Google: EC statement of objections 'wrong as a matter of fact, law, and economics'

  • Google lodged its response to the European Commissions allegations against the company that it was engaging in anti-copmetitve practices on Thursday. 

  • In April, the EC accused Google of 'systematically favouring' its own shopping service in search results - but Kent Walker, a senior vice president at Google, said the company was merely providing users with the 'most relevant' ads and search results. 

  • Mr. Walker said the the remedy proposed by the EC, that Google treats its own shopping comparison service and those of its rivals in the same way, was 'peculiar and problematic'. 

Useful Resource: Kent Walker's blog post

European Commission begins anti-trust proceedings against Google

europe v google
  • 'Statement of Objections' sent to the internet giant alleging it engaged in anti-competitive practices by 'systematically favouring' its shopping service in search results. 

I am concerned that the company has given an unfair advantage to its own comparison shopping service, in breach of EU antitrust rules. Google now has the opportunity to convince the Commission to the contrary.
— Margrethe Vestage, Commissioner for competition policy

Google: We respectfully but strongly disagree’s clear that (a) there’s a ton of competition (including from Amazon and eBay, two of the biggest shopping sites in the world) and (b) Google’s shopping results have not the harmed the competition.
— Amit Singhal, Senior Vice President of Google Search
  • Google said they looked forward to making their case in the coming weeks - they have 10 weeks to respond to the European Commission's allegations. 

EC to open separate probe into Android operating system

  • Investigation follows two complaints and will assess whether Google has breached EU anti-trust rules by hindering the development of other mobile operating systems. 

  • Investigation based on three allegations, that have yet to be proven:

  1. That Google hindered rivals by insisting that Google apps and services be preinstalled on Android devices.

  2. That Google has prevented developers from 'marketing modified and potentially competing versions of Android'. 

  3. That Google has hindered rivals and market development by 'tying or bundling certain Google applications and services distributed on Android devices with other Google applications'. 

  • The Commission says the opening of the investigation does not prejudge the outcome.

Google: With success comes scrutiny

  • Responding to the EC's investigation into the operating system, Google said Android 'has helped create more choice and innovation on mobile than ever before'. 

  • The company also noted that in comparison to Apple, 'there are far fewer Google apps pre-installed on Android phones than Apple apps on iOS devices'.