Last week the European Union announced the all-time high of 2,4 billion € fine that Google must front in response of an alleged abuse of dominant position.
The sanction imposed to the tech giant rises as the biggest the European Commission has ever handed, doubling Intel’s from 2009, although being considerably far from the 79 bn € of its annual revenue. Moreover, the hefty fine accompanies along the mandate to remedy the issue in 90 days, but leaving its nature to the company.
The investigation goes back to 2008, whereas Google started to implement the reported technique in Germany and in the UK, following France, Netherlands, Spain and Czech Republic within five years and finally in Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Norway, Poland and Sweden in November 2013.
Commissioner Margrethe Vestager explained how the Silicon Valley company infringes antitrust policies and abuses of its position of dominance in the search engine industry. Whilst holding a position of dominance is not prohibited by the European regulation, using it to restrict the entrance of major competitors results is a forbidden abuse.
Focusing on the first component, it is reasonable to admit that Google dominates the search engine market, providing over 90% of the internet queries.
Additionally, the American company not only unreasonably highlighted his products over his major competitors, but also demoted them to lower positions in the first page or to subsequent pages, giving Google an illegal advantage since the platform is obligated to give the user a disposal arranged in order of importance.