"Android Created More Choice For Everyone": Google After EU Slaps Fine

The penalty is nearly double the previous record of 2.4 billion euros which the US tech company was ordered to pay last year over its online shopping search service

The European Commission fine will exceed last year's then-record €2.4 billion penalty following an investigation into Google's shopping-search service.

EU Commissioner Margrethe Vestager, in charge of competition policy, said, "Today, mobile internet makes up more than half of global internet traffic".

She further went on to state how these restrictions have denied consumers the opportunity to benefit from a healthy competition between the tech giant and its rival, deeming any such practices illegal.

The Google CEO said the EU's decision ignores the fact that Android has to compete with Apple, and the choice the mobile operating system offers billions of consumers around the world.

Google (googl) also broke the rules by stopping manufacturers who preinstall Google's Android apps from selling phones using a non-Google version of Android. Additionally, the company made payments to larger manufacturers on the condition that they exclusively pre-install the Search app, rather than installing apps from other search tools.

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Furthermore, Google's tight control of the Android OS licensing has also prevented the proliferation of Android operating system forks where competitors could have gained a similar foothold.

Google has been ordered to pay a record-breaking €4.34bn (£3.8bn/$5bn) fine, which the company states is unjustified given that "Android has created more choice for everyone, not less".

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The company stands accused of abusing its dominant position in the market by making tie-ups with phone makers like South Korea's Samsung and China's Huawei, therefore blocking rivals and hindering competition.

"A healthy, thriving Android ecosystem is in everyone's interest, and we've shown we're willing to make changes", he added.

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European Union officials have been investigating Google contracts that require manufacturers of Android smartphones to take the U.S. company's search and browser apps, and other services when they want to license the Play app store. The other practices banned by the European Union include Google's payments that were conditional on exclusively pre-installing Google Search and preventing device makers from installing competing versions of Android. In this way it has cemented the dominance of its search engine.

The Commission's argument is largely predicated on contracts Google has with manufacturers to ensure Google apps and services come preinstalled on Android devices.

Google said that it will appeal the $5 billion fine. "This harmed competition by significantly reducing their incentives to pre-install competing search apps", the EC said, but noted this practice ended in 2014.

The Commission decision requires Google to bring its illegal conduct to an end in an effective manner within 90 days of the decision.

"Google claims it is a free market for users, but that's just not true in practice". He also says that the rules imposed by Google are meant to "ensure technical compatibility", and that they're optional.

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