How Google Paid 26$ Billion to be your Default Search Engine

In 2021, Google found itself in the spotlight once again, this time shelling out a surprising $26.3 billion to maintain its position as the default search engine on mobile devices and web browsers.

This eye-popping revelation emerged during a federal law and regulation trial and provided a rare glimpse into the financial arrangements that emphasize Google’s quest for digital dominance.

The U.S. Department of Justice, in conjunction with a group of state lawyers general, leveled allegations against Google, accusing the tech giant of misusing its dominant role in the field of online search to exclude competitors from critical distribution channels. One of the most important of these channels is Apple’s Safari web browser.


While the huge $26.3 billion covers a multitude of partnerships and agreements, it is widely wondered that the lion’s share of this sum is funneled into Apple’s coffers, thanks to their standing as the default search engine provider on Apple products.

Prior estimates had hinted that Google’s yearly payment to Apple for this privileged status could soar as high as $19 billion.

Google’s defense in this ongoing antitrust trial hinges on the assertion that users maintain the freedom to choose their preferred default search engine. However, the financial intricacies that uphold this practice have come under intense scrutiny, casting a spotlight on the intricate web of financial dealings that support Google’s omnipresence in the digital landscape.

The outcome of this trial could have far-reaching consequences for the tech industry and the future of online competition.

Ammara Ahmed

Ammara Ahmed

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