The National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) has postponed the final hearing of Google’s appeal challenging its INR 936 Cr penalty imposed by the Competition Commission of India (CCI) on the tech giant last year for allegedly abusing its dominant position in the Android mobile devices market.
On November 24, the NCLAT issued a notice announcing the postponement of the scheduled hearing for Google’s appeal. The appellate tribunal, originally set to commence proceedings on November 28, has deferred the hearing.
Earlier in September, NCLAT announced that the final hearing for Google’s case would begin on November 28.
The next hearing date will be notified later, NCLAT said in its latest notice.
Last year, the Competition Commission of India slapped two consecutive penalties, totalling more than INR 2,200 Cr, on Google for abusing its dominance in the Android devices market and with regards to its Play Store policies.
The CCI directed the tech giant to “not restrict app developers from using any third party billing/payment processing services”.
The antitrust regulator’s decision came after app developers in India had been voicing their complaints against Google’s 15%-30% commission on the Play Store. It instructed Google not to limit app developers from utilising third-party billing and payment processing systems.
Following this, Google unveiled a new commission structure, which offered a rebate of 4%, effectively setting the stage for 11-26% commission rates.
Besides facing the INR 936.4 Cr fine, the California-headquartered tech giant was also slapped with a fine of INR 1,337.6 Cr by the CCI around the same time last year for its anti-competitive practices in the Android devices market.
In this case, the tech giant filed an appeal in the Supreme Court challenging the NCLAT ruling that upheld the penalty. The apex court will hear the plea filed by Google in January 2024.
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