Google was fined a record amount

Google Hit With $2.7 Billion Fine By European Commission For Giving Itself An 'Illegal' Shopping Service Advantage

The fine, equivalent to about $2.72 billion, is the largest of its kind, and is the latest attack on tech companies doing business in the EU.

They've asked Google to stop the malpractice in the next 90 days or a further fine of 5% on the daily global turnover of their parent Alphabet will be charged as the punishment.

Commenting on the matter, the EU Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said; "Google has come up with many innovative products and services that have made a difference to our lives".

"When the Commission asks why some comparison websites have not done as well as others, we think it should consider the many sites that have grown in this period, including platforms like Amazon and eBay", says Kent Walker, Google's chief lawyer in a blogpost today.

Google has issued a statement saying that they disagree with the findings of the commission. This will affect other cases the Commission might build against the internet giant's various businesses, like Google Images. But the Commission's determination on this, and the way in which it appears to have arrived at its decision, make the chances of an appeal look slim.

However, one of the other original complainants - the British price comparison service Foundem - welcomed the announcement. "Google's illegal practices have allowed Google's comparison shopping service to make significant gains in traffic at the expense of its rivals and to the detriment of European consumers".

Google (GOOGL, Tech30) said in a statement that it tries to show ads in ways that are helpful for buyers and sellers.

The fine centers around Google's comparison shopping service - which has been known by names from Froogle and Google Product Search to Google Shopping - and its prominent display in related search results.

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We have watched Google undermine competition in the United States and overseas. He adds that Google's data shows that users typically prefer links that lead them to the actual products they're searching for, rather than to websites where they have to conduct the search again.

"We find that this abuse has taken place since 2008, but also that it has taken place in every European country where Google Shopping has rolled out.... and that's reflected in the level of the fine", she said. Only further down the page do you see Google's actual search results for pages relevant to your query.

The $2.7 billion fine represents just over 2.5% of Google's revenue past year and Alphabet, Google's owner, had $92.4 billion in cash as of end of March.

"As a result, competitors were much less likely to be clicked on", she said.

In 2016, the European Union advanced its investigation into anticompetitive complaints about Android. and added a new investigation into the potential anti-competitiveness of Google's Ad Sense service.

At her press conference, Vestager insisted her action was "based on facts" rather than any prejudice the European Commission might have against USA tech companies. The company denies the allegations in both cases.

The commission has already concluded, preliminarily, that Google abused its dominant position in those two cases as well.

However, does Amazon go out and sue Google just because its search ads are below Google's own special search box for Google-partnered products?