Google might be subject to a fresh competition probe after Russia’s leading search engine complained with relevant authorities. Yandex argues that Google has an unfair advantage since it insights device manufacturers set Google as the basic (default) search setting so as to pre-install Google’s play store. Currently, Google Play is known as the safest and most abundant marketplace for mobile apps and other content for Android gadgets.
At this point in time, Google is yet to respond to the Yandex allegations. According to our understanding, the company is yet to see the complaint filed with the FAS (Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service). Most likely, Google will lay its defenses in the fact that manufacturers are free to install rival services if they opt not to pre-install its other software.
The world’s leading search engine could also argue that customers are free to use other search services (including the Yandex search application) after buying and Android tablet or smartphone.
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Not the First Time Complaints are Lodged Against Android
In the past, the likes of Microsoft have made complaints to the European Commission about the Android OS acting as a Trojan for Google’s services. The EC said that it’d take it further regarding such complaints if they didn’t receive a formal and ‘adequate’ response from Google. Currently, the EU anti-trust watchdogs are also carrying out separate probes into Google’s advertising and search business.
Yandex Market Share Decline
Reportedly, Yandex decided to make the complaints after it was contacted by three electronics companies (Fly, Explay and Prestigio) saying they were “no longer able” to preinstall Yandex’s services on their Android handsets following Google’s restrictions. Yandex says that these restrictions include a take-it-or-leave-it rule whereby manufacturers have the option to install the full set of Google’s products (Google Translate, YouTube, Gmail, Google Play, Google Search setting, etc.). The alternative is to opt out altogether.
The Russian search services provider says that Google is increasingly refusing OEMs from pre-installing their devices with competitor services.
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