Russia, Google reach $7.8 million settlement on Android case

Ken Copeland
April 18, 2017

Google will develop an active "choice window" for the Chrome browser for devices now on the market, so that users can choose their default search engine when they next update their system, according to the FAS's statement.

In August previous year, Russian authorities slapped a 438 million ruble ($6.75m) fine on Google, concluding that the company was "forcing its partners to feature its services".

The Moscow-based company had accused the search giant's parent, Alphabet, of undermining competition by forcing phone makers to preinstall a set bundle of Google apps on Android.

The Android home-screen search bar was at the center of a two-year dispute between Google and Russian Federation regulators.

The American search engine giant agreed to pay a penalty of 438,067,400 million roubles or $7.8 million and to remove its anti-competitive restrictions from its agreements with manufacturers. This move will make room for apps like the the local Russian search engine Yandex NV. The amount of the fine consists of 9% of company's turnover on the Russian market in 2014 plus inflation.

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Russian officials and Google have reached an agreement to settle a two-year-old case against Google for requiring the pre-installation of some of its apps on mobile devices using the Android system.

The settlement also comes after an unsuccessful legal challenge by Google.

In a few months, Google will create for new devices in Russian Federation a new Chrome widget that will replace the current Google search widget on the home screen. The addition of a choice window provides users with the opportunity to choose their default search engine. This will expose a new "choice screen" enabling users to choose any of several search engines from "developers who will sign a commercial agreement on their inclusion to the choice screen". The company was found guilty of abusing its dominant position in the market for mobile devices running on Android.

"Implementation of the settlement's terms will be an effective means to secure competition between developers of mobile applications", said FAS head Igor Artemiev. The agreement was signed for six years and nine months.

Other reports by Guamnewswatch

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