DuckDuckGo, rivals want EU’s Vestager to set up Google meeting

In this news, we discuss the DuckDuckGo, rivals want EU’s Vestager to set up Google meeting.

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – US search engine DuckDuckGo and four of its European peers on Tuesday asked EU antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager to set up a meeting with Google to resolve the issues related to the continued dominance of the Alphabet unit on Android devices.

Last year, Google allowed its competitors to become the default search engines on new Android devices in Europe via quarterly auctions after Vestager fined 4.34 billion euros (5.1 billion euros). dollars) to the company for locking up rivals on Android smartphones and laptops.

Competitors, however, criticized the auctions and in an open letter to Vestager, DuckDuckGo, French Qwant and Lilo, Germany Ecosia and Czech peer Seznam reiterated their grievances over Google auctions.

“We understand that Google updates you regularly regarding its paid auctions, but it looks like you may not be receiving complete or correct information,” they said.

“We are writing to request a trilateral meeting with your office, ourselves and Google, with the goal of establishing an effective preferences menu,” the letter added, referring to how Android users define their preferred search engine.

Microsoft’s Bing, Puerto Rico-based PrivacyWall, and US-based were the main winners in its recent quarterly auction, Google said in September. As in any auction, bidders offer payment for access, but the amount they pay has not been disclosed.

Google said the auctions are meant to give all search providers an equal chance to bid, not to give special treatment to certain competitors.

DuckDuckGo, which won the September auction in eight countries, criticized the process at the time, saying it was encouraging bidders to exploit users.

“Google’s auction makes search engines even worse when it comes to privacy, increase ads and not donate to good causes because, if they do these things, they could afford to bid higher, “DuckDuckGo said in a blog post.

Reporting by Foo Yun Chee; Edited by David Holmes

Original © Thomson Reuters Corporation

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