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Posted at 10:01 AM ET, 04/09/2013

Google faces new E.U. complaint over mobile search

Microsoft, Oracle, Kayak and other technology and search companies in the FairSearch.org coalition have filed a complaint with the European Union over Google’s Android mobile operating system, saying that the platform gives the tech giant an unfair advantage in mobile search.

The European Commission is currently reviewing Google’s desktop search practices for antitrust violations. FairSearch has been a vocal opponent of Google in the past. Following this year’s Federal Trade Commission ruling that Google search practices have not hurt consumers, the group said that it would turn its attention to the European Union.

The complaint alleges that Google’s free distribution of the Android platform is part of “deceptive conduct” to lock in the mobile search market.

“Google is using its Android mobile operating system as a ‘Trojan Horse’ to deceive partners, monopolize the mobile marketplace and control consumer data,” said Thomas Vinje, the coalition’s Brussels-based counsel.

FairSearch said that Google requires smartphone makers to install many Google programs on smartphones in order to include more popular apps such as Google Maps and YouTube. The group also said that it’s important to address these issues now, as users increase the amount of time they spend using — and searching on — mobile devices.

When asked about the complaint, Google said in a statement that it continues “to work cooperatively with the European Commission.”

By  |  10:01 AM ET, 04/09/2013

 
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