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Court case reveals ‘big loss’ for Google Android

Jennifer Scott

A US court case has revealed Google’s Android mobile operating system (OS) made a “big loss” in 2010, despite its rising fame at the time.

The surprise statement came during Google’s on-going trial with Oracle, where Larry Ellison’s company claims the internet giant infringed patents it owns relating to the Java programming language.

Although Google’s overall results are made public, it has always kept the Android figures close to its chest. However, for the purpose of the trial, it was forced to reveal the financials for its mobile division.

District Judge William Alsup did not announce the numbers to the court room, but admitted Android had made losses in every quarter of 2010, according to Reuters.

"That adds up to a big loss for the whole year," he added.

Android has grown to be the most used mobile operating system globally, responsible for 44% of the smartphone market, according to the latest statistics from analyst firm Ovum this week. The report also claimed the share would rise to 48% in 2017, with it remaining the most dominant mobile OS for the next five years.

However, in 2010, Android’s market share was significantly lower at just 27% and the results shown to the court prove all was not well at the company.

Computer Weekly contacted Google for more details on the revelations, but a spokesman said the firm was “not commenting on this on-going case.”

Android does have something to celebrate this week though, as two separate analyst reports claimed Samsung, which uses the mobile OS for its flagship products, was the best-selling mobile manufacturer in the world.

Juniper Research said Samsung had overtaken Apple as the number one smartphone seller, shipping 46.9m handsets compared to its 35.1m, and Strategy Analytics said the manufacturer had knocked Nokia from the top spot of overall phone sales, selling 93.5 million in the first quarter of 2012, compared to Nokia’s 82.7 million.


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