At Google I/O, as expected, there was the announcement of Project Brillo, the operating system for the Internet of Things. Google also announced Weave, a protocol that will serve as the standard language for the various devices to communicate with each other. This project is derived from Android but in a version stripped of various components to operate with minimum requirements while maintaining the support to essential services such as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.
The Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) asked the Obama administration an opinion about the case of Oracle vs. Google in the case which for years has seen the two giants in a lawsuit about the use of the Java language in Android. The dispute began in 2010 after Oracle bought Sun, the company that developed Java, and claimed that Google violates copyright and patents related to Java. This isn’t one of the many clashes between companies regarding software patents but a special case where the final decision may have a significant influence on the future of software development.
RPX Corporation has announced that its subsidiary RPX Clearinghouse LLC has agreed to buy about 4,000 patents held by the Rockstar consortium for $900 million. This is the majority of the patents acquired following Nortel bankruptcy, the market operation behind the creation of the consortium, which includes Apple, Microsoft, Blackberry, Ericsson and Sony. The transfer of so many patents to RPX Corporation could score at least a truce in the tough war fought in recent years using software and hardware patents as weapons.
Google announced the Android Wear platform, a version of the Android operating system optimized for wearable devices. The first applications are watches, which of course will not only serve to provide the time but will be tiny portable computers. The first models to be put on the market in a few months are the Moto 360 by Motorola and the G Watch by LG.
Google has announced the sale of Motorola Mobility to Lenovo for a total of $2.9 billion. $1.41 billion will be paid at the end of the agreement, $660 million in cash and $750 million in Lenovo shares. The remaining $1.5 billion will be paid over the next three years. Google bought Motorola Mobility in August 2011 for $12.5 billion.