36 US states sue Google over its alleged Play Store monopoly and antitrust practices

“This lawsuit isn’t about helping the little guy or protecting consumers,” insists Google.

Washington D.C. and 36 states have filed a lawsuit against Google for alleged antitrust practices.

As reported by Politico (thanks, TheGamer), the lawsuit – which was filed on Wednesday, 7th July 2021 in California and led by Arizona, Colorado, Iowa, Nebraska, New York, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Utah – reportedly challenges the megacorp’s control of the Android app store.

The filing takes umbrage with Google’s plans to take a 30 per cent cut of all digital goods and services sold via its Play Store from September and is just one of several ongoing litigation battles taken out against the company over Google’s perceived search engine and advertising monopolies.

In response to the filing, Google said it was a “meritless lawsuit” and thought it “strange” that a group of state attorneys general “chose to file a lawsuit attacking a system that provides more openness and choice than others”.

“This complaint mimics a similarly meritless lawsuit filed by the large app developer Epic Games, which has benefitted from Android’s openness by distributing its Fortnite app outside of Google Play,” the company’s senior director of public policy, Wilson White, said in a statement.

“We understand that scrutiny is appropriate, and we’re committed to engaging with regulators. But Android and Google Play provide openness and choice that other platforms simply don’t.

“This lawsuit isn’t about helping the little guy or protecting consumers. It’s about boosting a handful of major app developers who want the benefits of Google Play without paying for it. Doing so risks raising costs for small developers, impeding their ability to innovate and compete, and making apps across the Android ecosystem less secure for consumers.”