NewsGoogle Blinks: Judge Sides with Microsoft on Expert Testimony in Android Lawsuit
The judge, acting on behalf of the U.S. International Trade Commission in the Microsoft vs. Motorola dispute, indicated that Google failed to document its "good-faith effort to resolve the matter with Microsoft."
Google's attorneys cried foul last week, claiming that a Microsoft expert witness improperly reviewed confidential Android code to bolster its patent ligation case against Motorola. The judge disagreed, despite the search company's pending acquisition of Motorola Mobility in a $12.5 billion deal announced on Monday.
Administrative Law Judge Theodore Essex issued an order indicating that Google had not documented its claims. The case involves Microsoft and its complaint against Motorola over the use of the open source, Linux-based Android mobile operating system. Microsoft contends that Motorola's use of Android infringes on some of Microsoft's intellectual property holdings.
Google, which helped to develop Android, is indirectly involved in this legal dispute, having been ordered to provide its confidential Android code for review. Google's attorneys contend the company was supposed to have received advance notice from Microsoft that the expert, Dr. Robert Stevenson, would review the code. Microsoft failed to provide that notice, according to Google, so the expert's testimony should be excluded from consideration. The administrative law judge, acting on behalf of the U.S. International Trade Commission in the Microsoft vs. Motorola dispute, indicated that Google had failed to document its "good-faith effort to resolve the matter with Microsoft." The judge specifically noted that Google had not included a copy of the letter to Microsoft notifying Microsoft of the protocol breach. Consequently, Judge Essex denied Google's petition.
The legal squabbling was overshadowed by Google's announcement about the Motorola Mobility acquisition. Google's motivation for picking up Motorola is to increase its patent portfolio as a legal defensive maneuver, particularly with regard to Android patents.
Android is considered to be the No. 1 consumer mobile operating system on the market in terms of volume sales. Android is offered royalty free to mobile device makers, but the OS has also been subject to multiple lawsuits. The lawsuits aren't just coming from Microsoft. Apple is also suing device makers over Android use. Google also faces direct litigation from Oracle, which contends that Android use infringes Oracle's Java intellectual property holdings.