Google is one of the most popular search engines in the world, and although there is a plethora of search engine alternatives, some countries believe that Google has a monopoly on the search engine market, specifically on mobile devices.
A competition watchdog in Russia opened a case today against Google after Russian search engine company Yandex filed an antitrust complaint earlier this week. Yandex wants regulators to specifically look at the Android operating system, which has an 86 percent majority on Russian smartphones, and determine how Google packages its services on the system. Yandex believes that Google is abusing its market majority, as Google search is the default search engine on Android, and that makes it more difficult for companies like Yandex to promote their product.
Outside of Google, Yandex is the most popular search engine in Russia with a 60 percent market share, but on Android, Yandex drops down to only 44 percent market share. Despite Yandex's 16 percent drop on mobile devices, Google claims that it isn't pushing competitors out of Android, stating that the user always has "complete control" in terms of which apps are on their devices.
Yandex's complaint is just the latest of many antitrust complaints made against Google. The biggest complaint resurfaced last year when the European Commission reopened its antitrust investigation into Google's search and advertising businesses. The group also discussed the plan of a separate investigation solely focused on the Android operating system. The commission's investigation started in 2010 when it discovered that Google had 95 percent of the search market for the entire continent.
It's unknown as to how long the investigation will continue for Yandex and the European Commission, but both groups believe that European-based companies should have a fair chance in the online and mobile game. Android can still dominate on smartphones, but companies like Yandex want Google to give consumers choices when it comes to app services and not just place its apps as the default option.