If you enjoy playing on online casino apps using your device that runs on the Android operating system, you might be curious about the possible implications of a new Google antitrust suit. For the most part, though, there’s little reason for you to fret.
Even if the US Justice Dept. (DOJ) is successful in its latest action, which is far from a foregone conclusion, that shouldn’t affect the availability of online gambling apps or their features on Android devices. It could alter the business dealings of the companies behind those apps, though.
What is the newest Google antitrust suit all about?
To be clear, the Justice Dept. now has two separate actions against Google parent company Alphabet pending. In 2020, the DOJ filed a complaint against Google for allegedly forcing users of computers and mobile devices to use its search engine.
On Tuesday, the DOJ filed a separate but similar action. This complaint revolves around Google’s management of advertisements. Specifically, Justice wants the court to force Alphabet to sell off its Google ad manager suite.
According to Diane Bartx and David Shepardson of Reuters, advertising revenue comprises about 80% of Google’s income. Bartx and Shepardson reported that in response, Alphabet claimed that the DOJ is:
“doubling down on a flawed argument that would slow innovation, raise advertising fees, and make it harder for thousands of small businesses and publishers to grow.”
The lawsuit’s focus on Google’s advertising management and sales are the main reason why online gambling fans should have nothing to fear here.
Online casino apps should be unfazed
The first consideration when considering this action by the DOJ in the context of Android gambling apps is whether the lawsuit has a strong chance of success. As this is a civil suit, the onus is on the plaintiff to substantiate its claims.
In this case, the government has to prove that Alphabet acted with nefarious intent to limit competition. And that the behavior harmed consumers. Those can be high bars to clear. For that reason, a win for Alphabet in this litigation is a slight favorite at this juncture.
Even if the government is able to convince a court of the merits of its arguments, a restructuring or diminishing of Google’s advertising sales is unlikely to affect whether a gambling app is available on the Google Play Store. Such a change would probably not impact any app features or performance as well.
Gamblers can likely rest easy in regard to this litigation. But gambling companies might want to keep an eye on the proceedings. Modifications of how they reach Android device users and other customers could be ahead.
Possible but slight changes in advertising
If the DOJ is successful in breaking up Google’s advertising business, gambling companies could find themselves dealing with new brokers to get their ads into the top of appropriate search results. It’s unclear how such a change would impact the effectiveness and price of such ads.
What seems certain is that Google will fight this complaint. And if successful, this action will come down to a series of billable hours that the DOJ will have to pay for. Your online poker, slots, and table games should proceed unaltered regardless of the outcome, though.