Google doesn’t disclose revenue for the individual arms of its multifaceted company, but in a court hearing, an Oracle attorney revealed all the revenue and profit Android made over the last seven years. In addition, a transcript of the hearing was briefly made public, and it was not redacted.
According to the documents, Google’s Android made $31 billion in revenue and $22 billion in profit during the past seven years. Oracle’s attorney Annette Hurst reportedly used the figures to bolster the company’s case against Google and to prove that the company has more than enough money to pay Oracle the money it’s asking for. The ongoing lawsuit between the two companies concerns Google’s use of Java without licensing the product. Oracle has said it wants $1 billion in damages for the violation, but Google argues that the enterprise giant shouldn’t be able to copyright code.
Shortly after Android’s financial information was released, Google asked for the figures to be redacted and sealed, saying the operating system’s revenue and profit is “extremely sensitive information” and for the attorney’s eyes only. The transcript vanished from the electronic court records a few hours after the disclosure, reports Bloomberg. Although Google’s reasons for asking the court to reseal those documents are plain, the court itself has not given an official reason for the record removal.
If the trial goes in favor of Oracle, it might set a new precedent for software and services that use licensed programming software. Fortunately for developers, Google is already starting to move from Java to OpenJDK, an open-source version from Oracle. It’s unclear how the leak will affect the outcome of the case, but it certainly has spurred some discussion of Android’s profitability, especially in comparison with Apple’s iOS.
Google mainly makes revenue on Android from mobile advertising sales and Google Play purchases, though we aren’t sure what portion of Android’s total revenue is related to the figures revealed this week. Comparing the reported figures to Apple’s own revenue on iOS shows that Google is $9 billion behind Apple, which reported $40 billion in total revenue from the iOS App Store since 2008. The reported figures also help identify Android’s role in Google’s overall finances. The company reported $66 billion in revenue and $17 billion in profit in 2014 alone.