Google asked Android users to choose the preferred browsers, eliminating the EU

FILE PHOTO: 3D-printed Android mascot, Bugdroid is to see it in front of a Google logo, in this picture, 9 July 2017. REUTERS/dado Ruvic/Illustration

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Alphabet Google asks Android users to choose their favorite browsers and search apps, a senior Google executive said on Tuesday, as the company focuses on the removal of the EU’s antitrust concerns and fend off fresh sanctions.

The European Commission last year gave Google a record 4.34 billion euros ($4.9 billion fine for the use of the power on the market of the mobile software to block rivals in areas such as surfing on the internet.

By pre-installing the Chrome browser and Google search app on Android devices, Google had an unfair advantage over his rivals, the EU-enforcers said.

Google will now try to ensure that Android users are aware of browsers and search engines, other than its own services, Kent Walker, senior vice-president of global affairs, said in a blog.

“In the coming months, through the Play Store, we begin with the question of the users of existing and new Android devices in Europe, what browser and find apps they want to use,” he wrote, without providing details.

The firm, which is a license-fee for the device makers to get access to the app marketplace, after the EU sanction, is not going to be the cargo of scrap iron.

Google may be fined up to 5 percent of the Alphabet in the average daily turnover if it fails to comply with the EU to stop anti-competitive practices.

Reporting by Foo Yun Chee; Editing by David Goodman

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