Oracle seeks billions from Google in Java suit

The database giant is looking to collect billions of dollars in damages from Google over a lawsuit filed last year claiming patent infringement over the use of Java in Android.

Lance Whitney
Lance Whitney Contributing Writer
Lance Whitney is a freelance technology writer and trainer and a former IT professional. He's written for Time, CNET, PCMag, and several other publications. He's the author of two tech books--one on Windows and another on LinkedIn.

Oracle is seeking billions of dollars in damages from Google in a lawsuit that accuses the search giant of infringing on patents related to Java.

In the lawsuit filed last August, Oracle claims that Google is infringing on Java copyrights and patents through its use of code related to the programming language in Android. Oracle acquired Java when it officially purchased Sun Microsystems in early 2010.

The amount of damages sought by Oracle was publicly revealed for the first time in a court filing yesterday. Google calls the damages report "unreliable and results-oriented," according to Reuters, and asserts that the estimates are inaccurate and inflated, according to a letter sent to the court from Google's legal team earlier this month.

"Oracle's 'methodology' for calculating damages is based on fundamental legal errors and improperly inflates their estimates," Google said in a statement sent to CNET today.

Google has also asked the court to keep certain details about the damages private, a move that prompted Oracle to accuse the search giant of trying to conceal that information, added Reuters. But U.S. District Judge William Alsup has ordered Google to reveal the information on the damages for the record by today.

A trial in the U.S. District Court of the Northern District of California could start as soon as November, Reuters said.

Oracle did not immediately return CNET's request for comment.

Updated at 10:15 a.m. PT with Google's statement to CNET.