Google paid Apple $1 billion in 2014 as part of a deal to keep its search engine as the default option across iPhone and iPad devices.
The information was revealed in a lawsuit that didn’t include Apple; a case in which Oracle is accusing Google of using its Java software to make Android software without paying them revealed the latter’s revenues and profits for Android, which eventually highlighted the figure.
The deal involves Google giving a percentage of the money it makes through ads when the search engine is used on Apple devices. The suit suggested this was 34 percent, however, there’s little clarity in the case’s transcript and its not clear who got that 34 percent chunk. Either way, Google’s lawyer claimed: “We are talking hypotheticals here.”
It’s certainly an interesting notion – as this 9to5mac article notes, it highlights some hypocrisy on Apple’s part. Tim Cook has previously criticized the lack of privacy behind Google’s ad-based model, yet it appears that Apple is profiting considerably from it.
The revenue share is a significant percentage too, regardless of who gets the bigger slice, and demonstrates Google’s eagerness to retain its position. In 2014, Yahoo was keen to usurp Google as the key provider, while there were also suggestions that Apple could jump into the search market itself. It’s clearly important to Google to retain the position, especially considering it makes four times as much ad-revenue from iOS users than it does from its own Android users, as the above article also notes.
The case saw both Google and Apple attempt to redact this information, Google claiming that it’d affect their ability to make similar deals in the future.