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Google fined a record €4.3bn by EU over claims of Android market abuse

Google hit with biggest EU fine since June last year

Google has been fined a record €4.3 billion by the European Union over claims of anti-competitive practices with the Android operating system.

And the fine comes with a demand that the company must discontinue the alleged anti-competitive practices within 90 days.

The fine is the biggest-ever anti-trust penalty levied in the European Union since Google was fined €2.1 billion over anti-competitive practices with its Google Shopping service back in June 2017.

It comes one month after Reuters suggested that EU competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager was poised to conclude that Google imposed illegal terms on Android device makers "which harmed competition and cut consumer choice".

The ruling had been expected in June, but was put back to avoid overshadowing President Trump's visit to Europe, and becoming another issue in Trump's claim of unfair US-EU trade.

The Android anti-trust case was opened in 2015, with Vestager claiming at the time: "We believe that Google's behaviour denies consumers a wider choice of mobile apps and services, and stands in the way of innovation by other players."

She continued: "Our concern is that by requiring phone makers and operators to pre-load a set of Google apps, rather than letting them decide for themselves which apps to load, Google might have cut-off one of the main ways that new apps can reach customers."

However, Google claims that an unbundling order would change the Android business model, forcing it to either take more advertising, charge a licence fee for the use of its apps or even find ways to extricate Android from open source. The result, it claims, is likely to be more expensive smartphones for end users.
Google fined a record €4.3bn by EU over claims of Android market abuse Reviewed by Akande Boluwatife on July 18, 2018 Rating: 5

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