Google accuses Microsoft of revealing "highly confidential" Android source code. What?

Google doesn't seem to want to get along at all with Microsoft these days. We had the issue about the patent sale that Google took to the Court of Public Opinion.  Now they are taking issue with Microsoft in another Court.  Google is asking a US International Trade Commission Judge to bar a Microsoft expert witness from testifying in Microsoft's lawsuit against Motorola.

If you have lost track of who's suing who or complaining on whom, Microsoft is currently suing Motorola in an attempt to force them to pay royalties for patents Microsoft owns that are related to technology used in Android mobile operating systems.

In the motion to block the expert witness testimony, Google claims Microsoft violated a confidentiality agreement between Microsoft, Google, and Motorola when Microsoft shared "highly confidential source codes" with its expert witness. Google's motion states in part,

“The protective order governing confidentiality in this investigation explicitly requires that Microsoft disclose to Google any consultant or expert seeking access to Google confidential business information or highly confidential source code before [Google's emphasis] allowing a consultant or expert to review such information so that Google has an opportunity to object prior to disclosure.”

The sixteen page motion asks the Judge to prohibit the expert witness from testifying and require Microsoft to provide Google with a declaration, under oath, that no additional consultants or experts were permitted access to the confidential information.

Microsoft has until August 15th to respond to Google's motion. Wouldn't it be a hoot if Microsoft produced an email from Google voicing no objection to disclosing this information?  We also must ask how confidential can source code be when the Android system is supposedly open source?

Source: Yahoo News

George Ponder

George is the Reviews Editor at Windows Central, concentrating on Windows 10 PC and Mobile apps. He's been a supporter of the platform since the days of Windows CE and uses his current Windows 10 Mobile phone daily to keep up with life and enjoy a game during down time.

  • "Highly confidential"??!! Bu, bu I thought Android was completely free and open?!
  • That is what I thought too, isn't it open source?
  • Well if it's Motorola's own proprietary code on top of Android, then maybe they have a case.
  • But then you would think Moto would be objecting, not Google who's not being sued here.
  • Exactly, it would be Motorola not Google tossing a fit.
  • They just know that they've awakened a giant, and that WP7 and the Microsoft ecosystem is about to eat their lunch. You hear that google? The 900lb gorilla is coming for you.
  • make that godzilla XD
  • Someone tell Google to STFU already, if they were in last place in mobile then maybe you could make a case for all this moaning and crying but they're not. I just hope Nokia steps up and MS pushes the WP7 marketing hard with mango so people notice finally. I'm tired of Google already, I wish I could ditch my gmail account but I have it tied to a few forums/services (xbox live) so I can't change it now.
  • ... also @Google: This is the world's tiniest violin, and it's playing just for you.
  • On your Xbox Live account settings, you can change the e-mail address you have tied to it.
  • Just to be clear that is not you Live ID email, that email is just the email associated with your Live ID. So you'll get Xbox Newsletters and stuff sent to that email if you change it. However you need to look into you Microsoft Passport account if you wish to change the main email of you Live ID.
  • I already don't use Gmail for anything but YouTube and I hardly even go there anymore. I also uninstalled everything google from my PC and now that Bing has public transit directions on their full site I don't even have to use google at all anymore!
  • Oh snap you're right! Transit is the only reason I've continued to use Google Maps too. I live in the San Francisco Bay Area and I ride transit a lot. They have Bart and SF Muni, but not AC Transit. I assume they're working on that now since it's the largest transit agency in the bay. I hope they added transit in the maps in Mango.
  • its not in the 7712 so maybe it'll be in the final,if not then the desktop or mobile Bing site will serve me just as well.
  • Don't let the expert witness see it! I want you to analyze it using someone who isn't an expert so we could question their credentials in court!
  • Not all code that runs on Android phones is open source, as a journalist you should know better. Google's Apps and some APIs are closed source.Let's be fair: If they signed an agreement and Microsoft violated it, it should pay the consequences, just like if it were the other way around.
  • Yeah, but here's the thing: Google is trying to supress evidence that would show that Motorola's use of Android violated these patents. That in and of itself proves that MS is likely correct in its allegations. As for the confidentiality agreement, it will be reviewed by the court and the judge will rule whether the evidence (in this case, expert testimony) is admissable. I would imagine that the open source nature of Android, though, is going to make it hard for the judge to rule in Google's favor because of them apparently trying to have their cake and eat it too.
  • Motorola went 100% Android and now that they don't make money and actually losing money Google knows that Motorola has no case and they are going to lose and they will end up paying Microsoft and that means Motorola will be even closer to bankruptcy.So they decide to get involve but this shows a true face of Google and what they claim about Android. Google claim Android is ‘Open Source’ and at the same time claim it has ‘highly confidential’ coding. So which one is it? It’s open or not? If it’s open then there is no highly confidential code there. If highly confidential then it’s not open and you lied to everybody all this time.What a pathetic company you are Google!
  • ...Motorola going bankrupt paying licence-fees to Microsoft like HTC and others? What are you talking about?
  • Motorola recently reported a net loss of $56 million, compared to earnings of $80 million in the second quarter of 2010. Motorola Mobile Devices saw an operating loss of $85 million, compared to the previous year’s earnings of $87 million.So if they have to pay $15 for each Android handset like others for every Android device they sold then you will see where things are going.They are already losig money so with what money they are going to pay for stolen IPs?
  • "Open and free." wants it both ways, to have unrestrcited access to any software patent they want but (as the story above shows) will throw a fit whenever someone so much as sniffs one of their patents. It's hypocrisy at its finest.
  • **** google.
  • its FUÇK Google!
  • LMAo @ google..
  • I wonder if this code was something that Google originally stole from someone else, because god forbid Google put out anything original that they didnt rip off from someone else.
  • Android is open source, but the current version of its code may not be released until months later.