Thirty-four rivals have accused Google of unfair lying about its holiday rental search service and favoring its own service, according tomedia reports, urging the European Union to launch an antitrust investigation into it. In a letter to Margrethe Vestager, the EU’s competition commissioner, 34 companies, including HomeToGo, TripAdvisor, Expedia and eDreams, accused Google of boosting its own holiday rental search service. to the detriment of competitors.
The letter concludes that Google’s own service gets more user attention and clicks than any competitor’s service.
For example, Google grants its own service “free” for the kind of display space that Google charges for other holiday search services. Moreover, Google’s own services are not subject to the same page ranking criteria that apply to other companies. Such behaviour is anticompetitive and has the potential to stifle competitors, prevent new companies from entering the market, and ultimately lead to higher prices for consumers.
Lawyers representing the companies said the new complaint would put pressure on EU regulators to “prevent the platform from abusing its position as a gatekeeper, favouring its own services and restricting competition”.
The search giant has been fined a total of 9 billion euros by the European Union for illegally promoting its business on its platform. The company is also being investigated by the European Union, including how it collects its data and whether its practices create barriers to entry or harm competitors.