Google fined $6.8bn for 'illegal practices'

The EU has fined Google a record €4.3bn over Android antitrust

Google Fined RM20.3 Billion By EU Over Abuse Of Android OS

EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager yesterday fined Google €4.3bn after finding it had used its Android mobile operating system to squeeze out rivals. "It has cemented the dominance of its search engine", Vestager explained.

But it's not going to be easy to just ditch Android, and one of Bloomberg's sources actually suggests the company may not be that serious about the idea - calling it a "senior-engineer retention project" created to keep Google's talent busy so they don't go and join rival companies.

It is likely to stoke tensions between Europe and the US, which regulates the tech industry with a lighter hand and has complained that the European Union is singling out American companies for punishment. Google has already stopped paying OEMs and carriers in order to have Google search be the exclusive search offering on devices after the European Union started to dig into the issue back in 2014, so that's one thing off of Google's plate already.

Democratic Sen. Richard Blumenthal of CT tweeted that the fine should "be a wake-up call" to the Federal Trade Commission and "should lead United States enforcers to protect consumers".

It it fails to overturn it, the company will have 90 days to change its practices or risk facing an even larger fine.

The EU has fined Google a record €4.3bn over Android antitrust

The new sanction almost doubles the previous record European Union antitrust fine of €2.4 billion, which also targeted Google, in that case for the Silicon Valley titan's shopping comparison service in 2017.

Asked whether breaking up Google would solve the issue, a call made by a number of Google foes, she said she was not sure that was the solution. Crucially, by default all Android phones use Google as the default search engine and Google Chrome as the default web browser.

Following the EU's decision to slam Google with an exorbitant fine for anti-competitive behavior - an unprecedented $5 billion - CEO Sundar Pichai published a memo where he outlines why Google requires smartphone makers to set Chrome and Search as default services if they want access to the Google Play Store.

Levies are based on revenue in the market being probed and can't exceed 10 percent of a company's global annual revenue.

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