Articles about Antitrust Investigation

Google had Obama's ear during antitrust probe

Updated According to emails released under the US Freedom of Information Act, Google briefed the White House amid an antitrust investigation into itself, breaking a 40-year precedent of the President's office staying well away from competition issues. Google lobbyist Johanna Shelton and the web giant's antitrust lawyer Matthew Bye met …
Andrew Orlowski, 18 Aug 2016
Google faces antitrust charges in the European Union

So you’d sod off to China to escape the EU, Google? Really?

Analysis Google structures its entire organisation to avoid privacy laws, minimise taxes and de-risk itself from competition oversight*. Today Google’s European supremo hinted that being in China might be less of a hassle, and that losing Google would serve us Europeans right for being so backward. Of course, it’s a sheer coincidence …
Andrew Orlowski, 19 Apr 2016
EU logo on rubber glove

European commish considers probing Android, again

The European Union has taken early steps towards opening an antitrust investigation into the Android operating system. According to Bloomberg, Google's opponents have been asked to prepare redacted versions of their complaints with business secrets removed, so the documents can be shown to Google. The spirits tell Bloomberg …

Lenovo, Qualcomm renew their solemn patent vows

Qualcomm and Lenovo have finished renegotiating their Chinese patent licensing agreement and sent the new document off to the government to be rubber-stamped. The two have had a partnership in China for some years, but Qualcomm had to re-cut its contracts in the Middle Kingdom to comply with a ruling by the country's National …
willy wonka oompa loompa

Google meets more EU apparatchiks than anyone else in Brussels

Google tops the list of companies lobbying in Brussels, according to a report published on Wednesday by Transparency International (TI). TI analysed the 4,318 lobby meetings declared by the top tier of European Commission officials between December 2014 and June 2015 and found the Chocolate Factory came out on top for …
Jennifer Baker, 25 Jun 2015
Amazon under a cloud

Commish snaps on rubber gloves, Amazon readies itself for antitrust probe

The European Commish has decided to prod about in Amazon’s contracts with publishers looking for nasty antitrusty behaviour. The Commission is concerned that the contracts, which force publishers to notify Amazon about more favourable terms and conditions with competitors, may make it more difficult for other ebook …
Jennifer Baker, 11 Jun 2015

Qualcomm profits sink as it hands over nearly a BEEELLION dollars in fines to China

Qualcomm showed encouraging signs of growth in the second quarter of its fiscal 2015, even as a hefty payout to China bit deeply into its bottom line. The mobile chipmaker's revenue for the quarter was $6.89bn, which was down slightly from the previous sequential quarter but up by 8.3 per cent from the year-ago period, beating …
Neil McAllister, 22 Apr 2015

EU says dominant Google ILLEGALLY FIDDLES search results

The EU’s chief competition regulator alleged today that Google is illegally abusing its dominant position in the search market. Antitrust commissioner Margrethe Vestager has now taken the first official step towards fining the ad-slinging search monster. “I am confident that Google has artificially boosted its position in the …
Jennifer Baker, 15 Apr 2015

US Senate to probe the Obama-Google love-in

The US Senate’s subcommittee on antitrust and competition will investigate why President Obama’s political appointees at the top of the FTC closed an investigation into Google. The American watchdog's own staff found sufficient evidence of wrongdoing to merit a prosecution – specifically, evidence of Google abusing its …
Andrew Orlowski, 03 Apr 2015
management regulation1

UK lawsuit against Google delayed by EU antitrust investigation

A lawsuit against Google over alleged search manipulation has been adjourned, after a judge ruled it was "inappropriate" to hold the trial while the European Commission was pursuing its anti-trust case. Court News UK is reporting that a High Court trial "between Infederation, the operator of, and Google, has been …
Apple patent

Sorry, Qualcomm, Apple – your patents don't scare us

Analysis Patent royalties make up a higher proportion of cellular device costs than in most other markets, so the IPR game has been a hard-fought and sometimes vicious one. At the start of 2015, various developments suggest that the playground bullies of the past will lose a lot of their power. Qualcomm is on the defensive in China, …
Wireless Watch, 20 Jan 2015
Can you figure out the mystery company?

Guess which US tech giant was just hit with a $137m tax bill in China?

The Chinese government doesn't want to embarrass whichever US multinational it just slapped with a US$140m bill in back taxes – but let's just say it's large and its name begins with the letter "M." OK, it's Microsoft. But neither China nor the software giant are coming right out and admitting it. According to a story from …
Neil McAllister, 26 Nov 2014

Something will happen in Google 'dominance' probe. Just don't ask me what - EU antitrust chief

Europe’s new Competition chief has vowed that there will be next steps in the antitrust probe into Google's alleged "abuse of dominance" – she just doesn’t know what they are yet. Margrethe Vestager was up in front of the European Parliament in Thursday’s round of Commissioner-designate grilling. In response to a question …
Jennifer Baker, 03 Oct 2014
Sorry we're closed

Adobe axes R&D lab in China, insiders blame mandarins and pirates

Adobe is closing the doors of its research and development facility in China – and some within the biz are reportedly blaming the recalcitrant attitude of the Chinese government for the move. "The overall climate in China against Western enterprises has been quite negative and that's one of the major reasons," the anonymous …
Iain Thomson, 25 Sep 2014
Kung Fu Rider

China rips Apple out of govt IT mail-order catalogue – report

+Comment Apple's most popular products are set to vanish from Chinese officials' boardrooms after the People's Republic reportedly struck them off the official procurement list. Ten gizmos including the iPad, iPad Mini, MacBook Air and MacBook Pro can no longer be purchased for use by the Chinese state bureaucracy, Bloomberg reported …
Jasper Hamill, 06 Aug 2014
Google sign outside Mountain View headquarters

Report: Google back in Europe's crosshairs over web domination claims

Regulators in Europe are about to rewrite a settlement with Google and expand their anti-competition probe into the web giant, it's claimed. The company was already under the microscope for allegedly screwing over its rivals in web search results. The Wall Street Journal cited the proverbial "person with knowledge" in reporting …
Shaun Nichols, 22 Jul 2014

Rubber-glove time: Italy to probe TripAdvisor over 'fake reviews'

Italy’s competition regulator has launched two investigations into holiday websites just ahead of the summer in the wake of complaints from both tourists and industry figures. The antitrust watchdog said it would be looking into TripAdvisor to see if the holiday review and booking site was taking the right steps to ensure that …

Chinese mobe-makers in pincer movement to corner Qualcomm

China’s mobile phone industry has turned up the heat on Qualcomm after submitting a damning report to government regulators in an on-going antitrust investigation into the US chip giant. China’s Communications Industry Association, consulted 20 out of its 30 key member companies before submitting its findings to the National …
Phil Muncaster, 11 Feb 2014

MEP: Google's SECRET deal will cause crisis of trust for Europe

Google's secret backroom deal with the EU's competition chief can only worsen the crisis of trust in the European institutions, one MEP tells us. This week the Competition Commissioner Joaquín Almunia said he would advise the Commission to reject complaints made about Google's business practices, thus allowing the search giant …
Andrew Orlowski, 07 Feb 2014

Microsoft-backed lobby group demands market test of Google's proposed 'search fix'

A Microsoft-backed lobby group is urging Brussels' competition chief Joaquin Almunia to open up Google's latest revised offer of a conciliatory package of tweaks to its search biz to the ad giant's rivals. Earlier this week, it was reported that the European Commission was closing in on a settlement deal with Google that would …
Kelly Fiveash, 31 Jan 2014

Google WILL wriggle away from Euro probe... but THEN what?

Analysis Google seems on course to win an remarkable victory over competition regulators in Europe. The deal could potentially seal in Google's dominance over the search business for five years, forbidding further prohibitive action against it - and setting a high barrier for potential startup competitors across a range of sectors. …
Andrew Orlowski, 19 Nov 2013

Google rivals GAGGED from exposing ad giant's EU search peace offering

How exactly Google will overhaul its web-search engine in Europe is unlikely to be aired in public: the European Commission's competition officials have sent out copies of the advertising giant's package of concessions to its rivals for comment – along with a requirement for them to agree to confidentiality clauses. Despite …
Kelly Fiveash, 28 Oct 2013
big red wheelie bin and pallet full of rubbish in London street

Amazon: OK, OK. We'll let traders flog tat more cheaply elsewhere

Amazon has agreed to stop forcing third-party traders to offer their cheapest prices on its online marketplace within the EU, Blighty's Office of Fair Trading has announced. The online bazaar had been banning traders from selling their products at a cheaper price elsewhere using threats of Amazon account suspension and payment …
The Register breaking news

Google preps for Brussels wrist-slap

Reports are emerging that European regulators have won a small victory over Google in their dispute about the impartiality or otherwise of the Chocolate Factory's search results. According to the New York Times, the antitrust investigation will end in the next couple of days with the European Commission accepting a settlement …
The Register breaking news

Microsoft leads charge against Google's Android in EU antitrust complaint

Microsoft and Nokia have added Google's Android operating system to their list of antitrust grievances against the ad giant, and have filed a formal complaint with European regulators. According to analysts, Android is currently the dominant smartphone operating system and Google also takes the biggest slice of mobile search …
The Register breaking news

South Korea probes 'mobe patent bully-boy' Samsung

South Korea's Fair Trade Commission is investigating whether Samsung abused its position as a wireless patent hoarder following a complaint by Apple. The competition watchdog will assess whether Sammy used its patents, which cover technology deemed essential for meeting telecommunications standards, to bully mobile-phone …
The Register breaking news

EU edges toward dropping Google 'abuse of dominance' charges

Europe's antitrust watchdog has said Google's revised proposed changes to its business practises, which came in the wake of "abuse of dominance" allegations, may be enough for the web giant to avoid formal penalties. European Commissioner for Competition Joaquin Almunia has "considered that the outline of proposals that Google …
Kelly Fiveash, 25 Jul 2012
The Register breaking news

Google expected to cough measly $22.5m for Safari privacy gaffe

Google is reportedly set to cough up a piddly penalty payment of $22.5m to the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to settle its sneaky bypassing of the default privacy settings of Apple's Safari browser. It was revealed by the Wall Street Journal in February this year that Google, Vibrant Media Inc, WPP PLC's Media Innovation …
Kelly Fiveash, 10 Jul 2012
The Register breaking news

Google makes Opera bloggers an offer they can't refuse: Use Chrome

Google is warning Opera web browser users they must switch to Chrome in order to use, the search giant's blog-hosting service. No technical incompatibilities have been found to justify the alarm. After a reader tip-off, El Reg created a Google blog using Opera 12.0 for Mac this morning, and received this message: …
Andrew Orlowski, 05 Jul 2012
The Register breaking news

Texas sues Google for 'withholding' documents from antitrust probe

Google is being sued by the Texas Attorney General's office in the US, because - it has been alleged - the search giant "withheld" documents from a competition investigation of the company. Texas AG Greg Abbott said in a state court filing that a "large volume" of paperwork had been sat on by Google, which claimed attorney- …
Kelly Fiveash, 22 Jun 2012
The Register breaking news

Brussels throws antitrust settlement lifeline to Google

Google has been given the chance to settle an antitrust investigation of the company's business practices in Europe, competition officials in Brussels confirmed today. The EU's competition commissioner Joaquin Almunia said this morning that he would consider "proposals of remedies" from the internet giant if it quickly …
Kelly Fiveash, 21 May 2012
The Register breaking news

Now India snaps on gloves, bends Google over for antitrust probe

Google is undergoing an antitrust investigation in India, the Competition Commission (CCI) in that country confirmed on Monday. The Economic Times, citing sources, reported over the weekend that the CCI was readying a competition inquiry into the search giant's "alleged discriminatory practices" relating to its AdWords …
Kelly Fiveash, 08 May 2012
The Register breaking news

Motorola Mobility in double Euro probe over patent warfare

The European Commission's anti-competition division has opened two formal investigations into Motorola Mobility after complaints from Apple and Microsoft about how it uses its patents against them. The commission said in a canned statement that it wants to figure out if Motorola Mobility has "abusively, and in contravention of …
The Register breaking news

EU snaps on glove, starts formal antitrust probe of Samsung

The European Union has formally started an antitrust investigation of Samsung over its use of standards-related 3G patents in its patent battles around the world. The Korean firm has brought lawsuits against Apple in a number of European countries, alleging patent infringement of 3G intellectual property it holds. However, 3G …
The Register breaking news

Google needs a very thorough frisking, say antitrust senators

The Federal Trade Commission has been urged by two concerned US lawmakers to investigate Google's search business practices more thoroughly. Senator Mike Lee and Senator Herb Kohl, who both sit on the upper house's judiciary antitrust subcommittee, wrote (PDF) to the FTC's chairman Jonathan Leibowitz on Monday. "Google is …
Kelly Fiveash, 20 Dec 2011
The Register breaking news

Brussels' statement of objections against Google is MEATY

Google will be hit with a statement of objections document from the antitrust wing of the European Commission that is reportedly more than 400 pages in length. According to the Financial Times, that tome – detailing complaints from a variety of outfits that allege Google abused its dominant position in the search engine market …
Kelly Fiveash, 02 Dec 2011
The Register breaking news

Euro banks unhappy with proposed e-payment rules

The European Payment Council has taken issue with a number of the European Commission's proposals to try to make direct debits and credit transfers across the continent easier and cheaper. The council, which is a group of European banks and financial institutions helping to standardise e-payments, is unhappy with the changes …
The Register breaking news

Googorola deal stalled by Feds

The US Department of Justice has asked for more time to consider Google's $12.5bn acquisition of Motorola Mobility, putting paid to any hopes of closing out the deal before the end of the year. Most of Google's acquisitions are scrutinised very closely because of the Chocolate Factory's sprawling empire across the net and its …
The Register breaking news

Antitrust nemesis accuses Google of 'WMD program'

Foundem – the UK-based vertical search engine that sparked antitrust investigations into Google on both sides of the Atlantic – has accused the web giant of demoting vertical search competitors with the latest major update to its famous search algorithms, an update officially aimed at reducing "webspam". In a document (PDF) …
Cade Metz, 01 Sep 2011
The Register breaking news

Google trebles its force of lobbyists ahead of FTC probe

Google now has 18 lobbying firms on its books, after it hired 12 more companies late last week to help fight a recent antitrust investigation kicked off by the US Federal Trade Commission. A Mountain View spokeswoman told Reuters on Friday that it had "a strong story to tell about our business" and said Google had "sought the …
Kelly Fiveash, 04 Jul 2011
The Register breaking news

French search engine seeks multi-million euro damages from Google

A French search engine is demanding damages of €295m from Google, in a legal spat over Mountain View's dominance of the market. 1plusV, a local rival to Google in France, alleged that Mountain View's command of the search engine biz had blocked the development of services offered by competitors in the country. The French …
Kelly Fiveash, 28 Jun 2011
The Register breaking news

Google confirms US antitrust probe

Google has confirmed that the US Federal Trade Commission has opened an antitrust investigation into its search and advertising practices, and although the company says it respects "the FTC's process", it continues to insist that those search and ad practices will stand up to scrutiny. With an SEC filing, the company said it …
Cade Metz, 26 Jun 2011
The Register breaking news

Google to be hit by US anti-trust probe - report

The US Federal Trade Commission is on the verge of serving Google with civil subpoenas as part of a "wide-ranging" antitrust investigation into the company's search and ad practices, according to a report citing people familiar with the matter. The Wall Street Journal reports that a five member FTC panel intends to send the …
Cade Metz, 23 Jun 2011
The Register breaking news

Sergey Brin mum on $500m DoJ settlement stash

Google I/O Google has set aside $500 million to prepare for a possible settlement with the US Department of Justice, according to an SEC filing. But Sergey Brin says he knows nothing about it. Google cofounder Sergey Brin was asked about the filing today at the company's annual developer conference, but he declined to comment, saying that …
Cade Metz, 11 May 2011
The Register breaking news

Google settles with DoJ over flight data buy

Google has reached an agreement with the US Department of Justice that would allow it to complete its $700m acquisition of flight data outfit ITA Software. Under the agreement, Google must continue to develop ITA's QPX travel software and license it to third-party websites under "commercially reasonable terms", while erecting " …
Cade Metz, 08 Apr 2011
The Register breaking news

Google may face 'broad US antitrust probe'

The US Federal Trade commission is considering a broad antitrust investigation of Google's search business, according to a report citing two people familiar with the matter. Bloomberg reports that before launching a probe, the FTC is waiting to see if the Department of Justice will challenge Google's proposed acquisition of …
Cade Metz, 05 Apr 2011
The Register breaking news

Why US antitrust regulators should probe Google search

Comment The word is that the US Department of Justice may sue Google over its proposed $700m acquisition of flight data outfit ITA Software. And we can only hope that the feds have far more than flight data on the brain. As it investigates whether Google could use its web search monopoly to erect a second monopoly in the flight search …
Cade Metz, 25 Mar 2011
The Register breaking news

Google faces possible antitrust probes in two other states

Google is facing a possible antitrust probe in the state of Ohio, and according to a report citing a person familiar with the matter, Wisconsin is weighing a Google antitrust probe of its own. On Thursday, Bloomberg reported that both states were considering investigations of the web giant. Speaking with The Register, Dan …
Cade Metz, 24 Mar 2011
The Register breaking news

Texas antitrust investigators request Google 'ad rate formula'

Texas antitrust investigators have asked Google to turn over its formula for setting advertising rates and documents that show "manual overriding or altering of” its search rankings, according to a report citing a letter from the Texas attorney general's office. Bloomberg reports that Kim Van Winkle, an assistant attorney …
Cade Metz, 16 Feb 2011
The Register breaking news

Google, antitrust, and the 'Copygate' hypocrisy

Comment Google built a multi-billion-dollar advertising empire atop a service that does little more than copy information from other sources. And yet it chastises others when they do the copying. It's an irony that could land the company in some very hot water. Google made (countless) headlines last week when, after an intricate "sting …
Cade Metz, 09 Feb 2011