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EU Fines Google Record $5 Billion In Android Case


European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager (file photo)

The European Commission has announced it is fining Google a record 4.34 billion euros ($5 billion) for breaching EU competition rules by imposing illegal restrictions on Android smartphone makers and mobile network operators.

"Google has used [its] Android [operating system] as a vehicle to cement the dominance of its search engine," EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said in a statement on July 18.

The commission ordered Google to end the practice within 90 days or face additional penalties.

"Google must now bring the conduct effectively to an end within 90 days or face penalty payments of up to 5 percent of the average daily worldwide turnover of Alphabet, Google's parent company," the statement said.

Google's practices "have denied rivals the chance to innovate and compete on [their] merits. They have denied European consumers the benefits of effective competition in the important mobile sphere," the statement said.

"This is illegal under EU antitrust rules."

The fine is almost twice as high as the previous record of 2.4 billion euros, which Alphabet was ordered to pay last year over its online shopping search service.

However, the fine amounts to just over two weeks of revenue for Alphabet, which has cash reserves of $102.9 billion.

In a statement, Google said it will appeal the fine.

With reporting by Rikard Jozwiak
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