Google’s mobile search dominance under threat in Australia

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Google should be forced to give up its position as the default search engine on mobile phones and tablets under proposals from Australia’s antitrust watchdog to rein in the tech giant’s power.

The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission on Thursday recommended a mandatory choice screen, offering alternative search engine providers, be displayed on current and new mobile devices that run Google’s Android operating system. The watchdog is also considering extending the change to Apple Inc.’s iPhones and desktop devices.

The ACCC said it may demand that users also be offered a choice of internet browsers.

The plan follows a similar arrangement in Europe, where Google has set up a choice screen on Android devices to let users pick search engines run by smaller rivals. Still, the company’s integration of Google search into Android goes beyond basic text input — it’s part of the voice-activated Google Assistant and several other structural…

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