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Google Redefines Search Experience in Europe Under DMA Compliance

Google revamps European services for looming EU law. Search gets dedicated rivals' space, users pick default engines on Android & Chrome.


has adapted its services, including its prominent search engine, to meet the impending requirements of the European Union's Digital Markets Act (DMA). The tech giant, now labeled as a “Gatekeeper” due to its considerable market power, must implement changes with the DMA set to take effect in March.

In response to the , Google for users in Europe will soon feature a dedicated area for comparison sites and direct providers to list detailed results, including photos, star ratings, and more. This move will notably sideline some of Google's own services, such as Google Flights, from the search pages.

Changing Dynamics of Choice for European Users

As part of the changes, Android mobile phone users in Europe will see a new choice screen, enabling them to select a default search engine. A similar option is anticipated to surface during the setup of the Chrome browser on desktops and iOS devices. These screens aim at enhancing user choice and reducing Google's influence over service preference.

Additionally, the company is set to implement further consent protocols. Users may encounter new banners prompting decisions on data sharing between . Opting out of certain linkages might limit functionality or render some features inactive. The specifics on which functionalities might be affected remain slightly unclear, but Google mentioned that unlinked services could result in unshared data, such as reservations made in search not appearing in and personalization features in the user's Discover feed would be less tailored if Search, YouTube, and Chrome are not connected.

Upcoming Tools and Continued Concerns

In line with the DMA's goals of fostering data portability, Google is developing a Data Portability API. This tool will supplement Google Takeout, enabling users more ease in exporting their data. While compliant with the DMA's demands, Google has expressed concern that such regulations might limit choices for European individuals and businesses.

Despite these reservations, the overhaul of Google's European operations is indicative of the substantial impact the DMA is exerting on major tech companies. With similar adjustments underway at other gatekeepers like and , regulatory authorities across the world are closely monitoring the unfolding developments in the EU.

Luke Jones
Luke Jones
Luke has been writing about all things tech for more than five years. He is following Microsoft closely to bring you the latest news about Windows, Office, Azure, Skype, HoloLens and all the rest of their products.

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