South Korea’s Antitrust Regulator Fines Google $177m

South Korea announced its plans to fine Google 207.4 billion won ($177 million) for blocking its flagship smartphone brands like Samsung from utilizing other operating systems.

The Associated Press reported that South Korea enforced an amended telecommunications policy that bans Google or Apple from requiring mobile users to pay via in-app purchasing. 

South Korea was the first nation to enforce the law. The country has criticized how foreign technology companies operate in the market. 

South Korea’s Fair Trade Commission Chairwoman Joh Sung-Wook said that Google impeded competition since 2011 by requiring its partners to sign “anti-fragmentation” agreements, which prevented companies from installing other operating systems on other devices, paving the way for the technology giant to dominate in software and app markets. 

The Korea Communications Commission, the country’s telecommunications regulator, said that the revised policy halting Google and Apple from requiring in-app purchases has been adopted. 

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