Skip to content

Court documents expose Google’s strategy to dominate search engines

By
May 2, 2024

Court documents publicly expose Google’s $20 billion payment to Apple, central to allegations of using wealth to dominate the search market

Google has paid Apple a massive $20 billion in 2022 to retain its position as the default search engine on Safari, the browser used on iPhones, iPads and Macs, according to court documents revealed in an ongoing U.S. Department of Justice antitrust lawsuit.

This disclosure forms the crux of the case against Google, with accusations of using financial leverage to suppress competition in the search engine market.

“Microsoft tried repeatedly to secure the default position for Bing on Apple devices,” according to a court filing. Despite offering up to 90% of advertising revenue, Apple declined these offers, emphasizing the superior quality and capabilities of Google’s search engine.

Apple’s Senior Vice President of Services, Eddy Cue, confirmed during his testimony that the payment was part of a longstanding agreement that has evolved significantly since the early 2000s. Initially a no-cost arrangement, it has grown into a deal so significant that, by 2021, Google was sending Apple more than $1 billion a month.

The legal battle has brought to light the strategic dynamics within the tech industry and strengthened concerns about barriers to entry for new players. Satya Nadella, Microsoft’s CEO, has publicly criticized the Google-Apple deal, stating that it “makes it impossible for other search engines like Bing to compete.”

The Department of Justice claims that Google’s practices undermine competition and harm consumers by maintaining high barriers to entry in the search engine market.

As both sides prepare to deliver their closing arguments, the outcome of this case could mark a pivotal moment in U.S. antitrust law and its application to tech giants.

The final verdict is expected to be announced later this year.

Source: Newsroom

Last Updated:  May 31, 2024 6:53 PM