The European Union has issued a Statement of Objections, alleging that Google’s search results are anti-competitive.
The competition commissioner, Margrethe Vestager, said that Google’s promotion of its own links was an abuse of its dominance in the search market.
"I'm concerned that Google has artificially boosted its presence in the comparison shopping market with the result that consumers may not necessarily see what's most relevant for them, or that competitors may not get the the commercial opportunity that their innovative services deserve," Vestager said in a press conference.
The commissioner also said that she was launching into investigation into Android and Google’s bundled apps.
Google now has ten weeks to respond to the allegations, but if found to be in breach of EU regulations, could face hefty fines and be forced to restructure its business model in Europe.
Google was quick to address the allegations, laying out an argument which claimed that users had more choice than ever before.
“Any economist would say that you typically do not see a ton of innovation, new entrants or investment in sectors where competition is stagnating - or dominated by one player,” said Amit Singhal, senior vice president, Google Search. “Yet that is exactly what’s happening in our world.”
“It’s why we respectfully but strongly disagree with the need to issue a Statement of Objections and look forward to making our case over the weeks ahead.”