Google formally hit with antitrust action

15 April 2015

google As predicted, EU regulators have formally accused Google of violating antitrust laws and abusing its dominance to push their own products.

In a statement, regulators said they'd reached the preliminary decision that that search behemoth "systematically positions and prominently displays its comparison shopping service in its general search results pages, irrespective of its merits." According to those throwing accusations around, this conduct has been going on since 2008.

The statement reads: "The commission is concerned that users do not necessarily see the most relevant results in response to queries - to the detriment of consumers and rival comparison shopping services, as well as stifling innovation."

Regulators also opened a separate formal investigation into Google’s Android practices, which could see an end to bloatware for users.

A final ruling from the EU could come at the end of the year, as Google have to make their case first. Worryingly for Google, this could see other territories making similar judgements against them.

Amit Singhal, vice president of Google Search, said the company strongly disagrees "with the need to issue a statement of objections and look forward to making our case over the weeks ahead."

"Dominance as such is not a problem," said EU antitrust chief, Margrethe Vestager; "However, dominant companies have a responsibility not to abuse their market position either in the market where they are dominant or in neighbouring markets - this is about consumers getting the best possible results of their query."

"This is nothing to with a company being American, Japanese or whatever,” she added; "If you want to compete in the European market you have to abide by EU rules."

TOPICS:   Technology   World News

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