Google to Review CCI’s Antitrust Fine Over Allegation of Dominance in Android Market

Google on Friday said it will review Competition Commission’s (CCI) decision to impose a Rs. 1,338 crore penalty for alleged anti-competitive practice, and termed the order a “major setback” for Indian consumers and businesses.

In its first official response after the CCI order, Google said Android has created more choices for everyone and supports thousands of successful businesses in India and around the world.

“The CCI‘s decision is a major setback for Indian consumers and businesses, opening serious security risks for Indians who trust Android’s security features, and raising the cost of mobile devices for Indians,” a Google spokesperson said in an email statement.

Google said it will “review the decision to evaluate the next steps”.

The competition watchdog on Thursday slapped a steep penalty of Rs. 1,337.76 crore on Google for abusing its dominant position in multiple markets in relation to Android mobile devices and ordered the internet major to cease and desist from various unfair business practices.

The regulator, which passed the order after ordering a detailed probe more than three years ago, has also directed Google to modify its conduct within a defined timeline.

Android is a popular open-source, mobile operating system installed by original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) of smartphones and tablets.

CCI, which had started probing the case in April 2019, has directed that OEMs should not be restrained from choosing from among Google’s proprietary applications to be pre-installed and also not be forced to pre-install a bouquet of applications on their smart devices. 

In other news, Alphabet’s Google has also been sued in Texas for allegedly collecting biometric data of millions of Texans without obtaining proper consent, the attorney general’s office said in a statement on Thursday.

The complaint says that companies operating in Texas have been barred for more than a decade from collecting people’s faces, voices or other biometric data without advanced, informed consent.

The collection occurred through products like Google Photos, Google Assistant, and Nest Hub Max, the statement said.


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