Oracle (Nasdaq: ORCL) said it will never issue the technology compatibility kit (TCK) to Project Harmony, thus leaving Google's (Nasdaq: GOOG) Android in a quandary.

The Register reported that Oracle, in a meeting hosted by T-Mobile between Oct. 5 and 6 in Germany, told a group of major Java leaders that it will never impart Harmony with a license.

Recently IBM (NYSE: IBM) has also announced that it will collaborate with Oracle to support the OpenJDK (Java) project and jettisoned support for Apache's Project Harmony.

IBM had earlier supported Apache's cause and said Sun should issue a license to Project Harmony. In fact, Oracle, before buying Sun Microsystems, had raised concerns about Sun's control over Java, a point made by Google in its response against Oracle's lawsuit.http:/

Since The Register claims that the meeting took place between Oct. 5 and 6, it could be surmised that IBM was cognizant of Oracle's decision not to issue a license as it made clear its intention to join OpenJDK on Oct. 11.

However, the outright dismissal of issuance of a license to Project Harmony leaves Google alone in its fight against the Java infringement case filed by Oracle in August. Google's Android's Dalvik virtual machine (VM) uses a set of Apache Harmony library, an open-source implementation of Java from the Apache Software Foundation.

The move could be Oracle's strategy to glean some revenue from the smartphone market through licensing. With Google's Android taking over the smartphone market, Oracle could be aiming to tap this avenue.

According to Dr. Alexander Poltorak, Chairman and CEO, General Patent Corporation, Oracle is exercising its right over an asset that it acquired as a result of buying Sun Microsystems. However, Oracle is acting in line with the classical definition of a "patent troll" -- whereby a non-practising entity uses the patent to sue rather than to create a new product. 

Dr. Poltrak says "a patent is a license to sue," and it has only "negative rights." It is like a "right to exclude" and thus, Oracle is not infringing on any rights by litigating its patent, he explains.

This leaves Google as the lone soldier in its fight to avail a TCK for Apache or it has to join the OpenJDK umbrella.

International Business Times, The Global Business News Leader

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