This month saw the launch of Oracle’s attempt to claim circa $1 billion of damages from Google. Allegedly Google has infringed Oracle’s Java copyright in building the Android operating system for mobile phones. Whether this has merit or not, Oracle needs to brace itself for the reality that its enterprise applications and databases may over time be increasingly reliant on Android to reach its user base.
It would appear that as far as shareholders are concerned Indian software giant Infosys has been entertaining ideas above its station. The trend for Indian IT service companies moving out of the grubby world of technology into the refined world of business process management makes a lot of sense when increasing labour costs coupled with an impressive education system create an upward pressure in terms of delivery expectation. However short term focused shareholders are nervous that Infosys may be abandoning its core business.
BYOD – Bring your own data centre
The race to manage consumers’ data online is a fast growing market. Apple’s iCloud is already well known. Dropbox is another high profile example. Google who is no stranger to this space with its Google Docs offering is making a more explicit play into this space with its Google Drive offering. The service has the capacity to scale and so could well become the storage platform for other service providers. This is food for thought for the established enterprise data centre players.
Patent arms war
There appears to be a patent arms war brewing with the big players stacking seemingly random patents high so that others will think twice before muscling into their patch. Microsoft recently took delivery of over $1 billion worth of AOL patents. Given that AOL was one of the early players in the Internet space it wouldn’t be surprising of Microsoft discovers it now owns the rights to ‘the hyperlink’. It certainly does own Netscape which became Microsoft road kill in the early days of the browser wars.
Apple performed well in its most recent quarter. Its results flagged that there is still some growth left in iphones. Microsoft topped analyst expectations and demonstrated that the PC is not yet a museum piece. Intel is bullishly entering into the smartphone market in part to offset the arrival of rival ARM, which has made a foray into the Windows smartphones space. IBM kept on an even keel with a drop in hardware and services business offset by a growth in its software business.