Google Faces Antitrust Investigation By FTC Over Android
According to a recent report, Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is looking into antitrust allegations against Google and their Android mobile OS.
US regulators reportedly launched the inquiry after meeting with rival tech companies saying that Google limits their access to Android in favor of its own apps and services, including Gmail, Chrome, and Maps. The antitrust investigation will try to determine if Google has created a monopoly that puts rivals at a disadvantage.
Google is already under a similar investigation for Android practices in Europe, such as the fact that the OS comes bundled with their own apps for email, browser, and more. As per Google Mobile Service license manufacturers has to use all of Google's apps on their devices if they wanted to use one of them. The European Commission's investigation suggests that because Android makes up over 50% of the smartphone market, manufacturers are forced in unfavorable terms.
Microsoft, of course, was itself dinged heavily in EU for pre-installing Internet Explorer on Windows 7 without giving consumers other browser options. Google's situation with Android is similar, given that it owns over 50 percent of the smartphone market.
As yet, there are no details on what the US antitrust investigation is about, but it is possible that the FTC could be looking into the same thing as the European regulators.
This isn't the first time Google has been targeted by the FTC in the US, as the regulating body conducted a probe into the company's search engine business in 2013. They eventually decided not to file charges. The FTC was heavily criticized for that decision, especially after it accidentally posted a document leaking the names of the complainants in the case.
This time, however, the FTC and European Commission are investigating Google at the same time, though not exactly for the same things There is still much to be determined to see if the FTC and DoJ will have a case in this Android investigation.
As soon as we get some more information about the possible European and US antitrust investigations into Google's mobile OS, we will let you guys know.