At a time when America’s big digital media platforms are bracing for fines related to Europe’s new consumer data privacy regulations, the European Commission has fined Google the old fashioned way -- for antitrust.
The commission this morning announced a record $5 billion fineagainst Google as part of an eight-year antitrust probe into the business practices it has used to give its Android operating system a dominant market position.
The commission charged that Google’s restrictive licensing practices benefit its own service on Android devices, precluding competitors from gaining access.
The decision brings to $7.8 billion the total fines levied by Europe against Google, including the $2.8 billion fine it issued last year related to Google’s “Google Shopping” search services.
Observers expect more European fines to be issued soon, related to Google’s online display advertising contracts.