Business & Economy

Australia’s competition regulator proposes steps to counter Google dominance

Sydney, Australia, Oct 28 (EFE).- Australia’s competition regulator on Thursday published a series of recommendations to counteract the dominance of the Google’s search engine on mobile devices.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) intends to implement a mandatory search engine choice screen, initially on new and existing Android devices, among other recommendations, it said in a report.

“Choice screens can give consumers the opportunity to make an informed choice about the search engine they use,” ACCC chair Rod Sims said in a statement.

According to the document, Google dominates 94 percent of the search engine market in Australia, thanks in part to Google Search being the default setting on its Chrome browser as well as Apple’s Safari, which are both factory installed on most mobile devices.

This dominance is “entrenched by the large sums of money it pays to be the default search engine on Apple’s Safari browser, its ownership of Chrome and by the pre-installation and default arrangements it has in place with competing browser suppliers and device manufacturers that use Google’s Android operating system,” the report said.

“Google pays billions of dollars each year for these placements, which illustrates how being the default search engine is extremely valuable to Google’s business model,” added Sims.

According to an ACCC survey, most consumers tend to keep the browser and search engine pre-installed on their devices, while one in four does not know how to change it.

The ACCC’s proposal for choice screens is expected to also benefit expansion for competitors who may offer more options around issues such as privacy and data collection. EFE


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