Supervisor Elham AbolFateh
Editor in Chief Mohamed Wadie

S. Korea Fines Google $168 Mln Over Android Practices

Fri 26 Jan 2024 | 01:53 PM
Israa Farhan

A court in Seoul, South Korea, ruled on Wednesday to uphold the fine imposed by the Fair Trade Commission on the American tech giant, Google.

The fine amounts to 224.93 billion Korean won, equivalent to $168.17 million, for allegedly forcing smartphone manufacturers to install its Android operating system.

In 2021, the Korean Fair-Trade Commission imposed this substantial fine on Google, Google Asia Pacific, and Google Korea, accusing the company of compelling smartphone manufacturers, including Samsung, to pre-install the Android system on their mobile devices.

The commission stated that Google required smartphone manufacturers to comply with anti-fragmentation agreements as part of Android licensing deals, preventing them from selling devices with operating systems derived from Android, as reported by the Korea Times.

Google had appealed to overturn the fine, but the Supreme Court in Seoul upheld the decision of the Fair Trade Commission. 

The court highlighted that the American company had abused its market power and attempted to stifle competition by excluding other companies.

In its ruling, the court pointed out that Google's monopolistic practices had created problems for Korean companies like Samsung and LG.

These practices hindered these companies in marketing and developing their products and stifled innovation.