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Google search engine deal with Apple targeted in CMA report

The regulator said Google’s position as the default search engine across most mobile devices limited the ability of rivals to access consumers, adding that it may also disincentivise the tech giant from improving its own services

Alphabet Inc - Google search engine deal with Apple targeted in CMA report

A deal between Alphabet Inc’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) Google and Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) for the search engine to be the default on the iPhone makers Safari web browser creates “significant barriers to entry and expansion” for competitors, according to the UK’s competition watchdog.

In a report released on Wednesday, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) said Google’s position as the default search engine across most mobile devices limited the ability of rival providers to access consumers, build scale and grow over time, adding that it may also disincentivise the tech giant from improving its own services.

READ: Google and Facebook under fire as CMA calls for new rules to break tech monopolies

The report also highlighted that Apple received “the substantial majority” of the £1.2bn spent by Google to secure its position as the default search engine among mobile phone manufacturers, adding that rivals had highlighted these payments as “one of the most significant factors inhibiting competition in the search market”.

Both Apple and Google also came under pressure from the CMA yesterday after the watchdog put out a press release calling for new laws to help break the monopoly power of the tech giants, saying the existing rules were “not suitable to effective regulation” and a new “pro-competition regulatory regime” was needed to govern the platforms.

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