Apple reportedly paid a portion of Google Chrome search revenue in secret deal
17th February, 2023 at 8:39 pm by Divi
Image credit: Apple Inc.
- The Register reports that Google pays Apple a portion of its revenue from searches on Google Chrome on iOS.
- This is reportedly part of a large revenue-sharing deal between the two tech giants.
- This follows investigations by the CMA and US Justice Departments into the companies' complicated relationship.
According to The Register, Google allegedly pays Apple a portion of all search revenue generated by Google Chrome users on iOS. This payment is part of a search revenue sharing deal, which is known in detail by only a small number of people. The exact amount paid by Google to Apple and the wider terms of the deal have been redacted from reports by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).
The CMA and the US Justice Department have been scrutinizing the relationship between the two tech giants, especially since Apple does not provide any clear value to users who want to use Google Search within Google Chrome for iOS. The concern is that these payments are designed to prevent Apple from competing with Google's search engine, which could have major ramifications for Google's business model. Image credit: 9to5google The financial relationship between Apple and Google is a contentious issue, especially since Google pays Apple around $15 billion annually to ensure that its search engine is the default option on Apple devices. This arrangement has also faced regulatory scrutiny. The report by The Register speculates that this payment may explain why Apple has not launched its own search engine or developed its Safari browser to compete with Google's Chrome.
The Register also points to an antitrust lawsuit filed in December 2021 in San Francisco that alleges that Google paid billions of dollars to Apple and agreed to share its profits with Apple to eliminate the threat of Apple as a competitor. Apple and Google have both sought a dismissal of the case due to a lack of evidence of a horizontal agreement between the two companies. However, the CMA's investigation suggests otherwise.
In addition, Bloomberg reported that Apple also receives a share of the revenue from searches made through some of Google's own apps, such as Chrome, installed on iPhones, iPads, and Macs. This revenue-sharing agreement is part of what the CMA is investigating, and the report suggests that it could face significant antitrust pressure if proven to be true.