The Google Android Decision - MADAs, AFAs and ties?
23 October 2018

19.00h (by teleconference / in-person)(CET) - 20.30h (cocktail to 9pm)

Nicholas Banasevic, Head of Unit
Antitrust - IT, Internet, Consumer Electronics
European Commission
By teleconference
In-person: Renaissance Brussels Hotel
Rue du Parnasse, 19
1050, Brussels
CPD:Accredited for 1.5 hours CPD (UK SRA)
Registrations:Close - 3pm (CET) 23.10.18
Joining:Details sent to registered participants at 4.30pm 23 October
On 18 July, the European Commission fined Google and Alphabet Inc. €4.34 billion for breaching EU antitrust rules for imposing illegal restrictions on Android device manufacturers and mobile network operators.

According to the Commission, between 2011 and 2018 and as part of a single and continuous infringement, Google committed three separate categories of illegal abuses (one ended in 2014) all of which related back to reinforcing its dominant position in general internet search:

  • Tying of Google's Search app and Chrome browser with Play Store and tying of Chrome browser with Google Search?
  • Payments to OEMs and large mobile network operators conditional on exclusive pre-installation of Google Search; and
  • Obstructing the development and distribution of alternative Android operating systems.
Since the Decision, much of the focus in EU antitrust circles has been on the alleged tying abuses and the contractual requirements creating so-called pre-installation status quo bias.

Google is required to end these abuses in an effective manner within 90 days of the Decision.

Concerns about “lock-in” are unlikely to abate anytime soon. They are also an aspect of the Special Advisers’ report on the future challenges of digitisation for competition policy to be delivered to DG COMP next year.

Join Nicholas Banasevic in the first Europe-wide, 'Chatham House' rule discussion following the Android Decision and decide for yourself if this is a “traditional” case of tying delimited by the facts or a novel foothold for similar antitrust enforcement in the future?

List of participants (updated 23 October)

Google Android Decision press release (18.07.18)

Commissioner Vestager’s statement (18.07.18)

'Android has created more choice, not less', S. Pichai blog post (18.07.18)

'Getting the most out of technology', M. Vestager, CEPS, Brussels (10.09.18)

'Shaping competition policy in the era of digitisation' Call for contributions (17.07.18)

'Google Search (Shopping)' N. Banasevic, Brussels Matters (08.02.18)
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The discussion will last a maximum of 90 minutes. All participants will receive the speaker's presentation and will be able to ask questions.

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