Google Hit With Record USD 5 Billion Fine by EU Over Android
It is being seen as the most important of three EU cases against Google.
Representative Image. (Image: REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration)
Alphabet Inc's Google has been fined a record 4.3 billion euros ($5.00 billion) by the European Union over its Android system. Google Chief Executive Officer Sundar Pichai had a call with EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager late Tuesday for a meeting, Bloomberg reported citing a source.
The EU antitrust enforcer has charged Google with using its dominant Android to marginalise rivals following a three-year-long investigation - seen as the most important of three EU cases against the world's most popular internet search engine.
The penalty is nearly double the previous record of 2.4 billion euros which the U.S. tech company was ordered to pay last year over its online shopping search service.
It represents just over two weeks of revenue for Google parent Alphabet Inc. and would scarcely dent its cash reserves of $102.9 billion. But it could add to a brewing trade war between Brussels and Washington.
Google said it would appeal the fine.
"Android has created more choice for everyone, not less. A vibrant ecosystem, rapid innovation and lower prices are classic hallmarks of robust competition," it said.
EU antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager's boss, Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, is due to meet U.S. President Donald Trump at the White House next Wednesday in an effort to avert threatened new tariffs on EU cars amid Trump's complaints over the U.S. trade deficit.
Vestager also ordered Google to halt anti-competitive practices in contractual deals with smartphone makers and telecoms providers within 90 days or face additional penalties of up to 5 percent of parent Alphabet's average daily worldwide turnover.
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