Skyhook suing Google over location issues with Android

Android, location and maps lead to Skyhook suing Google
Android, location and maps lead to Skyhook suing Google

If you ask Skyhook, it will tell you that Google’s “Don’t be evil” motto is a hoad of bullplop, as the company is suing the search giant over location issues related to Android.

If you don’t know, the company uses WiFi data to create a layer of location data which is used by handset makers, carriers and developers for a more accurate location services. The company is suing the search giant for infringing on patents and for damaging its business due to its unfair practices.

The company said search giant has used its relationship with handset makers like Motorola to hinder the adoption of Skyhook’s technology. The company is suing the search giant for millions of dollars and it is even looking for an injunction.

Over at GigaOm, they looked at the lawsuit:

Skyhook and Google are competitors in the location positioning space. There was a time when Google tried to compete fairly with Skyhook. But once Google realized its positioning technology was not competitive, it chose other means to undermine Skyhook and damage and attempt to destroy its position in the marketplace for location positioning technology. In complete disregard of its common-law and statutory obligations, and in direct opposition to its public messaging encouraging open innovation, Google wielded its control over the Android operating system, as well as other Google mobile applications such as Google Maps, to force device manufacturers to use its technology rather than that of Skyhook, to terminate contractual obligations with Skyhook, and to otherwise force device manufacturers to sacrifice superior end user experience with Skyhook by threatening directly or indirectly to deny timely and equal access to evolving versions of the Android operating system and other Google mobile applications.

The father of Android said it hasn’t been served with the lawsuit yet so there’s no official response from the search giant. You can be sure we’ll keep an eye on this one.

[Via GigaOm]

  • Sandor

    Hmmm I wonder if the tone of ITM’s article about Apple dropping Skyhook for the Iphone was the same last april.

    • Sandor

      Ooopsie; no such article seems to exist …. guess it’s just more funny to call Google evil than Apple

      • Paul Johnson

        Perhaps there is no such article about Apple here because, unlike you, the editors of this site don’t believe in guilt by insinuation rather than by reasoning. If Motorola or HTC (excuse me, Company X), like Apple, had developed their own location-determining systems and used them on their hardware instead of Skyhook, there would be no claim for tortious interference with contract or fraudulent misrepresentations if they terminated their contract with Skyhook. But Google does not make its own hardware, and thus has the same potential for manipulation of OEMs that was found objectionable with respect to Microsoft.

        • marin

          What Paul said.

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