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Microsoft, Nokia, Oracle And Others File Complaint Over Google's Android

By SiliconIndia  |   Tuesday, 09 April 2013, 05:45 Hrs
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Bangalore: For the past few years, Google has been under scrutiny by the regulators in the U.S and the European Union for its privacy practices. If the existing complaints are on Google manipulating the search results for its profit, the latest complaint is on its most popular operating system, Android.

FairSearch, one of the most outspoken critics of Google’s practices, through its Europe presence, has lodged a formal complaint with the EU’s antitrust watchdog over Google’s Android. FairSearch Europe has brought in companies like Microsoft and other small ones including Oracle, Nokia, Expedia and TripAdvisor in the group. The complaint states that Google is using Android “as a deceptive way to build advantages for key Google apps in 70 percent of the Smartphones shipped today.”

In particular, FairSearch deals an issue with Google’s licensing model for its suite of apps, which is termed as “must-have” by the group. These apps, which include Maps, Talk, YouTube and the like, are licensed by Google to OEM partners like Samsung or HTC. If an OEM wants to preload Google’s apps while the Android system is free, initially it must license the entire package. FairSearch claims that manufacturers are forced by the licensing terms to give Google’s apps prominent default placement on their phones, which is considered by the group to be anti-competitive.

Furthermore, as Google gives away Android, other software makers like Microsoft are unable to make profit of their own operating system. As the precise licensing terms between Google and the device manufacturers still exists as a matter of debate, the former is being investigated in Europe over its privacy policies as well as search business.

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