The European Commission has fined Google with an unprecedented penalty of 4.3 billion Euros (about 5 billion dollars) for breaching EU antitrust rules. The European Commission determined that since 2011, Google has been imposing unlawful restrictions on Android device manufacturers and mobile network operators to establish the dominant position of its search engine. In particular, the EU Commission alleges that, Google -
- 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);
- Paid certain large manufacturers and mobile network operators on condition that they exclusively pre-install the Google Search app on their devices; and
- Prevented manufacturers that wished to pre-install Google apps from selling even a single smart mobile device running on alternative versions of Android that were not approved by Google (so-called "Android forks").
In accordance with the EU Commission’s decision, Google must now bring this conduct effectively to an end within 90 days of the date of the decision, or face penalty payments of up to 5% of the average daily worldwide turnover of Alphabet, Google's parent company.