Google Defends Android Phone Maker Deals, Denies Carrot-and-Stick Tactics

Google stated offers with Android cellphone makers that landed it a document EUR 4.3-billion (roughly Rs. 37,230 crores) antitrust tremendous boosted competitors and rejected EU fees they have been a carrot-and-stick tactic that stifled rivals.

Google was addressing the second day of a week-long listening to because it tries to get Europe’s second-highest court docket to annul the tremendous and a European Commission order to make it loosen its search engine grip on Android gadgets.

Lawyers for Google and the EU competitors govt clashed over the corporate’s Mobile Application Distribution Agreements (MADAs) that require cellphone makers (OEMs) to pre-install the Google Search app and Chrome browser app in return for licensing Google Play at no cost.

“This licensing model is what attracted OEMs to the Android platform, and what enabled those OEMs to offer a consistent and high-quality user experience at the lowest possible price,” Google’s lawyer Alfonso Lamadrid instructed the General Court.

“People use Google because they choose to, not because they’re forced to,” he stated.

Commission lawyer Carlos Urraca Caviedes rejected the argument, calling the offers and different restrictions Google’s carrot-and-stick coverage in direction of cellphone makers.

“These helped Google ensured its competitors would not achieve critical mass to challenge its dominance,” he instructed the court docket.

He additionally stated such offers have been pointless in view of the market energy of Google, the world’s hottest Internet search engine, and its important variety of customers.

Urraca Caviedes stated what Google did “goes beyond what is necessary to develop and maintain the Android platform”.

A verdict might come subsequent 12 months. The case is T-604/18 Google vs European Commission.

© Thomson Reuters 2021

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