A lawsuit between Google and Oracle, relating to misused patents in Android smartphones, has turned up a golden nugget of information. According to the proceedings, Google may actually make more from the software they bundle in iPhones than they do from selling Android phones.
Google has offered to pay Oracle $2.8 million for the patent violations, but when extrapolated, overall, it’s estimated that Google has made only $543 million from Android sales between 2008 and 2011. Charles Arthur over at the Guardian states, “The $2.8m offer, at a combined rate of 0.515%, suggests that Android’s total revenue since the launch of the first handsets at the end of 2008 through to the end of 2011 was $543m. Patent payments relating to phones are generally made on a per-handset basis at a fixed licence fee for any phones that would be judged to infringe the relevant patents.”
On the one hand, Google pays Apple a cool billion dollars to include Google Search as the primary search in iOS devices, but on the other Google is making $2.3 billion from being on iOS..
Matthew Panzarino, commenting on the absurd differential for The Next Web:
Right now Google makes some $2.5B a year in revenue in mobile, most of it from mobile ads, and the search numbers mean that a large chunk of that comes from iOS devices. This means that the earnings from Android are dwarfed by the chunk of those earnings that come in via iPhone … If you do the math, figuring that it has been three years since 2008, Android is extremely likely to only have made $183M in revenue from Android in 2011, making its earnings from the iPhone somewhere around the $2.3B mark in the same year.
Think about that for a second. The majority of mobile money making its way to Google comes from Apple products. Android may have the lead in marketshare at this point, but Apple clearly has all the money.