A group of 37 attorneys general filed a second major multi-state antitrust lawsuit against Google Wednesday, accusing the company of abusing its market power to stifle competitors and forcing consumers intothat grant the company a hefty cut. New York Letitia James co-led the suit alongside the Tennessee, North Carolina, and Utah attorneys general. The bipartisan coalition represents 36 U.S. states, including California, Florida, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Hampshire, Colorado, Washington, and the District of Columbia.
“Through its illegal conduct, the company has ensured that hundreds of millions of small businesses that are only seeking to compete.” In December, 35 , alleging that the company engaged in illegal behavior to maintain a monopoly on the search business. The filed its antitrust case focused on the October search., and only Google, for the millions of applications they may choose to download to their phones and tablets,” James said in a press release. “Worse yet, Google is squeezing the lifeblood out of millions of
In the new lawsuit embedded below, the bipartisan coalition of states alleges that Google uses “misleading” security warnings to keep app developers and consumers into its payment processing system and then charging high fees,” District of Columbia Attorney General Karl Racine said.garden, the Google Play store. But the fees that developers are likely the meat of the case. “Not only has Google acted unlawfully to block potential rivals from competing with its Google Play Store, but it has also profited by improperly locking
Much of the criticism here is a case that could — and likely will — be made against Apple, which exerts even more control over its own app ecosystem. Like Apple,, Google Play Billing, and reaps the rewards: a 30 percent cut of all payments. Google doesn’t have an iMessage equivalent exclusive app that keeps users locked in quite the same way.
While the lawsuit discusses Google’s “monopoly power” in the app marketplace, the elephant in the room issoftware space. The lawsuit argues that consumers face pressure to stay locked into the Android ecosystem, but on the Android side, much of that is ultimately familiarity and sunk costs. The argument on the Apple side of the equation hs likely much more robust.
The din over tech giants squeezingpayment fees is jetting louder. The new multi-state lawsuit is the latest beat, but the topic has been white-hot since Epic took Apple to court over its desire to bypass Apple’s . When Epic set up a workaround, , and Epic Games v. Apple was born.