The 10 Ugliest Legal Disputes Of 2011


6. Google And Microsoft Battle Over Cloud Contract

Google and Microsoft were constantly butting competitive heads in 2011 and this litigation was one of the more visible results. In January Google won an injunction halting a nearly $60 million cloud computing contract that had been awarded to Microsoft by the U.S. Department of the Interior. The stakes are high: Google is trying to expand sales of its Google Apps beyond individual users to businesses and government organizations, while Microsoft is trying to maintain the dominant position it holds with its Microsoft Office and other desktop and small business software. Microsoft, for example, beat Google for a cloud e-mail migration contract with the city of San Francisco, a counter-point to the high-visibility deal Google won from the City of Los Angeles in 2009. In this case the Interior Department decided to start over to pick a cloud application vendor, citing changes in the cloud landscape since first awarding the contract to Microsoft. Given that decision, a judge dismissed the Google lawsuit – after it apparently accomplished its goal.