An alliance that comprises of attorney generals in the US states is investing new resources to launch an antitrust investigation on Google’s other businesses, focusing on Android and search businesses. Sources claims that in the past few months, US states have allocated resources for the investigation. In addition, there are new consultants in the negotiations. In addition, state officials are working closely with the U.S. Department of Justice, which is conducting a federal antitrust investigation of Google.
There are reports that some top politicians are trying to frustrate the proceedings of the investigation. However, the general political direction seems to be in favor of investigators. This is an election year, thus the behavior of large tech companies providing political opinions will be subject to scrutiny.
Sources claim the states have appointed Utah and Iowa authorities to lead investigations into Android. Regarding the survey of Google’s search business, states are forming leadership bodies.
People familiar with the matter also believe that states are still trying to hire “Honey of Google” and former Mississippi General Inspector Jim Hood as a consultant. It is unclear whether Hood will receive payment for this job. While serving as Mississippi Attorney General, Hood sued Google twice, accusing the company of using illegal content and mishandling child data.
Hood’s past experience suggests that the current investigation may extend to consumer protection. Google’s critics argue that consumer protection could be part of the antitrust debate. If consumers have more choices, they can demand more protection.
Googles take on the antitrust investigation
A Google spokesperson said the company “has been working constructively with regulators” and “will continue to do so.” “Google services help people, create more choices, and support thousands of jobs and small businesses across the US,” Kent Walker, Google’s senior vice president for global affairs, said in a blog post at the time. “