Is Oracle going after Google because Ellison is buddies with Jobs?

At first, I thought this was just a silly rumor. But, after having several C-level executives tell me this theory, I began to seriously consider it.

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I can think of all kinds of reasons why Oracle is suing Google over its use of its Java IP (intellectual property) in Android. Making money from its Java patents strikes me and most experts as the most likely reason. But, I've also heard suggested, time after time, that the real reason is that Larry Ellison, Oracle's CEO is buddies with Steve Jobs, aka Mr. Apple and he wanted to help Apple fight Android.

Could that be the case? Here's the logic that supporters of this theory use. First, Google and Apple are competiting head-to-head in the smartphone space. The iPhone certainly has more users, but the Android phone family is quickly catching up.

Even before this product fight really started going though; Apple was feeling the heat from competiting with Google. That's one reason why Steve Jobs kicked Eric Schmidt, Google's CEO, off of Apple's board.

Then, of course, this year, Google started talking smack about Apple. At the Google I/O keynote, Vic Gundotra of Google said that the world needed a second major mobile phone operating system because, "If we did not act, we faced a draconian future where one man, one phone, one carrier was the future. That's a future we don't want." Oh, did I mention he did this in front of a 1984 poster?

What goes around comes around Apple.

Since then the war of words has been growing increasingly heated between the two giants of Silicon Valley. The New York Times reported that Jobs told an all-hands meeting that "We did not enter the search business. They entered the phone business. Make no mistake: Google wants to kill the iPhone. We won't let them."

Since then, the two companies have started playing the "You started it!

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