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Google to Allow Android Users in Europe Choose Default Search Engine

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Google will let Android device users in Europe choose their default search engine from four options, including Google search, the US company said, as it tries to quash EU antitrust concerns and stave off fresh penalties.

New Android smartphones and tablets shipped in the European Economic Area (EEA) will host a ‘choice screen’ displaying four search engines that users can select from, beginning early 2020, Alphabet’s Google said in a blog post.

Search engine providers will be allowed to bid in an auction to win a spot on the users’ screens, along with Google, to become the device’s default search engine on the Android home screen as well as the Chrome browser.

The auctions will be conducted in each EEA country and the three highest bidders for a given country will appear on the ‘choice screen’, the U.S. tech company said.

Google’s move follows the European Commission’s decision last year to fine the tech giant EUR 4.34 billion ($4.81 billion) for blocking rivals on its Android mobile operating system.

The European Commission said Google had an unfair advantage by pre-installing its Chrome browser and Google search app on Android smartphones and notebooks.

Google has since allowed Android users in Europe to choose rival browsers and search engines from five options.

© Thomson Reuters 2019

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Oculus is getting Facebook ads in VR: Here’s what they look like

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Facebook is adding adverts to Oculus Quest, revealing today that it’s testing in-headset ads in a handful of virtual reality titles. It’s an announcement that many predicted would one day happen, after Facebook acquired Oculus in early 2014, though until now the social networking behemoth had seemed content to leave its promotional campaigns to its smartphone and desktop interfaces. No … Continue reading

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Tim Cook slams sideloading law idea: Not in “best interest” of iPhone users

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Apple CEO Tim Cook has spoken out against proposed tech regulation that would leave iPhone owners able to install apps from outside of the App Store, as the Cupertino firm comes under increasing pressure around its vice grip on smartphone software. The proposed law, known as DMA, would force companies with big platforms – like Apple, Amazon, and Google – … Continue reading

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OnePlus and OPPO are merging: Here’s what that means

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OnePlus and OPPO are merging their R&D teams, and bringing the two companies closer together as OnePlus co-founder and CEO confirms that the phone-makers will now “further integrate.” OnePlus will continue to operate as a separate brand, Lau insists, though it’s expected that the new organizational setup will be a shortcut to more cost-effective development. “As many of you know, … Continue reading

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