Kathryn Carley, Producer
Tuesday, December 26, 2023
Android phone users in New Hampshire could receive some of a $700 million antitrust lawsuit settlement with Google.
States’ attorneys general alleged the company monopolized the market for app distribution and in-app payment processing in its Google Play Store – often taking a cut of up to 30%.
New Hampshire Assistant Attorney General for the Consumer Protection and Antitrust Bureau Alexandra Sosnowski said the settlement will hopefully spur innovation.
“With antitrust and this injunctive relief,” said Sosnowski, “the hope is that the markets will open up and there could be future competitors that enter this space.”
The search engine giant will pay into a fund that will be shared with an estimated 100 million eligible consumers across all 50 states.
The lawsuit brought by states’ attorneys general alleged Google blocked non-Google Play Store apps from advertising on its worldwide search platform and dominated the app distribution market with more than 90% of all Android apps downloaded from the Google Play Store.
Sosnowski said the settlement is a win for consumers, which she hopes won’t be delayed.
“A lot of times with these settlements you have to file a claim,” said Sosnowski. “We’re trying to not do that so that way consumers can receive the direct distribution. It just might take some time.”
Google faces another antitrust case lawsuit from the Justice Department involving its dominant search engine, which generates more than $200 billion in annual ad sales. That trial is set to begin in May.