In an effort to avoid any further punishments from the European Commission, Google is planning changes for its Android platform. Specifically, for the European Union, the company will include new Search and Browser ballot screens on Android.
Both additions are to help the OS comply with a 2018 European Commission ruling that found Google guilty of monopolizing practices on the continent. Google has often fallen foul of European regulatory laws and has been handed multi-billion-dollar fines on three occasions.
“We'll start presenting new screens to Android users in Europe with an option to download search apps and browsers,” Google's Paul Gennai explains. “These new screens will be displayed the first time a user opens Google Play after receiving an upcoming update.”
Two different screens will appear to Android users in Europe. The first will provide choices for web browsers and the other will be for search. Google has been accused of keeping users to linked to Chrome and Search services on Android. Both ballots will present five choices for users to select from.
Google Preference Remains
Google says apps will be ordered by popularity so could change at any time. However, the company's own Chrome and Search will remain the top choices in the list.
“Users can tap to install as many apps as they want,” Gennai continues. “If an additional search app or browser is installed, the user will be shown an additional screen with instructions on how to set up the new app (e.g., placing app icons and widgets or setting defaults). Where a user downloads a search app from the screen, we'll also ask them whether they want to change Chrome's default search engine the next time they open Chrome.”
While they are not available yet, the ballots are being rolled out quickly. Google says Android users across Europe will start seeing the choices over the next few weeks.