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Monday, April 18, 2011

S Korean search engines file Google complaints

Associated Press
April 15, 2011

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) - South Korea's top Internet search companies asked the country's antitrust regulator Friday to investigate Google Inc. over whether it restricts competition in the mobile search market.

NHN Corp., which operates the top Naver search portal, and No. 2 Daum Communications Corp. filed complaints with South Korea's Fair Trade Commission.

S Korean search engines file Google complaints

The companies claim that Google restricts competition through imposing restrictions on local mobile service providers and smartphone manufacturers that have adopted its Android operating system from pre-loading rival mobile services.

"Through a marketing partnership with major smartphone producers, Google has prohibited other market players from pre-installing their search window or related applications," NHN said in a statement.

Mountain View, California-based Google said that it had yet to be contacted by the Fair Trade Commission, but would cooperate to answer any questions it may have.

"Android is an open platform," Google said in a statement issued through a local public relations company. Google added that carriers and companies it partners with "are free to decide which applications and services to include on their Android phones."

FTC spokesman Jun Sung-bok said the commission had no comment on the filings.