U.K markets regulator critiques Apple's search engine deal with Google

The default search engine on Safari in Apple devices is Google. To enable this, Google pays billions of dollars to the Cupertino firm. According to a recent report by the U.K. Competition and Markets Authority, this investment has created “a significant barrier to entry and expansion” for rival search engines like Bing, Yahoo, and privacy-oriented offerings like DuckDuckGo.

"Given the impact of pre-installations and defaults on mobile devices and Apple’s significant market share, it is our view that Apple’s existing arrangements with Google create a significant barrier to entry and expansion for rivals affecting competition between search engines on mobiles."

The U.K. market regulator was investigating online platforms and digital advertising. The 'arrangements' referred to in the report alluded to the fact that last year, Apple received a “substantial majority” of the cumulative $1.5 billion that Google paid to a variety of companies to become the default search engine on a wide array of devices in the United Kingdom.

Taking a cue from this, the report suggested that either Apple's ability to monetize default search engines should be restricted or users should be given the option to choose the default search engine on their devices. In reply to this, the California tech giant responded by stating that these regulations would be “very costly,” as per the report.

Source: Reuters

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