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In 2020 you can choose the default search engine on Android, but candidates will have to bid to opt to be in that menu

Almost a decade ago Microsoft was forced to introduce users to the 'ballot screen' to choose their default browser when installing Windows. Now those same measures to avoid monopoly cases will apply to Android: Google allows you to choose which search engine you want to use when you launch your device for the first time, but also offer that screen of choice in your Chrome browser if you install it.

That will happen in early 2020 after the pressures of the European Union, but it will do so with a singular detail: the companies that want to be part of that group of options they will have to bid at an auction to appear in it: Only the three who bid most will be able to be on that highlighted screen next to the Google search engine.

Complying with the decision with policy included

Google's decision does not come because: the fine of 4,390 million euros imposed by the EU for abuse of dominant position has emerged and the company has reacted trying to avoid future problems and antitrust investigations.

Ballot Do you remember this window that appeared when installing Windows for the first time? Now appear something similar when you first turn on an Android device or after installing Chrome and launch it on a PC or laptop, for example.

The system devised by Google to choose the suppliers that will appear on that screen with search engines could however generate a new policy. The auction will operate independently in each country so that suppliers who wish to bid from a minimum amount not specified.

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Some providers such as Qwant have already complained that this measure is "a total abuse of dominant position" to "ask for money simply by showing a list of alternatives".

Probably that vision be shared by other providers, although at the moment there are no comments from those responsible for Microsoft Bing, Yahoo or DuckDuckGo, to name a few of the best known.

From there the three biggest bids will appear in the search engine selection menu in random order next to that of Google, which explains that this system "allows search providers to decide what value they think that option has to appear on the screen of choice and bid accordingly."

That initial decision may be modified at any time later as it is now: if a user wants to change their search provider in the mobile or in the Chrome browser -or in any other- they can do it from the options of these programs.

The auction will end on September 13, 2019 and the result on which those bids have won will not be confirmed until October 31, 2019. From there we will begin to see that search engine selection screen in both Android and Chrome – when we use them for the first time on our mobile devices, PCs and laptops- in early 2020, on an even date to be determined.

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Themes

  • Mobile
  • Legislation and Rights