Google is once again in hot water; the company has been hit with a massive $5 billion (€4.3 billion) fine by the European Commission for breaking antitrust laws.
The huge fine was delivered because, according to the European Commission, Google imposed an illegal restriction on Android device manufacturers so that it could “cement its dominant position in general internet search”.
Specifically, Google is accused of forcing phone manufacturers to pre-install Google Search and Chrome if they wanted to also use the Play Store, paid other manufacturers to do so, and, worst of all, stopped manufacturers from using alternative, unofficial Android versions.
For example, this is the reason why Amazon’s Fire tablets don’t have access to Google Play. As you know, they’re based on an Android fork called Fire OS.
“Today, mobile internet makes up more than half of global internet traffic. It has changed the lives of millions of Europeans. Our case is about three types of restrictions that Google has imposed on Android device manufacturers and network operators to ensure that traffic on Android devices goes to the Google search engine. 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,” stated Commissioner Margrethe Vestager.
Now, Google is under pressure to change its tactics, because, if it does not, it could receive penalties of up to 5% of the average daily worldwide turnover of Alphabet.
This is not the first time that Google has to handle a huge fine. In June 2017, the company was fined €2.42 billion for using similar bullish tactics.
Also read: ✍France Will Take Google And Apple To Court✍