accepted methodology and a wealth of concrete evidence."
Google said in a June 6 letter to U.S. District Judge William Alsup, posted today on the court's online docket, that Oracle's damages expert estimated Google would owe Oracle between $1.4 billion and $6.1 billion in damages if it was found liable for infringement.
"A breathtaking figure that is out of proportion to any meaningful measure of the intellectual property at issue," Google's lawyers said in the letter. Even the low end of the range "is over 10 times the amount that Sun Microsystems Inc. made each year for the entirety of its Java licensing program and 20 times what Sun made for Java-based mobile licensing."
Google countered that Oracle's "methodology" for calculating damages is based on fundamental legal errors and improperly inflates their estimates." This claim from Google, if supported, would make Oracle's objection a moot point.
Deborah Hellinger, a spokeswoman for Oracle, declined to comment.
[via: Business Week]