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Google Loses Key Appeal on Antitrust Battle with EU

On Wednesday, The European Union General Court upheld the antitrust ruling against Google, dismissing the key appeal of the tech giant. 

Accordingly, the EU explained that the European Commission, the executive arm of the EU, made the right decision on fining the firm. 

Remarkably, this represents a landmark moment for EU policy that could affect the business models of highly valued tech companies.

Moreover, the order came after the Commission accused Google that it favored its comparison shopping services. 

This priced the Alphabet unit with a $2.80 billion fine for breaching antitrust rules. Consequently, the firm contested the decision using the EU’s second-highest court.

Accordingly, the court said that there is enough evidence to prove the harmful behavior of Google in the stated area. 

The recent verdict could still be appealed to the European Court of Justice (ECJ), the EU’s highest court. 

The outcome of this case is significant as it supports the antitrust arguments of the EU’s influential competition  towards the American tech firms. 

Similar to this shopping comparison case, Google has other two major antitrust cases. This involves the Android and AdSense in 2018 and 2019 respectively. 

Subsequently, these cases went through the same current appeal process. 

In a similar case, the EU’s General Court ruled out an antitrust case brought by the European Commission against Apple Inc. last July 2020. 

The legislation body accepted the appeal of the tech giant against the commission. The evidence provided showed that the Irish government did not give a tax advantage to the iPhone maker.

At the same time, the ruling shone a light that the legislative body has to bear the brunt of the evidence and not the defendant.

Impact for Big Tech Like Google.

Currently, the European Union plans to toughen its rules to guarantee fair competition across its twenty-seven member nations. 

In the stated case, experts mentioned that the General Court’s ruling would fasten up the Digital Markets Act (DMA).

Moreover, the DMA, when approved, will supervise any behavior that closes off the European markets. 

Consequently, this could open doors for modifications in parts of the business models of the tech giants.

One particular change could be the end of self-preferencing. This would provide smaller developers with an equal chance of being found and chosen by consumers. 

Furthermore, regulators propose to restrict target advertising to secure more privacy to users, affecting the operations in the digital market.

Meanwhile, Google-Parent Alphabet Class A weakened 0.07% or 2.25 points to $2,978.37 per share yesterday. In addition, its share price unchanged in the post-trading market. 

 

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