In Court, Oracle Claims Google’s Android Has Generated $31 Billion in Revenue, $22 Billion in Profit

Joel Rosenblatt and Jack Clark, reporting for Bloomberg:

Google Inc.’s Android operating system has generated revenue of $31 billion and $22 billion in profit, a lawyer for Oracle Corp. said in court while disclosing figures Google says shouldn’t have been made public.

An analysis of the search engine giant’s tightly held financial information was disclosed Jan. 14 by an Oracle attorney in the database maker’s lawsuit accusing Google of using its Java software without paying for it to develop Android. Google said in a court filing that the lawyer based her statement on information derived from its confidential internal financial documents.

“Look at the extraordinary magnitude of commerciality here,” the Oracle attorney, Annette Hurst, told a federal magistrate judge as she discussed Android revenue and profit, which have never been publicly disclosed.

Android, which was launched in 2008, makes money for Google in two ways: adverts supplied by Google shown on Android phones, and revenue Google takes from its mobile app store, Google Play.

Google urged a San Francisco federal judge on Jan. 20 to redact and seal portions of the public transcript of last week’s hearing, saying the Oracle attorney improperly disclosed “extremely sensitive information” from documents that were marked “Attorney’s Eyes Only.”

There’s a juicy, gossipy angle on this, with regard to Google’s claim that Oracle’s release of this information was a breach of confidentiality. What strikes me, though, is that this just isn’t all that much money, at least by Google’s standards. Company-wide, Google reported $18.7 billion in revenue in their most recent quarter.

Alice Truong, writing for Quartz:

If the numbers are accurate, that would mean Android has generated less revenue over its lifetime than the iPhone did in the quarter ended Sep. 30, the most recently reported quarter. Then, Apple said the iPhone generated $32.2 billion in sales.

Update: Keep in mind too that it’s in Oracle’s interest to inflate these numbers, as they seek damages from Google’s use of Java. If anything, Google has probably made less than this amount from Android.

Thursday, 21 January 2016