Google Wins New Victory In Anti-Trust Case

( On Wednesday, an Indian appeals tribunal gave a partial victory to Google by setting aside four of the ten antitrust directives from the Competition Commission of India (CCI), Reuters reported.

In October, the CCI fined Google $161 million after deciding that the company did exploit its dominant market position in its Android operating system. It ordered Google to remove its restrictions on Android device makers, including on the pre-installation of apps. The CCI issued ten antitrust directives to remedy Google’s anti-competitive practices.

On Wednesday, an appeals tribunal said while the CCI’s findings were correct and Google must pay the fine, four of the antitrust remedies imposed on Google to change its business practices would be set aside.

The appeals tribunal’s decision is a partial victory for Google after January’s decision by India’s Supreme Court refusing to suspend any of the CCI’s antitrust directives. The Supreme Court instead asked the appeals tribunal to hear the case and rule before the end of March.

After the Indian Supreme Court’s decision, Google made significant changes to Android in the country, including permitting device makers to license apps for pre-installation and allowing users the option to choose their default search engine. These were two of the six directives that were not set aside by the appeals tribunal on Wednesday.

Among the four directives quashed by the tribunal was the requirement for Google to allow the hosting of third-party app stores inside its Google Play Store.

The tribunal also set aside the CCI directive for Google to all users to remove pre-installed apps like Gmail, YouTube, and Google Maps.

Additionally, the tribunal will allow Google to continue imposing curbs on the practice of downloading apps without using an app store, which is known as “sideloading.”

According to Reuters, it is not clear if Google plans to challenge the six directives the appeals tribunal kept in place. The company said in a statement that it was “reviewing the order” and will evaluate its “legal options.”

Around 97 percent of India’s 600 million smartphones run on Android.