Google has announced that as of March 2020, European users of new Android smartphones will be able to choose a search engine alternative to the one the company offers by default. The decision taken by the Moutain View giant in 2019 will enter into force in 31 European countries this year, which will be able to choose from three different options, depending on auction held by the company. In Portugal, users can choose between DuckDuckGo, Info.com and Qwant.
The ruling comes after three European Commission fines, the latest in March last year. However, the heaviest fine dates from July 2018, when the EC again accused Google of abusing its dominant market position, arguing that through the Android operating system requires smartphone manufacturers to install by default their Chrome search engine.
By March 2019, the company had already hinted that a change was coming. In response to the € 1.49 billion fine, both new and existing Android devices are now asking their users which browser to install on their device in Europe. In addition, it creates separate licenses for Google Play, Chrome, and their Search tool, as noted in manufacturer blog.
According to previously established system by the technology giant, each time one of the alternative search engines is selected as the default option on an Android smartphone, the company in question will have to pay Google a certain amount.