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Oracle's headquarters in Redwood Shores, California. Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

A federal appeals court ruled in favor of tech giant Oracle's multi-billion-dollar copyright-infringement claim against Alphabet, which a lower court had previously denied, Bloomberg reports.

Why it matters: The dispute is over APIs (application programming interfaces), the bridges that software systems use to connect. APIs are seen as a way for tech to become more open. If Oracle's victory survives further appeal, and more companies assert copyright over similar APIs, Alphabet and others claim tech innovation could suffer.

The background: Oracle claims Google's parent company, Alphabet, made illegal use of Oracle-copyrighted Java code in its Android mobile operating system. Alphabet says it had a "fair use" right to aspects of the Java code.

What Google is saying: From a spokesperson: “We are disappointed the court reversed the jury finding that Java is open and free for everyone. This type of ruling will make apps and online services more expensive for users. We are considering our options.”

Go deeper

Updated 6 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

  1. Health: Most vulnerable Americans aren't getting enough vaccine information — Fauci says Trump administration's lack of facts on COVID "very likely" cost lives.
  2. Politics: Biden unveils "wartime" COVID strategyBiden's COVID-19 bubble.
  3. Vaccine: Florida requiring proof of residency to get vaccine — CDC extends interval between vaccine doses for exceptional cases.
  4. World: Hong Kong to put tens of thousands on lockdown as cases surge.
  5. Sports: 2021 Tokyo Olympics hang in the balance.
  6. 🎧 Podcast: Carbon Health's CEO on unsticking the vaccine bottleneck.

Trump impeachment trial to start week of Feb. 8, Schumer says

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer. Photo: The Washington Post via Getty

The Senate will begin former President Trump's impeachment trial the week of Feb. 8, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced Friday on the Senate floor.

The state of play: Schumer announced the schedule after reaching an agreement with Republicans. The House will transmit the article of impeachment against the former president late Monday.

8 hours ago - Health

CDC extends interval between COVID vaccine doses for exceptional cases

Photo: Joseph Prezioso/AFP via Getty

Patients can space out the two doses of the coronavirus vaccine by up to six weeks if it’s "not feasible" to follow the shorter recommended window, according to updated guidance from the Centers for Disease and Control and Prevention.

Driving the news: With the prospect of vaccine shortages and a low likelihood that supply will expand before April, the latest changes could provide a path to vaccinate more Americans — a top priority for President Biden.