As the ‘trial of the century’ nears its end, have the scales tipped in the DoJ’s favor?

By Ronan Shields  •  November 17, 2023  •  2 min read  •

Ivy Liu

In mid-September, what is arguably the most impactful trial in the history of the internet kicked off with the Justice Department taking aim at Google’s market-dominating search empire, and after this week’s proceedings, some think the government will emerge victorious.

The stakes are very high for Google, with the government alleging that it violated U.S. antitrust laws as it rose to dominance in the search market through its distribution agreements with a string of fellow large corporations, including Samsung and Verizon.

What has generated the most column inches has been its relationship with Apple, with the initial estimates pegging Google payments to remain the default search engine on the iPhone in the region of $20 billion.

Google faces legal battles on multiple fronts. However, its current battle with the DoJ in a Washington D.C. courtroom is undeniably its most critical, with Big Tech players (not just Google) involved in the proceedings all eager to keep their inner dealings under wraps.

However, an apparent slip-up in this week’s proceedings revealed that Google pays Apple as much as 36% of its search revenues generated through the Safari web browser. According to Bloomberg reporters, the defendant’s head counsel “visibly cringed” when the disclosure was made by University of Chicago professor Kevin Murphy, a Google economics expert and witness for the trial.

The developments convinced Barclays analysts Ross Sandler and Tim Long to publish a note forecasting that Google is likely to lose the case – one that could potentially lead to some breakup.

However, the Barclays duo believes the eventual censure will fall short of that and estimated that eventual remedies would more likely resemble Safari users offered “choice screens” over what search engine to choose when installing the web browser.

“We’ve seen choice screens rolled out on Android devices in Europe already, which hasn’t had a major impact on Google’s market cap, mostly because query share didn’t change much, and the Android channel isn’t that material to Google’s bottom line,” read a note from the duo. 

However, with additional U.S. antitrust cases coming down the line next year, would a loss (albeit minor) set a bad precedent for the internet behemoth?

Why McDonald’s and Coca-Cola still see gaming as an experimental marketing channel

November 17, 2023  •  4 min read

Despite the rise of gaming and esports as an entertainment channel in recent years, McDonald’s and Coca-Cola are still figuring out exactly which key performance metrics signal success among the gaming audience. For now, they’re leaning on tried-and-true KPIs such as brand awareness and brand loyalty — when they’re scrutinizing the numbers at all, that is.

Why the NFL released an AI-powered game with Amazon

November 17, 2023  •  3 min read

The game will serve as a brand marketing tool to advertise pressure probability — which predicts the likelihood of each defender creating a pressure during plays, using four different AI models based on over 90,000 plays from the last five years of football. This data set launched across NFL properties in 2023.

Will Threads be the link between marketers and the fediverse?

November 17, 2023  •  5 min read

Threads could have been the missing link between marketers and the fediverse. But if it will is up for debate.

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Will Threads be the link between marketers and the fediverse?

Will Threads be the link between marketers and the fediverse?

As AI regulations loom, tech companies add new ways to improve their standards

As AI regulations loom, tech companies add new ways to improve their standards