IT&Software

Google to Charge for Apps on Android Phones in Europe

Google to Charge for Apps on Android Phones in Europe

As before, competing apps may be pre-installed alongside ours.

Google is preparing for a major shift to its business model in response to a record-breaking European Union fine this summer over the rules that Google binds Android handset makers to if they want access to the OS - rules that include requiring those handset manufacturers to set Google's own search and web browsers as the default offerings. Since they will stop bundling these apps with Android, the company will start charging a licensing fee to make up for it.

Until now, Google has only allowed phone vendors to ship the Play Store app with their phones only if they abide by strict rules.

In fact, we suspect many phone makers will cough up for the fee and stick with Google's suite of services as they are now something people expect as a standard for Android, given how well all of Google's services integrate on more modern Android versions.

Automakers relieved, dairy farmers angry in wake of NAFTA replacement deal
Canada is by far the No. 1 destination for US exports, and the USA market accounts for 75 percent of what Canada sells overseas . He says this latest agreement goes into more detail on environmental issues than the original pact signed almost 25 years ago.


"Device manufacturers will be able to license the Google mobile application suite separately from the Google Search App or the Chrome browser", said Hiroshi Lockheimer, senior vice president of platform and ecosystems at Google.

The Commission's ruling described Google's licensing terms for its search and browser apps with the Android operating system as "two instances of illegal tying", beginning from 2011 and 2012 respectively. Alphabet, Google's parent company, makes nearly 90 percent of its $100 billion in annual sales from search and advertising. The blog post did not specify which Google software it would sell when the licensing program takes effect on October 29. Going forward, Android partners wishing to distribute Google apps may also build non-compatible, or forked, smartphones and tablets for the European Economic Area (EEA).

The company said the licensing fees will offset revenue lost as a result of its compliance efforts. Device-makers are yet to comment on the changes, though the fear will undoubtedly be that licensing fees - the costs of which have not been disclosed at this stage - will be passed through to buyers themselves.

"We have confirmed to the European Commission how we will comply with its recent decision on Android", said Al Verney, a spokesperson for Google in Brussels. But European regulators successfully argued that Google's practices gave it an unfair advantage against competitors. In exchange, the hardware companies no longer have to install Google search and the Google Chrome browser, though they can do so for free if they want to.


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