As much as a lot of us like to brag about how “Open” Android is, that really depends on who you ask, or on where you ask as well. Google has been facing antitrust lawsuits in a couple of countries already, mainly because Android isn’t really open in some cases, and the company is now facing some more issues in Europe because of its Google Play policies.
Installing third-party app stores is a common thing in countries like the US or China, where in the US we see the Amazon App Store, and in China where there are a ton of app services. Still, when it comes to Europe, a Portugal-based company called Aptoide is filing a complaint against Google. The complaint claims that it can’t submit a fully functional app store on Android devices because of Google’s non-compete clause when it comes to its Google Play Store. To make matters worse, Google is blocking the browser version of Aptoide on the Chrome browser claiming that there are spam issues as well. Aptoide goes as far as complaining on the difficulty users find the switch to allow the side loading of applications with newer versions of Android.
Obviously there is a lot to cover with this complaint, and we still have to confirm if Google is indeed legally infringing on a right that the company intends on its mobile operating system. Hopefully this doesn’t hinder competition going forward.