Google thought about blocking Safari users from new AI tools

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Google no doubt dominates the search industry and this is why it is now under the radar of the Justice Department. The department has launched an investigation against the tech giant to examine whether Google has a “fair” dominance in the market. A recent report reveals that Google once thought about blocking Safari users from accessing AI features.

Google is now under the radar of the Justice Department for unfair dominance

Google and Apple, both are part of an agreement where Google pays Apple upward of $18 billion every year to make Google.com an official default search engine on iPhone. According to the Justice Department, this is a hindrance to the competition in the search engine industry. This deal favours Google and is unjust to other search engines.

Apple is not mentioned as either “party” or “defendant” in the case. However, the executives such as Eddy Cue had to submit their testimonies to the department. While the case is still ongoing, Google was potentially aware of what was coming. And hence, Google wanted to increase the share of searches from iPhone users outside the Safari browser.

Google considered blocking Safari users from AI features to avoid potential antitrust cases

A report coming from The Information reveals that Google once thought to block Safari users from accessing AI features. This thought was a part of Google’s attempt to persuade iPhone users to switch to either Google or Chrome apps. If more and more users switch from Safari to either Google’s app or Chrome, Google will have to pay less money to Apple.

Google is required to share a portion of its advertising revenue from searches performed on the Safari browser with Apple. The strategy of Google blocking Safari users will steer the users towards Chrome or Google, this might reduce the company’s vulnerability to regulations. However, the plan was unsuccessful, as it proved to be “too difficult” to persuade iPhone users to stop using Safari.

Whether Google succeeded in persuading Safari users to switch to Chrome or not is a separate issue. What remains interesting to know is the final judgement of the US Justice Department on the matter.

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