A San Francisco jury handed down a partial ruling on Monday, finding that Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) infringed on Oracle‘s (NASDAQ:ORCL) copyright to Java software recreated in Android operating systems.
However, the jury could not agree whether Google’s use of the software was “fair use” under existing law, leaving that decision to the judge, Wired reported.
Google’s attorney’s filed a motion for a mistrial, arguing that the ruling was critical to the remainder of the case – especially as it related to Oracle’s demand for $1 billion in damages. The judge did not indicate when he would rule on that motion.
Oracle sued Google over a re-engineered version of its Java platform within Android. The jury had been asked to decide whether the application programming interfaces, APIs, were copyrighted.
The trial will next consider whether Google infringed on Oracle’s patents with Android.
Patent and copyright litigation has emerged as a leading weapon in competition between technology companies.
Lawsuits involving leading technology players, including Google, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), Oracle, Samsung, Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) and Motorola Mobility (NYSE:MMI), are currently before courts around the world.