The US Justice Department’s epic trial against Google began on Tuesday with prosecutors claiming the tech giant “pays more than $10 billion a year” to companies like Apple to protect its ubiquitous search engine’s dominance.
In addition to major smartphone makers like Apple and Samsung, the DOJ accused Google of paying handsome sums to wireless Internet service providers, including AT&T and browser makers like Mozilla, to maintain its 91% share of the search engine market.
In what is considered the most important antitrust trial of the modern Internet era, a battle expected to drag on for 10 weeks, DOJ lead attorney Kenneth Dintzer criticized the annual payments as a “feedback loop” that has unfairly helped Google’s competitors. .
“This wheel has been turning for over 12 years,” Dintzer said during opening statements in a federal court in Washington, DC. “And it always turns to Google’s advantage.”