The European Union has slapped Google with a record antitrust fine for abusing the supremacy of its Android mobile operating system. This being the second multibillion-dollar fine the union has handed the search engine company in just over a year.
European officials say Google’s parent company has unfairly championed its own services by prompting smartphone makers to pre-install Google apps Chrome and Search in a package with its app store, Play. It too said Google profaned competition rules by paying phone manufacturers to specially pre-install Google search on their gadgets and deterring them from merchandising phones that run other modified, or “forked,” versions of Android.
“Our case is about 3 types of restrictions that Google has imposed on Android device manufacturers and network operators to ensure that traffic on Android devices goes to Google search engine,” Margrethe Vestager, the European commissioner for competition, expressed in a statement. “In this way, Google has used Android as a vehicle to cement the dominance of its search engine. These practices have denied rivals the chance to innovate and compete on the merits. They have denied European consumers the benefits of effective competition in the important mobile sphere. This is illegal under EU antitrust rules.”
“Our decision stops Google from controlling which search and browser apps manufacturers can pre-install on Android devices or which Android operating system they can adopt,” she continued.
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