The European Commission has had its say, and laid down judgement on Google’s violation of the EU’s anti-trust laws with regards to the way the company handles its Android platform.
Yes, we now know that they will be forced to pay a €4.3 billion ($5 billion) fine, which surpasses the previous record for such a violation in the EU, also held by Google curiously enough, but what has the tech giant actually been found guilty of?
According to Bloomberg, the amount is close to the figure that Netherlands contributes to the EU annual budget each year, with Google said to have abused the influence of the Android mobile platforms on three specific fronts.
The first is “forcing” Android device manufacturers to pre-install Chrome and Search as the default browser and search application, should they wish to have Play Store access on their phones or tablets.
The second is preventing the use of forked versions of Android on devices, along with not placing support measures in place for such variants of their operating system.
Thirdly, the company was found to have made illegal payments to companies in order to bundle specific Google services on Android devices. A practice that should have ceased in 2014.
Now the company will have 90 days in order to stop all of the above anti-trust law violations, but the company has planned to appeal the fine and the European Commission’s findings.
“Android has created more choice for everyone, not less. A vibrant ecosystem, rapid innovation, and lower prices are classic hallmarks of robust competition… We will appeal the Commission’s decision,” noted a Google spokesperson to The Verge.
As such, the legal process that Google is aiming to undertake means this issue is far from over, and could take a few years in order to be resolved. As for what will happen to smartphone space in the EU during that time, remains to be seen.[Image – CC0 Pixabay]