Google’s Greatest Opponents in the EU Are American-based Companies

November 27, 2014 - Written By Phil Bourget

Google has faced many struggles thus far, as both a Search and mobile OS giant. The issues have been many, and both domestic and foreign. The Search and Android company has had issues with allowing people to be forgotten through the Internet, as well as pushing its own services too much in comparison to competitors.  Though they’ve faced trouble in many countries, they have also made peace with other giants in the technology market within the last year, like Samsung and even Apple. With all the international trouble that has been brewing, specifically with unequal search results and service offerings. People might not know exactly where these claims and problems are coming from past ‘oh, it’s the European Union’. You might be surprised to know where and how these claims and allegations are coming from, actually.

Many, or a significant amount anyway, are coming from the United States.  No, it’s not people from the U.S. claiming these things in a European environment, but it’s something like that. Microsoft is based out of Redmond,Washington. Expedia is based out of Bellevue, Washington. TripAdvisor is based out of Newton, Massachusetts.  These are some of the big names that are bringing up more and more issues in Google’s uphill battle across the Atlantic pond.

The main reasons for the troubles that Google has been handling are unfairness in competition facetime and purposeful prevalence of its own services. As well as the issues with ‘default apps’ in Android, but that’s another issue. In Google’s search results, people claim that Google services and sites like Zagat, Maps, Google+, among the many, are given priority over competing sites with the same services. The company has also been known to use other site’s information (like restaurant reviews, for instance) and include in their own sites, like Maps. For the convenience as well as click- and time-saving.

Google has also faced opposition in the seeming force-feeding of its own apps on the Android platform on devices that aren’t Nexus (since Nexus devices are intended to explicitly highlight and use Google services). Instead of directly offering options for things like Internet browsing, navigation and news reading. The companies that are too small to fight-off Google’s seeming takeover of the Internet, both desktop and mobile, are of great concern to the EU. Antitrust legislation allows for the continued competition of companies and continued option availability for consumers. Knowing that some of the perpetuating companies are American, we have a new look for the legal warfare on Google.

The legal fight against Google by the EU is fueled by Google’s American competition, as well as their dollars. Small companies have much to gain if Google backs off on its presence, but the larger companies have even more to gain. Microsoft has Internet Explorer to foster, as well as Bing to market, even though they have their own mobile OS. Expedia and TripAdvisor have much to gain from Google Maps being more limited in what it can show and use, specifically if it’s not Google’s information. Many people looking to travel or eat out often use Maps to find nearby places and use the reviews listed to get a star rating. As well as written reviews, often from Zagat (another of Google’s sectors) but also from places like UrbanSpoon, TripAdvisor and Expedia. Although the latter two are usually skipped in favor of Maps when looking at non-culinary options.

American companies have expanded the Google offensive to Europe, even though the legislation would have developed eventually anyway. But, it’s disturbing to see how the influence of companies that simply are present, rather than being headquartered, in another country, let alone continent can still be so large and far-reaching. Google, we wish you the best of luck in these troubling times, since competitors will always follow where success is present. Do you think that Google will come out of the EU legal kerfuffle with its dignity and reputation intact? Or will this smear its name internationally enough to impact its success?  Is it wrong to have a system of services that streamline and unify a searching or information-hunting experience?  Which area could Google afford to back off in its presence of, do you think? Especially knowing that they exist on computers as well as mobile devices that go everywhere with us nowadays?  Let us know down below.