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Google opposes Epic Games’ proposed play store changes in antitrust clash

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Google opposes Epic Games in antitrust clash

Google has formally opposed Epic Games’ proposed sweeping changes to its Play app store, arguing that they would hinder competition and harm user experience.

In a late Thursday filing in San Francisco federal court, Google pushed back against Epic Games’ efforts to implement significant alterations to its Alphabet-owned app store, Play.

The clash stems from Epic’s successful bid last year, convincing a jury that Google had unlawfully stifled competition through its stringent controls over app downloads and in-app transaction payments on Android devices.

Google asserted that Epic’s proposed changes would severely handicap its ability to compete in the market.

Epic, in March, petitioned U.S. District Judge James Donato to compel Google to facilitate easier app downloads from alternative sources and grant developers more freedom in pricing and offering purchases. Additionally, Epic sought unhindered access to introduce its Epic Games Store to Android.

A hearing to deliberate on the proposed injunction is scheduled for May 23. Epic Games refrained from immediate comment on Google’s filing.

Wilson White, Google’s head of government affairs and public policy, criticized Epic’s demands, highlighting potential adverse impacts on consumer privacy, security, and overall user experience.

Google emphasized that a recent Play Store settlement with states and consumers obviated the necessity for Epic’s injunction bid.

According to Google, the remedies outlined in the settlement adequately addressed the alleged anticompetitive behaviour cited by Epic during the trial.

In December, Google reached a $700 million agreement to settle a case brought by states, promising reforms such as allowing more alternative billing options for in-app purchases.

Simultaneously, Google faced a pivotal moment in another high-profile antitrust trial in a Washington, D.C. courtroom. There, the tech giant squared off against the Justice Department and a consortium of states, contesting allegations of monopolistic practices in the mobile web search market.

Lawrence is a dynamic digital journalist known for his expertise in creating SEO-focused content that drives business success. Alongside his journalism career, he also serves as an AI tutor, leveraging his knowledge to educate and empower others in the field. Lawrence graduated from Moshood Abiola Polytechnic with an HND in Mass Communication and has had his work referenced in Wikipedia and various online media outlets.

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