European Union antitrust regulators accused Google on Wednesday of abusing the dominance of its Android mobile operating system in deals with phone makers and mobile network operators following a year-long investigation.
"A competitive mobile Internet sector is increasingly important for consumers and businesses in Europe. Based on our investigation thus far, we believe that Google's behaviour denies consumers a wider choice of mobile apps and services and stands in the way of innovation by other players," European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said in a statement.
The charge could jeopardise a key money-spinner for Google, a unit of holding company Alphabet Inc. The tech giant made about $11 billion from ad sales on Android phones with Google apps such as Maps, Search and Gmail last year.
Google is already under scrutiny for promoting its own shopping service in Internet searches at the expense of rivals. That case, which has dragged on since late 2010, culminated last year with the European Commission hitting the company with antitrust charges.