Google is appealing the European Commission’s 4.34 billion euro fine and an order to drop anti-competitive business practices aimed at blocking rivals in internet browsing at the Luxembourg-based General Court.
The EU competition enforcer in its 2018 ruling said Google gave itself an unfair advantage by pre-installing its Chrome browser and Google search app on Android smartphones and notebooks.
Now the court has allowed Germany’s Gigaset Communications GmbH and Finland’s HMD Global Oy, which is the exclusive licensee of the Nokia brand for phones to part in the process in support of Google.
Other witnesses allowed to take part include tech lobbying group Application Developers Alliance, web browser Opera Software and the Computer and Communications Industry Association, which counts Google among its members, to intervene.
Commission supporters allowed to intervene are the European Consumer Organisation, lobbying group FairSearch whose complaint triggered the EU case, Czech search engine Seznam, French search engine Qwant and two German publishing groups, VDZ and BDZV.
Court proceedings are expected to start next year.