Competition Commission of India slaps Rs 1,337 crore penalty on Googletext_fields
New Delhi: The country's competition regulator has fined Alphabet Inc's Google ₹ 1,337 crores for anti-competitive practices related to Android mobile devices.
The Competition Commission of India, or CCI, tweeted it fined Google for "abusing dominant position in multiple markets in the Android mobile device ecosystem."
Google operates and manages the Android OS (operating system) and licenses its other proprietary applications. The OEMs (original equipment manufacturers) use this OS and Google's apps on their mobile devices.
Accordingly, they enter into multiple agreements to govern their rights and obligations, such as Mobile Application Distribution Agreement (MADA).
"MADA assured that the most prominent search entry points i.e., search app, widget, and Chrome browser are pre-installed on Android devices, which accorded significant competitive edge to Google's search services over its competitors," the CCI said in a statement today.
"Further, Google also secured a significant competitive edge over its competitors, in relation to its other revenue-earning app i.e. YouTube on Android devices. The competitors of these services could never avail the same level of market access which Google secured and embedded for itself through MADA...create significant entry barriers for competitors of Google to enter or operate in the markets concerned," the CCI said.
The CCI said Google had argued about the competitive constraints being faced by Apple Inc.
The CCI said the differences in the two business models that affect the underlying incentives of business decisions are that Apple's business is primarily based on a vertically integrated smart device ecosystem, which focuses on sale of high-end smart devices with advanced software components.
"Whereas Google's business was found to be driven by the ultimate intent of increasing users on its platforms so that they interact with its revenue earning service i.e., online search which directly affects sale of online advertising services by Google," the CCI said.