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Alphabet’s Google Says European Commission Antitrust Case Could Hurt Open Mobile Operating Systems

Alphabet’s (GOOG, GOOGL) Google said Thursday that the European Commission’s antitrust case against the Android operating system could ultimately hurt open mobile operating systems and favor closed ones, such as Apple’s (AAPL) iOS.

Senior VP and General Counsel Kent Walker said in a blog post that the company has filed a response to the Commission’s statement of objections over how the company manages Android compatibility and distribute its own apps.

Walker said the Android system “carefully balances the interests of users, developers, hardware makers, and mobile network operators. Android hasn’t hurt competition, it’s expanded it.”

He also said the Commission’s case is based on claims that Android doesn’t compete with the iOS, which is not how Google sees it. He also addressed the argument that Google shouldn’t offer some Google apps as part of a suite.

“No manufacturer is obliged to preload any Google apps on an Android phone. But we do offer manufacturers a suite of apps so that when you buy a new phone you can access a familiar set of basic services,’ Walker said. “Finally, distributing products like Google Search together with Google Play permits us to offer our entire suite for free. This free distribution…lowers prices for phone makers and consumers, while still letting us sustain our substantial investment in Android and Play.”

Walker said the Commissions approach would upset the “fragile” balance of open-source platforms, leading to less innovation, less choice, less competition and higher prices.

“It would be a bad outcome for developers, for phone makers and carriers, and, most critically, for consumers. That’s the case we are making to the Commission in our filing today,” Walker said.

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