Google Reaches Tentative Antitrust Settlement

Google sign on building
Google sign on building | Image by VDB Photos/Shutterstock

Google reportedly reached a tentative class-action settlement on Tuesday regarding an antitrust lawsuit.

Tech giant Google settled a class-action suit that alleged its Play Store had violated U.S. federal antitrust regulation by overcharging customers and engaging in anticompetitive pricing practices, according to Reuters.

The “Google Play Store Antitrust Litigation” — filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in 2021 — was brought against the company by attorney generals for 38 U.S. states and the District of Columbia representing 21 million consumers.

According to the plaintiffs, “Google illegally monopolized the Android app distribution market by engaging in exclusionary conduct, which has harmed the different plaintiff groups in various ways.”

Google denied all allegations and noted that the tentative settlement was not an admission of wrongdoing. Details of the settlement were not disclosed and are still subject to approval by the court, per Reuters.

This isn’t the first antitrust lawsuit brought against the California-based tech company.

Google is in the midst of multiple antitrust cases, including one brought by Epic Games Inc. and Match Group Inc.

“Epic Games isn’t a party to the proposed Google Play settlement with the States Attorneys General,” said Tim Sweeney, founder and CEO of Epic Games, in a post shared on social media.

“We’re fighting for consumer and developer freedom to do business directly, free of monopoly stores, monopoly payment processors, and monopoly taxes,” he added.

While Google has reportedly settled the suit with the U.S. attorney generals, Sweeney said Epic Games would not agree to a settlement unless the company did away with the 30% commission or service fee levied on in-app payments.

“If Google is ending its payments monopoly without imposing a Google Tax on third-party transactions, we’ll settle and be Google’s friend in their new era,” said Sweeney, according to Reuters. He added that Epic Games will pursue legal action against Google if the tax remains.

The Google antitrust case involving Epic Games and Match Group is scheduled for a jury trial on November 6.

The Dallas Express reached out to Google’s media relations team for comment on the tentative settlement but had not heard back at the time of publishing.

The case number for the Google Play Store Antitrust Litigation is No.21-md-02981.

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