Google to compete with rivals

In its latest proposal to ward off fresh EU antitrust penalties


Reuters August 04, 2019
PHOTO: REUTERS

BRUSSELS/ BENGALURU: Alphabet Inc’s Google will allow rivals to compete to be the default search engines on new Android devices in Europe, but they will have to pay for the privilege. In its latest proposal to ward off fresh EU antitrust penalties, Google on Friday announced plans to auction spots on a “choice screen” from which users will select their preferred search engine. The move comes a year after the European Commission fined the US tech giant $4.81 billion for blocking rivals by pre-installing its Chrome browser and search app on Android smartphones and notebooks. The EU competition enforcer also ordered the company to halt its anti-competitive practices or face fines up to 5% of Alphabet’s average daily worldwide turnover. Google said in a blog post that users in Europe will, from early 2020, be able to pick a default search engine from four options, including Google, when they set up a new Android smartphone or tablet.  

Published in The Express Tribune, August 4th, 2019.

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