Russia, Google reach $7.8 million settlement on Android case

The regulator ruled in October 2015 that Google violated anti-monopoly rules and should change agreements with mobile-device makers to allow them to pre-install third-party services. As a result, due to refusals in regards to other manufacturers of mobile devices, pre-installation of mobile applications, which is the most efficient app distribution channel, was fully reserved by Google.

Russian Federal Antimonopoly Agency (FAS) and Google have reached an amicable agreement in a dispute over corporation's refusal to comply with the antimonopoly watchdog's ruling with Google taking an obligation to pay all the imposed fines, RIA Novosti reported on Monday.

Google has just settled a lengthy Android antitrust case in Russian Federation. Google was fined with 438 million rubles (about $6.7 million).

The terms of the agreement state that Google will no longer demand exclusivity for its applications on Android devices in Russian Federation, and will not restrict manufacturers from pre-installing competing search engines or applications.

The Moscow-based company had accused the search giant's parent, Alphabet, of undermining competition by forcing phone makers to preinstall a set bundle of Google apps on Android.

"Today is an important day for Russian consumers as Google has agreed to take significant steps that open up its Android platform in Russia", said Arkady Volozh, Yandex CEO. The new widget will let users choose their default search engine on the home screen, whether it's Google or Yandex or another provider.

I am thankful to the Federal Antimonopoly Service for applying the law in a manner that effectively and efficiently restores competition to the market for the benefit of Russian users.

Google representatives didn't immediately respond to requests for comments on the settlement. While Google has reportedly said in response that the interests of both parties have been satisfied, further corroborating that a deal has indeed been reached.

  • Fernando Stephens