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Consumers Know Google Is Best, Says The Search Engine’s Lawyer Condoning EU Market Abuse Ruling

Consumers Know Google Is Best, Says The Search Engine’s Lawyer Condoning EU Market Abuse Ruling
Google is used by billions of people because they consider it the best, and not because of any arrangements or deals that the firm struck to stay competitive, Alphabet’s Google's lawyer said on Friday, capping up a week of hearing as the United Stets based internet giant battles a record $5 billion antitrust punishment.
In 2018, the European Commission fined Alphabet's Google 4.34 billion euros ($5 billion) for exploiting its Android mobile operating system to hinder competitors and consolidate its dominance in general internet searching since 2011.
Deals mandating smartphone makers to pre-install the Google Search app and the Chrome browser software alongside Google Play, as well as deals banning specific versions of Android, are at the core of the issue.
"The reason why billions of people choose Google as their search tool every day is not because of an abuse of dominance. It's because it's the best," lawyer Meredith Pickford told the EU's General Court, the bloc's second-highest.
The deals made by Google were intended to keep Google competitive and not intended to be anti-competitive, Pickford said.
"You can still compete hard and compete on the merits. Consumers aren't stupid. If Bing or another search engine were better than Google, people would turn to it," he said, referring to a rival Microsoft Corp search engine.
"Successful companies don't stay successful by resting on their laurels and failing to compete," Pickford told the court.
The deals with smartphone makers demonstrated that Google had loaded the deck in its favor and asked judges to support the Commission's verdict and penalties, the European Commission's lawyer, Nicholas Khan, said.
"Google gives itself the laurel wreath even before the race has started," Khan said. "The scale of the practices entirely justify the fine that was imposed."
It was not clear when there will be a verdict in the case, which is T-604/18 Google vs European Commission

Christopher J. Mitchell

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