After two long years of investigations, the Federal Trade Commission and Google have reached a resolution.
Where Do We Go From Here?
Google has agreed to let its competitors have access to some of its standard technologies as part of the resolution. Advertisers will also have more flexibility in managing online campaigns with Google Adwords as well as rival platforms.
The FTC also determined that Google must provide fair and reasonable terms on some mobile and Web patents.
Google was not fined in the resolution, but it could be fined up to $16,000 per violation if it does not follow the terms of this agreement.
While the FTC did admit to some evidence on search manipulation, it wasn’t a violation of the antitrust laws.
Websites can now opt out of the search results from Google and can mix their ad campaigns using Google with other services.
The investigation began with a look at the search and advertising aspects of Google back in 2011. The FTC was also asked to look into allegations that Google put its own products first in a search.
Accusations from competitors say that Google used discrimination on search results and forced competitors out of the market.
Just this week, Microsoft accused Google of not allowing a YouTube app for the Windows Phone. Competitors to the company have long voiced their complaints about how the search giant does business.
The end result of the investigation is that the company will not have to make significant changes to the way it does business. Google sees this decision as a success and an affirmation of the way they handle their business dealings and searches.
Even with this ruling, expect to hear complaints from other companies who are in competition with Google or who don’t fare well in the searches.
[Image via frrole]