WASHINGTON, Oct 30 (Reuters) – Sundar Pichai, CEO of Alphabet Inc (GOOGL.O) and its Google affiliate, testified on Monday in a once-in-a-generation antitrust battle with the U.S. government in which the company sought to overuse browser and search usage. Online is easy and safe.
Pichai testified under oath at a trial to determine whether Google acted illegally to maintain its dominance over search and portions of search advertising. If the government wins, the company may be forced to undo some of the business practices that helped it stay at the top.
In his testimony Monday morning, Pichai performed several swipes on Microsoft’s browser, Internet Explorer.
Before Google launched its Chrome browser, which competed with Microsoft’s product, Pichai said: “The browser market at that time was somewhat stagnant.
“They (Microsoft) were not enthusiastic about improving the browser,” he added, describing Chrome as a “very big improvement” when it was launched in 2008.
He also said that Google has made it easy to change the Chrome browser if the user wants to use a search engine other than Google.
Pichai, who was called as a witness for Google, will likely be asked about the company’s investments aimed at keeping its Internet search engine dominant, especially with smartphones taking over and innovation in search advertising.
The government will also likely ask, in questioning, about the billions of dollars paid annually to smartphone makers like Apple (AAPL.O) and wireless carriers like AT&T (TN) to be the default search on their devices to survive. On top.
Influence in search makes Google a strong player in the lucrative advertising market, its largest source of revenue.
Google said the revenue-sharing agreements are legal and that it has invested heavily to keep its search and advertising business competitive. He has also argued that if people are dissatisfied with their default search engines, they can and do switch to another search provider.
(Reporting by Diane Bartz and Chris Sanders; Preparing by Muhammad for the Arabic Bulletin) Editing by Marguerita Choy and Jonathan Oatis
Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
“Beer aficionado. Gamer. Alcohol fanatic. Evil food trailblazer. Avid bacon maven.”