Google Will Let European Android Users Select their Default Search Provider From Next Year

Starting next year, Google will show Android users in Europe a new choice screen to select the default search engine on their device while setting it up. Besides Google itself, there will be three more search providers that would be a part of the list.

Google will be deciding on the other three search engines through a sealed-bid auction. The top three bidders will be added to the list alongside Google search.

The search provider selected by the user will become the default search engine in the home screen widget as well as in Chrome on Android devices.

Search providers will also have to pay Google every time a user selects them over Google’s own search engine. The application process for search engine providers has opened from today, with Google rolling out the new choice screen to European Android users in early 2020.

Google rolled out the ability for European Android users to select their default search and browser app earlier this year. It was forced to make this move after a record $5 billion fine by the EU.

The move by Google to start charging search providers just to show them in the choice screen is not going to go down well with smaller search providers. While Google says that it is a “fair and objective method,” the company would end up benefiting greatly from it at the expense of the competition. On the flip side though, it is not possible for Google to list down all the search providers in the choice screen as it would make it a bit too crowded.

[Via Google]