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Microsoft Alleges Apple Leveraged Bing as Negotiation Tool Against Google

 |  September 27, 2023

In the ongoing antitrust trial against Google, Microsoft has accused Apple of using its search engine, Bing, as a mere bargaining chip in the search-engine wars with Google. Mikhail Parakhin, the head of Microsoft’s advertising and web services, testified that Apple never seriously considered switching to Bing as the default search engine for iPhones reported Bloomberg. 

For nearly two decades, Apple has relied on Google as the default search engine in its Safari browser. However, Microsoft has been actively trying to displace Google and make Bing the default search engine for iPhones. Parakhin’s testimony sheds light on the challenges Microsoft has faced in its attempts to compete with Google’s dominance in the search engine market.

During the trial, Parakhin stated, “Apple is making more money on Bing existing than Bing does.” This statement highlights the perception that Apple has been benefiting financially from its partnership with Google, making it less inclined to consider Bing as a viable alternative.

According to Bloomberg, the rivalry between Google and Microsoft in the search-engine arena is not new. Both companies have been vying for dominance and market share for years. However, Microsoft’s claims against Apple reveal the complex dynamics at play in this competitive landscape.

Related: Google Calls Out Microsoft Over Anticompetitive Cloud Practices

Apple’s choice of default search engine holds significant influence over user behavior and revenue generation. Being the default search engine for iPhones would provide a substantial boost to Bing’s user base and potentially increase Microsoft’s advertising revenue. However, Apple’s loyalty to Google has remained steadfast, despite Microsoft’s persistent efforts.

Parakhin’s testimony underscores Microsoft’s frustration with Apple’s approach. He stated that Bing was never given serious consideration, and Apple used it as a bargaining chip in negotiations with Google. This suggests that Apple leveraged Bing’s existence to extract more favorable terms from Google, rather than genuinely considering a switch.

The antitrust trial against Google aims to examine the company’s alleged anti-competitive practices and dominance in the search-engine market. Microsoft’s testimony regarding Apple’s use of Bing as a bargaining chip adds another layer to the complex web of rivalries and negotiations in this industry.

Source: Bloomberg