Google calls European Union antitrust charges 'unfounded'

The EU charged Google with stifling competition and harming consumers

Google has finally responded to antitrust charges brought against it by the European Commission over how it presents search results, and its pugnacious reply potentially sets up a lengthy legal battle between the company and the regulator.

In the spring, the EU charged Google with stifling competition and harming consumers by favoring its comparison shopping services over those of its rivals. Google faces the possibility of billions of Euros worth of fines in the case.

But Google refuted the claims on Thursday, calling the Commission's concerns "unfounded." The company said its services actually increase choice for European consumers.

Google said that the EU has not adequately justified its charges, nor has has it provided any legal framework that would connect its claims with its proposed remedy.

In particular, the EU's charges don't take into account the continued rise of shopping services like Amazon and eBay, Kent Walker, senior vice president and general counsel at Google, said in a blog post.

Google's response could be a sign of years of legal battles to come in a case that already dates back to 2010.

The European Commission will carefully consider Google's response before taking any decision on how to proceed, spokesman Ricardo Cardoso said.

The Commission has proposed that Google show ads sourced and ranked by other companies within its own ads on its search results page, Google said. Google called that remedy problematic, saying it would harm the quality and relevance of its results.

If the Commission ultimately finds Google in the wrong, penalties could include fines of up to 10 percent of its annual revenue.

The Commission has also opened a separate antitrust investigation into Google's Android operating system. That inquiry revolves around the extent to which Google could abuse its dominant position by, among other factors, requiring manufacturers to bundle Google's services with the open-source system.

Google did not mention that investigation in its post on Thursday.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Google

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Zach Miners

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

GGG Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?