The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has ruled that Google’s use of Java APIs in the Android operating system violated copyright law. “Google’s use of the Java API packages was not fair,” the court said. It added, “The fact that Android is free of charge does not make Google’s use of the Java API packages noncommercial. Giving customers ‘for free something they would ordinarily have to buy’ can constitute commercial use.”
This overturns an earlier ruling, which found that Google’s Java use was covered by “fair use.” The original lawsuit was filed in 2010, and Oracle is seeking nearly $9 billion in damages.
Google said it is “disappointed” in the ruling and is considering its options.