(From FoxBusiness News)
The European Commission fined Google $5 billion (4.34 billion euros) for its “illegal practices” of pushing its Android apps on smartphone customers, the governing body said Wednesday.
The fine will exceed last year’s then-record 2.4 billion-euro penalty following an investigation into Google’s shopping-search service.
The commission said the tech giant must end its current conduct within the next 90 days or it will face penalty payments of up to 5% of the average daily worldwide turnover of Alphabet, the parent company of Google. It added that market dominance is not illegal under EU antitrust rules, but dominant companies have a “special responsibility” to not abuse their powerful position in the marketplace by restricting competition in markets “where they are dominant or in separate markets.”
“Google has used Android as a vehicle to cement the dominance of its search engine,” Commissioner Margrethe Vestager, said in a statement. “These practices have denied rivals the chance to innovate and compete on the merits. They have denied European consumers the benefits of effective competition in the important mobile sphere. This is illegal under EU antitrust rules.”