Items tagged with EU

Google is in essence in damage control model following a European Union fine imposed on the company totaling $5 billion. The European Commission has called on Google to cease its "illegal conduct" relating to its business operations with the Android operating system "in an effective manner within 90 days of the decision". The European Commission is skewering Google over these three critical violations. "First, Google's practices have denied rival search engines the possibility to compete on the merits," writes the European Commission. "The tying practices ensured the pre-installation of Google's search engine and browser on practically all Google Android devices and the exclusivity payments... Read more...
The European Union is set to hit Google with the largest fine in history over its Android operating system practices. The EU has been working on the case against Google for quite some time and judgment was looming earlier this week, but there was no word on just how large of a fine Google might face. The EU antitrust case against Google has been building for over a year now. A report has surfaced today that claims that the fine against Google will be 4.3 billion euros or about $5 billion. Such a massive fine would most certainly set a record for antitrust penalties according to a person familiar with the decision the EU is set to hand down. After the fine is levied against Google, the long-running... Read more...
Last month the EU tried to overhaul its old copyright law and step into the modern age. The problem was that the law as crafted and supported by many musicians was very overreaching to most. The copyright rules would have placed the responsibility on websites for checking for copyright infringements and forced those websites to pay to link to news stories. Basic linking is what the internet lives on and it is done on literally every website out there. The controversial regulation has now been defeated in a European parliament in a vote that came down 318-278. The legislation was known as the Copyright Directive and it had two highly contested sections including Articles 11 and 13. Article 11... Read more...
About a month ago, Google was hit with a massive fine by the EU that totaled $2.7 billion. That fine was levied against Google for breaching EU antitrust law and was more than twice as much as the second largest penalty the EU ever handed out for such a violation. That previous record high fine was leveled against Intel back in 2014. Understandably, the massive fine hit Google's parent company, Alphabet, hard in its recent quarterly earnings. The fine pushed Alphabet's bottom line down 27.7% for the quarter and was handed down after EU regulators found that Google was giving its own shopping service favorable placement in search results. Regulators are also looking into Google's dominance in... Read more...
Google just opened up a new battleground with GIFs. The European Union is attempting to din the global corporation for supposed anti-competitive Android bundle policies. Google has responded not only in the written form, but with a handful of surprisingly convincing GIFs. Google has been accused of paying OEMs to exclusively pre-install the Google search engine on smartphones. The EU wants to prevent the company from pressuring smartphone makers if it prevents them from offering competing operating systems based on Android. The “statement of object” in the complaint document stated that the EU plans to force Google to stop payments and discounts to smartphone makers who pre-install Google’s Play... Read more...
Google does not plan on going down without a fight in its battle against the European Union (EU). Google has formally rebuffed the EU’s antitrust charges in a blog post entitled “Improving Quality Isn’t Anti-Competitive”. Google has been accused of exclusively promoting its own shopping services to edge out its competition. The company could potentially be fined between $3.4 billion and $7.4 billion. This would amount to roughly one tenth of Google’s revenue. Google's general counsel Kent Walker has stated that these accusations are not only untrue, but illogical. He argued, “The Commission’s original SO drew such a narrow definition around online shopping services that it even excluded services... Read more...
Google is in the European Union’s dog house. The EU plans to fine the global corporation for supposed anti-competitive bundling policies. Google has been accused of paying smartphone producers to exclusively pre-install the Google search engine on smart devices. The EU wants to prevent the company from pressuring smartphone makers if it prevents from competing operating systems based on Android. The “statement of object” in the complaint document explains that the EU plans to force Google to stop its payments and discounts to smartphone makers who pre-install Google’s Play Store with Google Search. The document also noted that Google “cannot punish or threaten” companies who do not comply with... Read more...
Qualcomm is a dominant player in the mobile market when it comes to SoCs and 3G/4G basebands. In the baseband sector alone, Qualcomm held a commanding 61 percent of the global market in Q1 2015. However, the European Commission is a bit suspicious of Qualcomm’s dominance and is accusing the American company of impropriety with regards to its operations. The European Commission’s preliminary findings show that Qualcomm illegally gave money to a [currently] unnamed smartphone OEM in an effort to ensure that only its 3G and LTE baseband chips were used, effectively blocking any other competitors. In addition, the exclusivity clause is still in place according to the European Commission. And if that... Read more...
At this point, it can be assumed that most tech firms don't like dealing with the EU, and there are many different reasons for it. With Google, it could have to do with the fact that it keeps getting hit with anti-trust charges that it vehemently believes are nonsense. You might recall earlier this year when the company was effectively carpet-bombed with charges, mostly relating to the supposed anti-competitive nature of its search engine. Well, not surprisingly, Google still isn't lowering its defenses. In fact, it's making it clearer than ever that it believes the EU doesn't know what it's talking about with this particular matter. "The SO says that Google's displays of paid ads from merchants... Read more...
It’s hardly been a secret that Google is the European Union’s doghouse, but now the hostility is official. The EU delivered Google with a Statement of Objections that accuses it of skewing search results towards the company’s own services. To top things off, the EU is looking into accusations that Android, Google’s smartphone operating system, also violates antitrust rules. “In the case of Google I am concerned that the company has given an unfair advantage to its own comparison shopping service, in breach of EU antitrust rules,” said EU Commissioner Margrethe Vestager in a statement. “Google now has the opportunity to convince the Commission to the contrary. However, if the investigation confirmed... Read more...
Facing accusations from the Belgian Privacy Commission dating back to February that it is violating the privacy rights of its users, Facebook yesterday confirmed that the watchdog group had uncovered a "bug" that mistakenly tracked people even when they were not on the social media giant's website, but denied the body's assertion that the company gave users a "false sense of control" over their personal information. Facebook said that it has begun to fix the problem at hand, which leveraged cookies to track people who had not signed up for the service when they visited websites that employ certain types of Facebook technology. In a blog post, however, Facebook European Policy Chief Richard Allan... Read more...
Environmental stewardship may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Apple, but it’s certainly becoming a large part of the company’s self-perception under CEO Tim Cook’s leadership. Today, Apple announced that it will soon build two data centers in Europe to support its online services in the region and claimed that both data centers will be powered by “100 percent renewable energy.” Apple has been adding jobs feverishly in Europe, with more than 2,000 employees coming on board this year, and seems likely to add more positions when the data centers open in 2017. Apple is planning one data center in Denmark’s central Jutland and the other in County Galway, Ireland. The centers... Read more...
Following an interview with Re/code late last week, president Obama has managed to upset officials in Europe for a couple of rather blunt comments regarding America's success with the Internet. For starters, Obama claims that the EU's actions towards regulating the Internet is 'commercially-driven', and is the result of their companies being unable to compete with 'ours'. In perhaps his most blunt comment, Obama stated, "We have owned the Internet. Our companies have created it, expanded it, perfected it in ways that they can't compete. And oftentimes what is portrayed as high-minded positions on issues sometimes is just designed to carve out some of their commercial interests." While I think... Read more...
There’s some great news this week for Apple consumers living in Europe. Apple has introduced a new return policy for iTunes, App Store, and iBooks purchases that will allow consumers living in Europe, including Germany, France, Italy, and the UK to return digital purchases. Apple’s original terms and conditions stated that a user had the right to withdraw from a transaction “without charge and without giving any reason until delivery of the product has started.” However, once the product delivery had started, the purchase was final aside from some exceptions. The new terms and conditions now includes a 14-day return window for European consumers that states: You have... Read more...
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