Back in July Google was handed a $5 billion fine by the European Commission for breaching European Union antitrust rules.

To explain it briefly (you can find the full ruling here) Google required manufacturers of Android smartphones to pre-install Google Search and Chrome in order to use the Play Store. Additionally it prevented manufacturers who wished to use these apps from Google from making any Android devices not licensed by Google.

Google has announced this week that it has appealed that decision but also detailed how it will comply with the European Commission’s ruling.

“First, we’re updating the compatibility agreements with mobile device makers that set out how Android is used to develop smartphones and tablets. Going forward, Android partners wishing to distribute Google apps may also build non-compatible, or forked, smartphones and tablets for the European Economic Area,” wrote senior vice president of platforms and ecosystems at Google, Hiroshi Lockheimer.

The second measure Google will take in an effort to comply with the EC’s ruling is a rather big one and might mean that Android devices become more expensive in the European Economic Area.

Device manufacturers will be able to license Google Apps Suite separately from the Google Search app and Chrome browser. Additionally Google Search and Chrome can be licensed separately as well. The trouble is that manufacturers will now have to pay a fee to license these apps.

Granted, manufacturers could abandon these apps in favour of others but it will only be for the EU region.

These new licensing options will come into effect on 29th October for all new smartphones and tablet launched in the European Economic Area.


[Source – Google] [Image – CC 0 Pixabay]
Brendyn Lotz writes news, reviews, and opinion pieces for Hypertext. His interests include SMEs, innovation on the African continent, cybersecurity, blockchain, games, geek culture and YouTube.