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Google tweaks search engine results to placate EU antitrust regulators

The effort to placate the Europan Commission comes as the EU executive is set to slap the tech giant with a fresh fine over unfair competition practices

AFP | PTI  |  Brussels 


has unveiled a series of tweaks to its European results in an effort to avoid further fines from the EU's top anti-trust regulator.

The effort to placate the comes as the EU is set to slap the tech giant with a fresh fine over unfair competition practices later on Wednesday.

Tuesday's announced changes to search are intended to help the giant avoid a repeat of 2017 when fined 2.4 billion euros for favouring its "Google Shopping" price comparison service in

Kent Walker, Google's global affairs chief, said since then the company has "been listening carefully to feedback we're getting, both from the and others." "As a result, over the next few months, we'll be making further updates to our products in Europe," he said in a blog.

Google said its was testing a new display to that would allow certain rivals a more prominent position on results pages.

The change would apply to shopping aggregators, as well as tourist and such as and Yelp.

The change, currently under test, would add a tab showcasing Google's rivals high up on the web page in order to boost their traffic and avoid further scrutiny by the

The solution adds to efforts already made to fix Google Shopping, in which results were modified to display links to competing shopping comparison websites, such as Kelkoo, in order to placate

Google's are prized real estate with the US giant controlling roughly 90 per cent of the in Europe, according to EU data.

The shopping fine came after seven years of investigation launched by complaints from other that lost 90 percent of traffic against Google Shopping.

The is appealing the fine.

In a separate case, on Wednesday will be targeting Google's advertising service, saying it restricted some client from displaying ads from third parties.

In a third case, Google in 2018 was hit with another massive fine involving its

Google on Tuesday said their remedy for the case would be boosted as well: "In the coming months... we'll start asking users of existing and new devices in which browser ans they would like to use," Walker said.

First Published: Wed, March 20 2019. 04:45 IST