EU fines Google record €4.3bn over Android

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The European Commission has hit Google with a €4.3 billion (~$5.6 billion) fine, imposing a record penalty on the US group for abusing its dominant position in the Android operating system for mobile phones. The decision takes aim at a core part of Google’s business strategy over the past decade, outlawing restrictions on its Android operating system that allegedly entrenched Google’s dominance in online search at a time when consumers were moving from desktop to mobile devices. The commission found that Google had used illegal “tying” methods to force phonemakers to pre-install Google services and apps, such as search and Chrome, as a condition of using Google Play, the smartphone app store. It also determined that mobile operating networks and device manufacturers were also paid anti-competitive financial incentives if they pre-installed Google search and no other rival services. A third leg of the case relates to contractual restrictions that stopped manufacturers from selling phones using rival operating systems developed on the Android open source code. Under such antitrust decisions, Google would be expected to end the illegal practices, forcing amendments to its operations that could have implications for its future standing in the market for mobile and other devices.

EU fines Google record €4.3bn over Android Google faces record multibillion fine from EU over Android