Friday , September 24 2021

South Korea fines Google nearly $180 million



AA/Paris/Fatih KARAKAYA

The South Korean Competition Commission (FTC) announced Tuesday that it has fined global tech giant Google $207.4 billion ($176.8 million) for forcing smartphone manufacturers to use the Android mobile operating system only.

As a matter of fact, in 2016, the FTC launched an investigation into allegations that “Google blocked local smartphone manufacturers such as Samsung Electronics Co and LG Electronics Inc from using operating systems developed by their competitors,” according to the agency.

According to the commission, “This practice helped Google consolidate its dominant position in the mobile platform market and hindered innovation in the development of new operating systems for smart devices”.

Google has been a favorite of many countries, especially European countries, due to unfair competition for a while. It should be said that the American giant dominates the mobile operating systems market with 97.7%.

Google should make adjustments

Still, according to the Yonhap agency, “in addition to the fine, the FTC ordered Google LLC, Google Asia Pacific, and Google Korea to take corrective action.”
The American giant has announced its intention to appeal this decision, believing that it will “undermine the benefits that consumers enjoy.”
However, Google did not finish the FTC as it separately reviewed three other cases related to the alleged anti-competitive activities of the American giant.
Indeed, the commission is also investigating the possibility of forcing game publishers to be exclusively on the Google Play Store, as well as investigating “Google’s possible unfair practice regarding the sale of digital ads.”
In addition, Google had changed its billing policy. Therefore, the committee is investigating whether the 30% tax rate on developers complies with Korean law.
Last month, the National Assembly passed a bill to curb Google and Apple’s dominance over app billing systems, making South Korea the first country in the world to pass such a law.

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