How much does Android earn Google? Oracle says $10M a day

January 18, 2012
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Take this one with a grain of salt, folks: in a recent submission to the court in conjunction with its ongoing lawsuit, Oracle estimated that revenue from Android activations made every day net Google a whopping $10 million across an entire year. Estimating that the figure stays solid over 2012 (and keep in mind, it's almost certain to increase) that would mean that Google makes approximately 3.7 billion dollars on Android advertising alone. Oracle did not say how it reached this conclusion, but Free and Open Source Software advocate Florian Muller guesses that they're assuming $14 of ad revenue per Android user, per year.

Without hard data, it's touch to know whether Oracle has any sort of basis for this claim - even if Google were to release the source and target of all of its massive advertising income, restricting it to Android users (and specifically those Android users who activate a phone or tablet through Google) would be almost impossible. And considering that Google is the most profitable and active web advertising company in the world, how could you say that Google would make significantly less without Android? If iOS or Window Phone 7 were the dominant mobile platform, Google would still be making an incredible amount of cash. Keep in mind that it's in Oracle's best interests to paint Android as a cash cow - they're presenting the legal opinion that it violates their Java intellectual property. Oracle previously claimed 1.16 billion dollars in damages from Google.

Oracle claims that Android generates plenty of direct revenue as well, thanks to sales in the Android Market. It also makes loyal users of satellite services like Gmail and Google Plus, which in turn make Google more money on both the desktop and mobile side of the web. None of these points are invalid; Google is a publicly traded company whose end goal is to make profit. They've chosen to do so by providing services and selling ads, instead of directly creating and inflating hardware. None of the allegations presented in Oracle's latest statement are illegal - they're simply trying to demonstrate how much money Google is making off of "their" intellectual property. If ORacle can push the case into a full-on trial and come out victorious, the $10,000,000 a day figure will likely weigh heavily on any settlements or damages.

[via BGR]


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  • Chris Walters

    Has anyone seen the Billion dollar collection of property Larry Ellison owns? Including his primary estate which is valued over $110 million? No doubt there may be some legitimate claims against Google, and they’ll pay up if and when the courts tell them too… but seriously, if anyone has doubt Larry Ellison isn’t himself a money grabbing filthy rich tycoon, and that this isn’t because Google is making more money than him, come on already! Larry Ellison is the #5 richest man on the planet, he’d buy Google if he could. Time will tell! http://www.forbes.com/wealth/billionaires/gallery/larry-ellison#gallerycontent

    • Uplift_Humanity

      Not sure what your point is.

      Yes, Ellison is rich. So what? Many rich people own lots of things. So what.

      And even rich people (and their companies) get hurt when others (e.g. Google) take/use their property (i.e. Java) without paying for it’s use.

      The truth about him isn’t so bad. We should not vilify someone just for being rich. There are good rich people and bad rich people — just as there are good poor people and bad poor people. A person’s net worth/income has nothing to do with whether they’re good/bad. Though, for people with a weak character, money (it’s excess or dearth) could corrupt them.

      Sometimes rich (like poor) people fight back when someone’s stolen their property. He believes Google did that to his companies – so that’s why they’re in court. Simple as that – no need to look for grand complex theories.

  • 446 5678

     Oracle’s douche baggery knows no end…Grats Oracle, btw TY for neglecting your software for the last 10 years.

  • Uplift_Humanity

    The author of this blog doesn’t know how to analyze. He lists only some “revenue” Google gets from Android, misallocates other benefits, yet he still winds up saying “None of these points [Oracle’s revenue claims] are invalid”.

    Reality is, Android is Google’s future. That’s the reason they give it away for free to end-users (actually they do charge a nominal royalty/licensing fee that is paid by the device manufacturers, this fee gets hidden into the device’s net cost).

    Google gets this licensing revenue — from every company that uses Android (not just phone & tablet manufacturers, but others in other industries like set-top boxes, etc).

    Google gets ad revenue from EVERY Android phone (not just the ones it sells — this blog is wrong on that). That alone will add up to more than $14 per device per year. If each ad costs 1-cent, that means a user has to see 1400 ads in a year. That’s less than 4 ads per day. How many Android users see just 4 Android-controlled ads in a day? Most people probably see more than 10 to 20 in a day — remember all those pesky ads within your apps? Google gets revenue from EVERY one of them. So they’re probably making more than $14/device/year — more like $30 or $50. And with millions of users, that will add up to some big cash.

    Google gets user-data (the obvious stuff like your name, address, phone number) but also a goldmine of other data — all for free from Android. Now you know why they give away Android for free? Some of the data they get: all of your contacts & their info, all info you enter onto websites, your passwords for every account you access on your Android device, your GPS history (where you sleep at night every night, where you are every day between 8am-5pm, restaurants you cater to often, what movies you like/when/where, when you’re on the road, what roads you take to go anywhere, etc — all from your GPS data). Remember when you agreed to the “Terms and Conditions” when activating your Android device? Well, you agreed to give all this data (and more) to Google, for free. They know more about you — through Android — than probably your parents know. You agreed to let them take any data from your device. You probably don’t understand the significance of this — but you’ve left your life bare to them (as long as Android is with you – in your purse or pocket).

    Google gets revenue from app sales.

    Google gets revenue from side/associated businesses they run/control — such as Gmail, Google+, web-search (ads), Google maps (licensing), etc. This is significant because Google charges for these technologies to their advertiser customers. And the advertisers will only pay top-dollar for ads if Google can prove they have millions of eyes. Android gives them millions of eyes daily, so their revenue from these side businesses gets amplified by Android’s existence. Put simply, Android is a force-multiplier for Google, and today they’re interested only in multiplying the number of eyes they can claim as their own. Tomorrow, this will evolve to include how many minds they can predict. For example, if they know 40% of eyes who drive along route 66 on weekday mornings between 7:45 and 8am like burgers, then they can sell a dynamic (temporary, targeted) advertisement for a burger-joint on a digital billboard on route 66 during those minutes, and make more money. They can also send a digital coupon to you if you’ve bought burgers from the advertiser before (or if you’ve never bought from them but always buy from their competitor). Because they know so much about you — because of Android snooping on you 24/7 — they can predict what you’ll do, or even INFLUENCE you (remember, they’ll know what influences work on you, so they’ll be VERY successful in influencing you). And if they’re smart, they’ll know you’re on a diet and so you don’t want such coupons – so they’ll let you pay them $10 a year to stop them from sending you fast-food ads. It doesn’t look pretty when they really start to use everything they have from Android users.

    Lastly, Google gets revenue from IP they’ve bought (similar to their recent Motorola Mobility planned-purchase). This allows them to defend against infringements they make on other companies’ patents, as well as prosecute others (to either get royalty fees, or to stop/delay them from competing with Google). This is a huge multiplier because it provides cash AND stops/delays competition.

    NET RESULT: Google makes a ton of cash because of Android. Without Android, they would make much less cash and their growth (worldwide spread – around the world and inside your world) would be much slower.

  • Randy Schneider

    Is the structure of your Adwords account sufficient to being easily managed, optimized, and achieve a positive ROI? If not, here’s a tip on how to do that: Split the types of advertising into different campaigns. Have one for search, one for banners, one for search remarketing, one for display remarketing, etc. This easily helps you see which kinds of ads perform well for your business. Remarketing gets mad props but it doesn’t always work with all kinds of website prospects and can just run up costs. You can easily tell if banners are working in comparison to search keywords if they’re in different campaigns. So there’s your tip for the day folks – to those that are newer to Google Adwords at least. In fact, if you’re new and need help, I bet Simon could give you a leg up on your campaign, just give him a call at 302-401-4478.