Alphabet Google in Russia: From a Ride to Space to a Day in Court

September 15, 2015

I remember when Sergey Brin was going to ride into space on a Russian rocket. See “Google Co founder Slated as Next Space Tourist.” No ride, no joy. Yet.

I learned in “Russia Says Google Broke Antitrust Laws” that the Alphabet Google thingy will have to deal with this alleged infraction:

Google Inc. has violated Russian antitrust laws by requiring that manufacturers pre-install its services on their devices, the local antitrust authority ruled, in a blow to the Internet giant’s bid to overtake domestic search-market leader Yandex NV.

The grouser is Yandex, a Russian information access outfit. I am not sure whom to believe. On one side of the legal matter, I see the Alphabet Google thingy. The company has spelled joy, creativity, and imagination. On the other side, there is Yandex, a company which offers a pretty good search system. The Russian language version provides access to content that I find difficult to locate in the Alphabet Google thingy.

The article reports:

Yandex has been losing market share to Google recently as the Mountain View, California-based rival is strongly positioned on devices running Android. Yandex’s share of Russian searches fell to 50 percent last month compared with 54 percent in January of 2014, according to, while Google’s share rose to almost 42 percent from 34 percent. “It’s a violation that Google required equipment makers to pre-install its services, including search, to get the Google Play application store on their devices,” Vladimir Kudryavtsev, head of the IT department of the Federal Anti-Monopoly Service, said by phone on Monday. The regulator will issue detailed instructions on remedies to Google within 10 days, Kudryavtsev said.

I find legal squabbles uninteresting. With the new Google structure, I would deduce that Messrs. Brin and Page find flapping with legal eagles less exciting than soaring with Loon balloons.

From my point of view, the Alphabet Google thingy is a squishy target. Will the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune would the beasty? I don’t know. I assume that riding a Russian space ship is on permanent hold for the Googlers. Still.

Stephen E Arnold, September 15, 2015


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