The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) could be adding Google Maps to its ongoing antitrust investigation into the company. According to Politico, DOJ officials have been meeting with Google competitors and customers to determine who’d be ideal witnesses in a potential lawsuit challenging the company’s dominant market position for digital maps and location information, as shared by three unnamed sources.
More of these meetings are said to be scheduled in the coming month. The DOJ has also been looking at how Google packages its maps, app store, and voice assistant for automakers via Google Automotive Services. A lawsuit in regards to Google Maps could come as soon as this year, as reported by Politico, though sources note that a decision to file a case has still yet to be made.
The latest development potentially adding Google Maps to the DOJ’s antitrust investigation into Google comes less than a month after it filed a lawsuit targeting Google’s advertising operations. The DOJ also filed a lawsuit against Google in 2020 targeting its distribution of its search product. Furthermore, as reported by CNBC, Google faces a number of lawsuits from coalitions of state attorneys general in regards to similar issues focused on by the DOJ along with the Google Play mobile app store.
In a statement from a Google spokesperson, it says that developers are “free to use other mapping services in addition to Google Maps Platform — and many do.” The spokesperson also said that Google faces “enormous competition in the connected car space” and that automakers who use Google’s Android Automotive OS aren’t required to also use its automotive services.
For more on the DOJ’s interest in Google Maps and its ongoing antitrust investigation into the company, be sure to read through reports from Politico and CNBC. Also check out some of our previous coverage including the DOJ filing a second antitrust lawsuit against Google targeting its ad business, and our initial coverage of the DOJ suing Google in antitrust lawsuit alleging that Google has a monopoly in search engine.