It is a well-known fact that Google pays Apple billions of dollars to remain the default search engine in Safari. After all, with the millions upon millions of iPhone users out there, imagine if Google was not the default, Google could risk losing a lot of users and ad revenue in an instant.
However, it seems that a new class-action antitrust case is suggesting that this could be more nefarious than it is. The lawsuit has been filed in which it alleges that Google and Apple have violated antitrust laws because apparently, both companies have come to a “secret agreement” in which Google would pay Apple if Apple agrees to stay out of the search engine market.
Basically, it claims that Apple is taking money to agree not to get into the search business themselves, thus saving Google from having to compete against another potential search engine. The lawsuit is seeking the disgorgement of payments from Google to Apple, an injunction that prohibits the non-compete agreement between Google and Apple, the profit-sharing agreement, the preferential treatment of Google on Apple devices, and it also seeks to breakup both Google and Apple.
It is unclear if this lawsuit could be granted class-action status, but to date neither Google nor Apple have publicly responded to it.