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Google starts rolling out Android choice of browser, search engine

Google starts rolling out Android choice of browser, search engine

Where a user downloads a search app from the screen, Google will also ask users whether they want to change Chrome's default search engine the next time they open Chrome. According to Google, apps not installed on a device will be included based on their popularity and will be shown to users in random order.

These screens, as seen above, will start rolling out to existing and new Android devices in Europe over the coming weeks.

If a user does choose to download any new search apps or browsers, Google will then help the user set them up.

In July 2018 for example Google was slapped with the world's highest ever antitrust penalty when the European Union ordered it pay 4.3 billion euros (£3.8bn) for commercial practices related to its Android mobile operating system. "With Android holding 85 per cent of the global smartphone market, it is time for robust enforcement of the non-discrimination principle enshrined in the European Commission's July 2018 decision condemning Google for abuse of dominance with regard to Android". In a new blog post, Product Management Director Paul Gennai introduces the changes that will come as part of an imminent Google Play Store update.

The screenshots above show search apps from DuckDuckGo, Qwant, Seznam.cz and Ecosia, and the browsers Firefox, Opera, Microsoft Edge, and Puffin.

After the European Commission hit Google with a record $5 billion fine, branding Android as anti-competitive, the company said that it would do more to ensure that users know about the alternative browsers and search engines available.

Following its announcement last month that it would be prompting Android users to pick their preferred web browser and search apps, Google has now revealed details of how the scheme will work.

Not too long ago we saw that Google was pushing some user interface changes to the Play Store. One will show five browser apps, and the other will have five search apps.

Android of course is the widely used mobile operating system in the world, by some margin, well ahead of Apple's iOS for example. This applies to applications, games, movies, TV shows, music, ebooks, etc.

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