Google to let Android users in EU choose browsers

Google to let Android users in EU choose browsers

Apps will be included based on their popularity and shown in random order.

Google is to offer Android users in Europe a choice of rival search engines and browsers in a bid to ease anti-trust concerns.

For new Android users, such screens will be shown off to first time users.

Last July, the European Union fined Google $5.1 billion for abusing its power in the smartphone market. 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. While Google claims phone makers were free to choose what apps they include on their phones, manufacturers were not allowed to include a single Google app like Maps without pre-installing the full Google apps suite which includes Search and Chrome.

Both new and existing smartphone users should gain access to the update as the patch rolls out over the coming weeks.

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Changes will be made to the permissions model and Google has rolled out guidance for each of the (potentially dangerous) Android runtime permissions, so that developers can get their apps in line with the new requirements.

To comply with the European Commission's ruling, Google announced today that it is giving Android users on the continent two new screens that won't be seen in the states. It seems that this was not a full OS update either as the build number remained unchanged.

If Google is unable to show European regulators that it has put a stop to its anti-competitive practices, it faces a fine of up to five percent of Alphabet's average daily worldwide turnover. You will be presented with options like Google Chrome, Firefox, Microsoft Edge, Opera Browser, Puffin Web Browser etc.

Android is the most widely used mobile operating system, beating even Apple's iOS. Each screen will present a total of five applications, including those already installed on the device. This goes against Google's developer policy, which doesn't allow "apps or developer accounts that impersonate any person or organization, or that misrepresent or hide their ownership or primary goal. or hide their country of origin and that direct content at users in another country".

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