A group of attorneys general has teamed up again to oppose an antitrust lawsuit Google, this time claiming the company had abused its power over app developers through its mobile Play Store on Android.
The case marks that fourth antitrust lawsuit filed against the company by US government law enforcement officers last year.
By focusing on the Play Store, the latest lawsuit touches an aspect of Google’s business that is most similar to this Apples. The Apple App Store is torn between legal challenges and legislative questions, whether it wrongly bills developers for payments made through their apps by customers and whether it unfairly favors its own apps over those of its competitors.
The plaintiffs listed are attorneys general from 36 states and the District of Columbia from both parties. Plaintiffs in the case filed in the Northern District of California on Wednesday include California, Colorado, Iowa, Nebraska, New York and North Carolina.
In addition to the recent antitrust challenge, Google is facing an ongoing lawsuit from the Department of Justice and several states alleging that it used exclusion agreements to ensure the default status of its apps on devices from manufacturers using its Android mobile operating system. It is also facing a lawsuit by a group of Republican attorneys general focused on its advertising technology business, alleging an anti-competitive agreement with. to have met Facebook.
The third lawsuit prior to this latest challenge came from a bipartisan group of attorneys general that went beyond the DOJ’s allegations of exclusive contracts. The lawsuit alleges that Google is using vertical search providers such as Howl and Tripadvisor To be able to reach consumers through “discriminatory behavior on the search results page”.