Google challenges record $5bn EU antitrust fine

Irving Hamilton
October 10, 2018

Google was convicted in July by the EU of abusing its dominant position in Android and had until the 22nd of October to present solutions to the European Commission.

EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager ordered Google to "put an effective end to this conduct within 90 days or face penalty payments" of up to 5 per cent of its average daily turnover.

According to the New York Post, the Department of Justice is also looking into starting an investigation into Google's abuse of its Android monopoly in United States of America, meaning the company may soon be fighting regulators on two fronts.

In an e-mail to AFP, Google spokesman Al Verney confirmed that "we have now filed our appeal of the European Commission's Android decision at the General Court of the European Union".

"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. Although market dominance is not an illegal practice under European Union antitrust laws, regulators said dominant companies like Google have a "special responsibility" to ensure that competition is not restricted.

Google appeals EU's $5 billion fine over Android antitrust practices

In particular, Google has required manufacturers to pre-install the Google Search app and browser app (Chrome), as a condition for licensing Google's app store (the Play Store).

Reacting to the ruling, Google CEO Sundar Pichai said in July the company will appeal against the Commission's decision.

This fine comes not long after a $2.7 billion charge from the Commission over Google giving preferential treatment to its own shopping comparison tool in searches.

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