Google appeals record EU antitrust fine

Technology company Google has announced it has appealed a record antitrust fine by the European Union (EU) based on allegations that this technology giant has engaged in anticompetitive practices through its dominance. Android.

Google appeals record EU antitrust fine
Google appeals record EU antitrust fine

Specifically, Google wants to oppose the decision made in 2018 by the European Commission (EC), the bloc's top antitrust enforcement agency, to impose a fine of 4.34 billion euros ($5 billion). ) to this company. To date, this is still the largest fine that Brussels has ever imposed for anti-competitive behavior.

In its initial decision, the EC said Google's practices were limiting competition and reducing choice for consumers.

Android is the most popular mobile operating system, surpassing Apple's iOS and is present on 80% of mobile devices in Europe. According to the EC ruling, Google broke EU rules when it required smartphone manufacturers to provide a bundle of Google apps if they wanted to use any app from the "supermarket". this technology.

This pack contains 11 apps, including YouTube, Maps, and Gmail. But regulators focus on the three apps with the largest market share: Google Search (the search engine), Chrome (the web-surfing tool), and the Play Store app store.

Google argues that because Android is free and open source, smartphone manufacturers or consumers can decide for themselves which apps to install on their devices.

Also, Google is the only company that bears the cost of developing and maintaining Android, so it has to find a way to offset that cost. Google's solution is to include apps that will generate revenue including Google Search and Chrome.

Google also argued that just because its apps come pre-installed on Android phones, it doesn't mean users can't download rival services.

The EC also raised an issue with Google's payments to telecommunications service providers and phone manufacturers to pre-install the Google Search app. But Google says those deals represent less than 5% of the market, so they can't hurt its rivals.

The above penalty is part of three antitrust fines totaling more than $8 billion that the EC has imposed on Google between 2017 and 2019. Other penalties focus on shopping and search, and Google is appealing all three.

But although the penalties are all very high, observers point out that Google can easily pay them and the fines do not do much in helping to expand competition in the market.

Google Tech News

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