Google's lead designer for "Inbox by Gmail" Jason Cornwell shows the app's functionalities on a nexus 6 android phone during a media preview in New York on October 29, 2014.
Jewel Samad—AFP/Getty Images
April 20, 2016 8:10 AM EDT

The European Union’s antitrust commission has charged Google with using unfair practices to promote its own services on Android devices.

Google requires mobile phone manufacturers who use its Android operating system to load up the phones with pre-installed Google apps like the Google Chrome browser and Gmail, Reuters reports. “A competitive mobile Internet sector is increasingly important for consumers and businesses in Europe,” European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said in a statement on Wednesday. “We believe that Google’s behavior denies consumers a wider choice of mobile apps and services and stands in the way of innovation by other players.”

Advertising on these apps provides a great deal of revenue for Google—one analyst estimated to Reuters that it could have accounted for as much as $11 billion last year. The company will have 12 weeks to respond to the charges.

Google’s general counsel said in a statement, “We look forward to working with the European Commission to demonstrate that Android is good for competition and good for consumers.”


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