Google tells EU courts that payments to phone makers give Android a fighting chance Apple

Google tells EU courts that payments to phone makers give Android a fighting chance Apple

Google was addressing the General Court on the third day of a week-long hearing as it tries to get judges to dismiss a record 4.3-billion-euro ($3.7 billion) EU antitrust fine and a European Commission order to loosen its search engine grip on Android devices. The EU competition watchdog had taken issue with two kinds of deals made with phone makers, one being payments for only pre-installing Google Search on their devices known as revenue sharing arrangements (RSAs) because these shut out rivals.

A sign is shown outside a Google building in Mountain View, California, near the company’s headquarters. On May 8, 2019, a sign is seen outside a Google building near the company’s headquarters in Mountain View, California, U.S. PARESH DAVE/REUTERS (Reuters) – LUXEMBOURG, Sept 29 (Reuters) – Payments to phone makers to pre-install just Google Search on their handsets were not intended to stifle competition, but were required for Android to wrest market share from Apple (AAPL.O), Alphabet’s (GOOGL.O) Google said on Wednesday.

Highlights

  • This was not the case and the payments were just to encourage phone makers, which were already generating money from other apps, to give Android a place, Google lawyer Assimakis Komninos told the court. “Google had to offer an offsetting revenue stream. An incentive to convince them to open up and adopt the Android platform. At the same time, the RSAs also helped them to keep prices down and compete more successfully with Apple,” he said. “And obviously, Google was getting in return a promotional opportunity, sole preinstallation, which allowed it to invest in a free OS (operating system), a free app store and so on.” On top of that, the RSAs only covered 5% of the market, Komninos said. Sign up to our tech newsletter to get the latest news and trends in the global technology industry.