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Italy launches anti-competition probe against Google

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San Francisco, May 18 (IANS) Joining the Competition Commission of India (CCI) and the European Union (EU), Italy’s antitrust authority has become the latest international regulatory body to launch an anti-competition investigation against Google.

The probe was prompted after Italy-based energy company Enel Group complained that Google was not allowing the "Enel X Recharge" app to work with Android Auto — Google’s smart driving companion, The Verge reported on Friday.

Usually, the search engine giant allows third-party developers to develop Android Auto-compatible versions of their apps, but only if they offer media or messaging services.

Since "Enel X Recharge" is intended to help drivers find charging stations for electric cars, the app does not necessarily require a messaging feature.

"Android Auto is designed with safety in mind, to minimise distractions and to ensure apps can be used safely when driving. We are reviewing the complaint and we look forward to working with the authority to resolve their concerns," the repost quoted a Google spokesperson as saying.

In India, earlier in May, the CCI ordered a probe into Google for alleged abuse of its popular Android OS to block rivals.

The EU’s antitrust regulators in March fined Google 1.49 billion euros ($1.7 billion) for abusing its dominance in the online search market by blocking rivals.

 

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