$4B Google Android Antitrust Fine Largely Upheld By EU Court

A ruling largely upheld by the European Union’s General Court on Wednesday means Google will likely need to continue applying some of the changes it has made to comply with the EU’s 2018 decision based on anticompetitive practices, according to a report.

The changes include offering users in the EU a choice screen of different search engines. One of those search engines Presearch, a decentralized search engine, offered in parts of Europe has managed to grow its business.

Since Google added Presearch in 2021, its daily searches have grown from about 200,000 daily to more than 4 million, Alex Carrabre, head of growth at Presearch, toldSearch & Performance Marketing Daily. “At the peak it was 6 million per day in the past 20 months,” he said. “It’s just in the Europe economic area.”

The 2018 decision by the EU competition regulator fined Google $4.33 billion for allegedly abusing the market dominance of its Android operating system for mobile phones to promote its Google search engine and Chrome browser on mobile devices. In 2019, the company announced it would give Android users in Europe a choice.

The Android case was the biggest of three antitrust fines totaling more than $8 billion that the EU has levied against Google since 2017—and it focused on mobile phones, reportsThe Wall Street Journal.

The “small victory” for Google after the EU court annulled one element of the decision that “alleged Google had broken competition laws by making revenue-sharing payments to manufacturers to exclusively pre-install only Google Search, not competing search engines.

WSJ reported that as a result, the court reduced the overall fine by about 5% to 4.13 billion euros, equivalent to around $4.12 billion.

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