August 23, 2010, 5:03 PM — When Oracle sued Google over its use, or as Oracle would have it, Google's misuse of Java intellectual property in Android, the first questions were why and what did Oracle hope to gain?
My only pet theory is straightforward and simple: Oracle wants to skim big-bucks from Android. But, even if a miracle happens and Oracle wins every one of their claims, we're still talking years before Oracle sees a single red-cent.
Still lots of people will profit in the short run from Oracle. Here's my list:
1) Apple: While I don't think that Larry Ellison, Oracle's CEO, started the lawsuit against Google just to make his buddy Steve Jobs happy, there can be no doubt that giving Android trouble will make life easier for Apple iPhone sales.
Android Linux smartphone sales are going through the roof. The iPhone is also very popular, but as times goes on, it's becoming more clear that the smartphone competition was going to be a three-horse race: RIM's Blackberry, the iPhone, and Android. Blackberry is a business-first phone meaning that for most users it was a choice between Android and the iPhone. With that being the case, I'm sure Jobs was pleased to see some trouble coming Android's way.
Maybe Jobs' will get Larry something nice for his next birthday.
2) Microsoft: Microsoft, on the other hand, should give Ellison at least another yacht for the holidays. As my friend and fellow writer Preston Gralla pointed out, "No matter what happens with the suit, though, it hurts Google, and helps Microsoft at a time when Microsoft is particularly vulnerable in mobile."
You could say that. Windows Mobile had become a bad joke in smartphone circles. But, now, it seems to be gaining some popularity with developers again. I mean, can you see the Windows Phone 7 Developer Tools being downloaded more than 300,000 times before Oracle made Android developers worried?