Amid reports the European Union is ready to hit Google with a hefty fine, here is a look back at the key dates in the bloc’s legal tussle with the technology company.
November 2010 – The EU opens formal inquiry into whether Google manipulates search results in a way that favours its own business. The probe includes whether the search results favour Google’s services, such as its price comparison business, how it displays the contents of rivals, and how it manages ads.
April 2013 – Google offers change to its practice in the hope of ending the investigation.
The EU has been a constant thorn in Google’s side over the years. Pictured: Flags fly at the European Commission headquarters in Brussels
July-December 2013 – After feedback from complainants, the EU twice rejects Google’s offer to change its search results as not good enough.
Feb 2014 – The EU and Google reach a tentative agreement on how to fix the search results. This keeps Google from paying a fine.
May 2014 – In a separate case, the European Court of Justice rules that Google must consider EU citizens’ requests to remove irrelevant or embarrassing personal information that pops up on a search of their names.
Sept 2014 – After receiving complaints from Google’s competitors, the EU appears to make a U-turn on its settlement with Google on search results, declaring it insufficient.
April 2015 – After five years of investigations and talks, EU formally charges Google with abusing its dominant position in search results, a step up in the legal battle. It also opens a preliminary investigation into whether Google uses its Android mobile operating system to rig the market for apps.
April 2016 – The EU charges Google with using Android to gain market advantage in mobile apps.
June 2017 – The EU fines Google a record 2.42 billion euros ($2.72 billion) for breaching antitrust rules with its online shopping service. It says Google abused its market dominance as a search engine by giving an illegal advantage to another Google product, its comparison shopping service.